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MediMike

Alright, let a non-poetic paramedic have it on his first draft...

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Medicine has always been around in my life. Mother an RN, father a medical imaging physicist, both coming home and telling stories of the patients they had seen, the care they had provided. These were the tales I grew up on, and that which helped shape my life. My father an officer in the Army, which meant every four years we would be on the road again. When, as a child, you are uprooted that many times, you develop the ability to quickly form social connections, and learn the excitement of meeting new people. Our last move brought us to Washington state, and the high school I began attending offered a class in sport's medicine. This simple class teaching basic anatomy, common sports injuries, how to provide first aid and how to tape became the catalyst for my future.

 

 

Soon after high school I enrolled in an EMT-Basic program at a local community college. The opportunity to volunteer providing aid at Special Olympics events was provided and I jumped on it. This is a tradition I have participated in every year since. Upon completion of this program I began working for a small ambulance company and quickly moved through the ranks to become a field training officer. It was a very eye opening experience for me, these were not the emergent critically ill patients I had mentally prepared myself for, but they still presented complex problems, problems that I had no clue about at times. In an effort to gain greater knowledge I changed companies and began working with a paramedic on an ALS ambulance. I was lucky enough to end up partnered with a medic who enjoyed teaching as much as I enjoyed learning, I spent a year gaining as much knowledge as I could and applied to paramedic school. It was then that I made the greatest mistake in my life. My friends and I went out to celebrate my upcoming interview, and I made the decision to drive home. I was pulled over and received a DUI, later dropped to negligent driving. This ended my career in EMS due to my inability to be insured by my company. I was adrift, with no clue where to go in life. I began nursing prerequisites, and discovered that it was not the path that fit me. Over the course of the next five years I returned to Washington, worked in a saw mill, joined the ironworker's union, and ended up attending an electrical lineman school in Georgia. I began working as a helicopter lineman across the country, spending the majority of my time on the road. While this was a glamorous, exciting career I never felt the same love for it that I did medicine. A pilots flying once flew medevac and we spent twenty days in Alabama reliving different calls we had been to, what we had seen and experienced. It was at that point I realized what I needed to do.

 

 

I informed the company of my resignation, walking away from a high paying job in a terrible economy to pursue medicine once again. I renewed certification, applied to paramedic school, and completed the program as one of the top five in my class. I figured that my desire for knowledge would be satiated at this point, that the pathophysiology, clinical exams, diagnostic procedures and technical skills would put an end to my curiosity, but I was wrong. A little over a year into my career I learned just how much I didn't know, and would never know staying in this specialized niche of healthcare. I found that assisting a patient obtain access to a charity care program for prescription assistance was just as satisfying as intubating a trauma victim, that talking an elderly woman through the proper use of her insulin was as rewarding as running a cardiac arrest. I have found that this field can not offer me what I really need, the knowledge and ability to make a lasting difference in the lives of patients. While we as pre-hospital providers are there at the worst times of a person's life, I want to be there at the good times as well.

 

 

Throughout my career I have interacted with many medical professionals, and believe that the career of a physician assistant is the best fit for me. I have always operated in a team atmosphere, never feeling the need to be the “top dog” in charge of everything. I have discovered through the years that primary care is what truly holds the most interest for me, the complexity of juggling numerous chronic conditions is an appealing challenge, as is the opportunity to establish more of a connection with my patients than a twenty minute trip in an ambulance. Through a variety of shadowing experiences I have witnessed the impact that a physician assistant can have on a patient's care, and I know that this is what I want. I didn't grow up as an orphan on the streets of Columbia, I've never spent the last few moments of life with a family member, nor have I watched a medical miracle save someone close to me, I have no dramatic experience in my life to draw upon.. What I have done is worked hard my entire adult life, learned many of life's lessons, been brought up high and knocked down low. It is these experiences which I believe have prepared me well for the next step in my career, that of becoming a PA.

 

 

It's a little long for CASPA, and I'm curious about including my grand 'ol mistake in there. I figured it would help to explain the gap in my career. I appreciate any and all feedback!

Edited by MediMike
Oh geeze...auto-correct changed it to "physicianS assistant"...Bet I almost got my rear end chewed there...

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I think including the mistake could be a great thing...it shows that you have the ability to overcome obstacles and that you're motivated. I'd leave it in. It definitely caught my attention...which is great because you don't want it to get lost in a pile of boring essays :) Good luck!

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Thanks for the feedback Am, I appreciate the input! I also noticed some screwiness at the end of the 2nd paragraph which will get fixed.

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I like the paper, it shows alot about who you are and why you want to be a PA, the only thing that caught me off guard was in your concluding paragraph talking about working in teams. I think its a great idea to talk about working as a team, but the statement of not feeling like you need to be the "top dog" I feel can be perceived as lacking ambition. I think you could re-word that and talk about how you work well with others without conveying that you dont want to be in charge of certain situations. I could be wrong, thats just how i perceived it. However it is a solid draft for sure.

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ALRIGHT! fellow "medic",

Nice idea with (P-3) the "rewards of "Rx vs. Trauma"...and the"access to health care..." If I can see what you’re trying to do then "THEY" can to..are you really being honest? you don’t have to slam trauma or the acute care provided by “US” EMS providers, ESPECIALLY since we all know that’s why we got in to IT. HOWEVER, if you've "been there , done that" and you're on the back side of a 25 year career, then let it fly. I was just having a hard time validating the "just as rewarding"...THEN AGAIN, I DO SEE WHY AND WHAT you’re trying to say..AND REMEMBER, THESE DAYS...THE EMERGENCY ROOM HAS EVOLVED TO BECOME PRIMARY CARE FOR MANY OF THE UNISURED. ya think? THEREFORE, you may wanna go with plan "H" and that is for the passion in your "H"eart. I know this motivated you through medic school, i.e. Trauma, Acute Care, bla, bla...The variety and innate daily challenges of life vs death.. oh, and yes, the sore throats and skinned knees..:) Just my thoughts..Ron

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CMC-

Thanks! I understand what you're saying, I do enjoy and have no trouble being the guy in charge, but it's never been a huge driving force for me. I've met too many EMS providers with the BillyBadA$$ attitude, and have no wish to convey that in my narrative. Appreciate it!

Ron-

Hahaha I totally see where you're coming from, and yes, 10years ago that was the driving force for me entering medicine, but to be honest I am slightly burned out on it. I do still enjoy acute care practices, but just feel the desire to do more. Glad to hear some feedback from a fellow medic! (And it's kind of easy to validate those two, at least the grandma is probably gonna live haha)

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Here's another fellow medic's two cents. It's good, leave in the mistake--shows your humanity and your ability to overcome, and your commitment to your goals even though you had to take the long road to get them. It will be your "grab," what sets your essay apart from the others. I like the "top dog" reference, I know a lot of medics who work on ambulances because they want to be in charge and be the leader--nothing wrong with that, someone's got to do it, but that's not what being a PA is all about.

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