As an emergency medical technician you will be called on to face some of the hardest challenges one can go through Some will challenge you emotional and some mentally One day you can be sitting at the base when you get dispatch to an unknown problem call When you get on scene you're greeted by a lady who tells you I was driving down the road and seen this child sitting on the side of the road She also tells you the child would not make any eye contact with her and once the sirens from the ambulance started to get closer it seemed to bother him Which then caused him to cry and scream as if he was in a lot of pain After making sure the scene is safe and you and your partner have on all your personal protective equipment you approach the child You greet the child and tell him your name The child just sits there and seems to not be paying you any attention The closer you get to the child the further he moves away from you You notice that he is not making eye contact with you either He is sitting there rocking back and forth and flapping his hands screaming Your partner touches him on his shoulder and he began to scream loud as possible Your partner says He might have something going on with his shoulder Then you remembered when you were doing your scene size up you recognized he had a shirt on that had a colorful picture of some puzzle pieces That is when it hit you This child might have autism So you told your partner to try and remove his hand from his shoulder You tell him this child might have autism and probably do not like being touched by anyone and that his shoulder is probably okay Any patient with special challenges such as autism disorder can make your job as an emergency medical technician very challenging I have a six year old son who is diagnosed as autistic I have to understand and be around it so I tend to be able to understand and recognize it faster than someone who is not around it Autism is a developmental disorder that affects a person ability to communicate and interact Autism is more common in males so common it is seen up to four times more in them The inability to communicate appropriate is the most common sign you will notice with children whose been diagnosed with autism disorder Communication is the key to being able to provide good medical care to any patient
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A person who lacks the ability to communicate and understand what is happening or going to happen makes any job a challenge An autistic patient can present as a nonverbal patient Thus having you face just one of the numerous challenges you already face As an emergency medical technician no matter how experienced you may be having someone autistic is probably going to be your biggest and toughest challenge You must remember that most people who suffer from autism disorder do not like to be touched by anyone especially a stranger Remembering that they do not like being touch and they maybe nonverbal will have you wondering how do I treat a patient like this The best thing an emergency medical technician can do is to take the time out and learn as much as possible about patients with special challenges It might not be easy or it might seem pointless to some but remember that everyone you come across is not made the same Just being able to understand their mindset and how they function can help in determining what the mechanism of injury or nature of injury might be Always remember that you will have to gain the patient trust to even come near most autism people You must understand that a lot of autistic patients might not be able to comprehend complex sentences and questions Just by realizing you can possibly gain an autistic person trust by doing some easy things such as taking a glove out your pocket and blowing it up or even let them play with the stethoscope Just by doing simple and friendly things like that you might be able to gain their trust If your unable to gain patients trust you will never know what their chief complaint Always remember that you might have an extended on scene time with a patient with special challenge Stay calm and be patient with them Being an emergency medical technician you will always have to remember that every time you are dispatched you truly never know what kind of patient you may encounter
The dispatcher can only give you the information that they are giving Most people will not tell you if they are diagnosed with autism Remembering to know what you might come across and how to handle patients that are consider a special challenge will not just help you become a good emergency medical technician but it will help you in your day to day life Just by learning the most common signs that are associated with autism disorder it will help you incase you encounter a patient who is diagnosed as autism Not only can you benefit from learning the signs you can also teach your peers who can benefit from it as well There comes a lot of challenges with having patients with special challenges Knowing how to treat patients that is considered a special challenge can help you in many ways as you further your career as an emergency medical technician
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