It’s rude to stand people up

Code 3 for shortness of breath. XXX Street, apartment C. “Trying to get more details.”

It is 3am, and we’ve had about an hour of sleep so far.

“Spanish translator. No details yet.”

We arrive at the address within minutes. It’s dark.

“Hey, these apartments are all numbered, not lettered.”

“We’re at the correct address, right?”

“Hmm… yup. Maybe apartment C is really apartment 3.”

“Dispatch, can you call back the reporting party and confirm the address and apartment number?”

A neighbor sees us walking around with flashlights pointing everywhere, especially at all the doors. Why he’s up and about, I don’t know. I learned long ago not to waste brain space on that kind of stuff, especially in questionable neighborhoods.

“I think they left a few minutes ago.”

Exactly what emergency would cause someone to not be able to wait a few minutes for us after calling us and instead drive a private vehicle to the hospital, I don’t know. This I still haven’t learned not to waste brain space or blog posts on. I mean, kudos for taking yourself to the hospital for what I’m sure is not an actual emergency, but can’t you do that before you call 911 at 3am? Jesus.

Dispatch raises us on the radio.

“You can go back into service. The patient is at the hospital now.”

“I’m so glad we got up for this shit.”

2 thoughts on “It’s rude to stand people up”

  1. It’s amazing how many people forget how to call 9-1-1 back to cancel the ambulance once they cab, friend, rickshaw, or one of other 87 modes of transportation they called first arrives to take them to the ED for treatment of their non existent emergency.

  2. We have sort of the same problem here. People will stop at a local fire station, 2-3 miles short of either one of two perfectly capable emergency departments. They pull into the station, get the fire people out to their car, then the fire people call dispatch, then the call is dispatched, then we respond (through seven stoplights and three fourths of the way without passing zones) to the scene. Usual response time from dispatch is 8-10 minutes, plus another five for the notification and passing the information to dispatch. And they were less than 10 minutes from either one of the two EDs, 5-7 if they don’t catch the stop lights.

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