Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Not Just Guns, Phone Calls are Killing People in Philly

...and many other big cities I'm sure.

Captain America at 'First In' wrote about something the other day that the press here in Philly wants to ignore.

(aside: A reporter at the Philadelphia Inquirer assured me "it was not a conspiracy" when I asked why there was NO investigative journalism going on when it came to the problems plaguing the Philadelphia Fire Department. He claimed it was a staffing issue, yet they found the staff to write tons of stories about the Geno's Steaks "speak English" sign. I agree it's not a conspiracy's cowardice, just like those journalists in the UK that won't write about Islam. No one in Philadelphia will get anywhere near a story that could result in talking about race relations in the City of Brotherly Love.)

Aside from the aforementioned sad, politically motivated and completely unnecessary race issues that are demoralizing the Department, there is an ever growing epidemic of 911 abuse by the citizens of this fair city (and I'm sure many other big cities in the US).

Philadelphians suffer under the misconception that if they arrive at the Emergency Room in an ambulance they will be seen quicker. FALSE. You will still be triaged like anyone else. Some actual calls over the past month in Philly have included, but are not limited to:
-A night stocker at a grocery store looking to get out of having to work his shift calling 911 because "he dropped a box on his penis."
-A man that called because "his wife's mucus seemed a little yellow."
-A woman that left the emergency room, went home and called 911 thinking that would get her seen right away.

Meanwhile, people with ACTUAL life threatening emergencies are dying because there are no ambulances available to come save them because they are checking some guy's wife's yellow mucus.

Right now the FD takes all calls because of...well, the CYA factor of course (once again it all goes back to those lawyers) Some are saying that Philly needs at least 40 more buses, but I say the city needs to penalize non-emergency calls. Here are my two proposals:

1) Any b.s. caller (i.e. non life threatening situation) receives a $100+ fine on the spot.
2) Medical 911 calls are directed to R.N.'s that triage and prioritize them over the phone for the paramedics. "Yes Sir, there will be someone there to see your wife's mucus for themselves, but this is a low priority call and it could be up to 4 hours before someone gets there. You may want to call your doctor or just have her blow her nose."

My dad astutely pointed out that this second proposal, the one that would actually work, could never happen. Why you ask? Why do you suppose...this is Philly. Unions. The dispatcher union would never let it happen. They would rather people die of heart attacks than have someone else on their turf.

Liberals, lawyers, unions and ignorant people that use EMS like a cab company...killing Philadelphia without guns.

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