Top 10 Things I Learned My First Year As a Paramedic

Written By: Ryan Hutt

An Ada County Paramedic tends to a patient.

Ada County Paramedic Ryan Hutt

For Ada County Paramedics

Being a “new guy/gal” at an emergency medical service (EMS) agency can be a rough experience. Not only do you have to learn new policies and protocols, but you have to simultaneously find a niche in your new medical world.

Through the good and bad, a new experience is something I reflect on with insight and gratitude. So without further ado, here are the top 10 things I learned in my first year at Ada County Paramedics:

1. As much as you’d like to– you can’t always volunteer for everything.

Picking and choosing volunteer opportunities carefully will make you feel like your contributing without stretching yourself and your time too thin.

2. Ada County Paramedics truly cares about the happiness and satisfaction of its employees.

Ada County Paramedics is a great place to work. Not only do you have the support of your colleagues and teammates, but our supervisors and administrative team always makes you feel like you have someone in your corner.

3. Being on-time for work means being 15 minutes early.

You can probably understand why being late isn’t an option for paramedics.

4. The “Standing Written Orders” (STOs, which are protocols for Ada County Paramedics) are very progressive.

Our SWOs allow us as paramedics and Emergency Medical Technicians to make sound judgment calls instead of following a “to-do” list.

5. The connections we have with local physicians gives us instantaneous feedback.

We are held to a high standard, and we’re held accountable for every action and decision we make.

6. Ada County has a wide variety of call types secondary to its unique ability to be both rural and metropolitan.

Working at Ada County Paramedics, I’ve come to realize I have and will continue to see any kind of emergency call you could imagine.

7. Once you get a label or nickname while working at Ada County Paramedics, that name will stick with you past the duration of your career.

Just ask any paramedic or EMT what their nickname is and how it came about. Most everyone will have a story.

8. Ada County Paramedics is the only EMS agency in Idaho that offers an innovative discount ambulance membership.

This program, called VitalRide, helps Ada County Residents pay their ambulance bills. Members pay a very affordable yearly rate (only $60) that vastly decreases the cost of an ambulance ride to the ER. And the membership covers everyone in the household!

9. Ada County Paramedics’ employees care about their advancement and professional growth.

Everyone who works at Ada County Paramedics cares very much about the organization and helping provide the best healthcare we can to patients during emergency situations.

10. I love my job.

In a nutshell, I feel very proud to be an Ada County Paramedic. I love what I do and I know I’m very lucky to have a job I can’t wait to get back to each day.


For more information about Ada County Paramedics, like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and visit us on the web!

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