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As an EMS worker, your main duty is to take care of others and help those in need. You are to care for everyone the same without letting factors such as race, age, gender or even appearance affect the quality of your care. However, there are some factors that may affect how you have to care for others in order to achieve this same quality of care. The typical transport protocol may not be feasible for some patients based solely on their size. You will still need to be able to transport the smallest and largest of patients with the same level of safety and comfort as you do others that tend to be in the standard size range.
There is a multitude of reasons for an infant to need transport to a medical facility. The infants that are in a more stable condition, may be able to be transported to the facility with their mothers. This approach will offer more comfort and stability and may even give them some added warmth during transport. Those in a more serious condition may need supportive care such as IVs and smaller-sized intubation tubing. The worse the state the patient is in may make transport with the motherless likely, and you will need to have the appropriate types of blankets and other supportive supplies on hand to properly fit an infant, not a full grown adult. You want to ensure that your patient is kept comfortable and safe during transport, which means you will need to have all the supplies on hand to keep these smaller patients supported during transport.
Larger Patient Transport
In your day to day activities, you may come across some patients that are taller or wider than your average transport. Most of these individuals will not be able to use the medical equipment you have on hand. Most of the equipment you use in your everyday transport is designed for the standard sized person. Luckily, many of the smaller sized adults can use your pediatric equipment, but a larger sized adult will be a little harder to accommodate. A larger sized patient may not be able to properly fit into your standard sized beds or stretchers, and you will find that it is more difficult to fit them into braces than your average sized patients. You may need to double up on some equipment such as pillows and blankets to help keep them comfortable. You should look into purchasing specialized transport equipment made for larger patients to ensure you can take care of every patient you may encounter. You may want to purchase and use a Megamover, which is a device used for heavy lifting (up to a thousand pounds). Have your staff understand the proper lifting techniques for transporting larger people and never be afraid to use additional staff to help during a lift. The additional personnel will help protect your staff and the patient.
Unfortunately, the medical equipment most commonly used in your day to day routine will not be a one size fits all but one size fits most type of scenario. You will be able to treat and transport most of your patients with this equipment, but you will also come across exceptions. These patients will still need to be properly treated, and you will have to have additional equipment and training available to properly and comfortably treat them. It is your responsibility to know the proper techniques when treating patients outside the normal size range and to have the knowledge to use the additional equipment needed to treat them. All of your patients deserve the best care, and it is up to you to do everything in your power to give it to them.