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Police officers as EMT's


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  • Police officers as EMT's

    Have just started an EMT-B class for a local police department. Many questions have been raised so far regarding different policies, non of which have been addressed by the chief. These officers were NOT given a choice about taking the class, which does make it a challenge. I would like any information from someone that has experienced this, especially any policies or problems they ran into, and how it can be handled. I want to give them the best, and safest information I can, especially when conflicts arise...am I working as an EMT or officer, etc. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Hints, advice, even comments would be great! Please feel free to e-mail me, or leave comments here. I will be checking back frequently! And I'm sure more questions will come up as we go along.

  • #2
    Here in Washington many small town's have their officers EMT trained. Especially those with volunteer fire dept's. Its good to have the skills when you need it the most.


    • #3
      How about this problem:

      Plain View Doctrine vs. Patient Confidentiality?

      All of our officers are EMTs, and an officer responds to EVERY ambulance call along with the paramedics and semi-volunteer EMTs (complicated situation - don't ask) .

      Of course, we also run a jail because the county doesn't.

      So the city gets three jobs done for one low price. It's like the Wal-Mart of public service.


      • #4
        I spent nearly as many years as a medic as I have as an officer. None of it was mandated by any department that I worked for, I have just always wanted to help folks, as well as being an adrenalin junkie.

        I have on many occasions had to ask myself "which hat am I wearing now." Particularly when working as the only substation deputy on duty and responding to an accident with injuries and a fire. (I was also a volunteer fireman for several years.)

        Really the answer is a lot more simple than it looks. PRIORITIZE. What is the thing that is needed to be done FIRST to protect the MOST people.

        Now, as far as issues that come up where you receive information as a medic that you use in court against someone. Personally I was never unlucky enough to run into this, but what I was told by local DAs was that there really is not the doctor/patient privilege with LESSER QUALIFIED EMS personnel. In other words, if you don't have the MD behind your name, you don't have the confidentiality problem. As I said, this is NOT first hand experience, just what I was told by district attorneys in two different counties that I worked in.

        For what it is worth the National Park Service does this all the time. As far as I know, ALL of their LE rangers are at least an EMT-1 (or basic) level.
        6P1 (retired)


        • #5
          Oh, I forgot to add one other thing - my opinion:

          It is my personal (and very strong) belief that NO ONE should be forced into an EMT class if they do not wish to gain and use the knowledge they get there.

          A First Responder course is much more likely to be suitable for MOST law enforcement agencies.
          6P1 (retired)


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