Jun 29, 2009

Tasers in the ER...

(This blog refers to a post by "Impactednurse.com" which can be found here)
Dr Donald Dawes, from the University of Louisville, Kentucky, reported that
Tasers were used 27 times at one Minneapolis medical center over a one year
period and found the number of injuries to both patients and medical staff were
reduced with the introduction of Tasers to the hospital.
(For more information on Taser devices: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taser)

It is an interesting sign of the times when we even have to be discussing use of Tasers in the E.D. However, it is a sign of today's times indeed. I can speak from my personal reference including my personal observations and viewings of Taser use in the ED.

A local ED is staffed by at least 2-3 "off duty" local law enforcement officers 24/7, they carry the usual fare of lethal as well as non-lethal force weapons (Tasers). I have seen them 'displayed' to a perp twice and seen them used to drop a pt. twice. I have "heard" them out of eye sight being used 3-4 times.

While not considered "firearms", Tasers do present a new venue of consideration which requires application of standards, codes and interpretation of the law and consequences.

There are even safety claims as to the liability for Taser weapons to cause permanent and or fatal damage. This is an ongoing debate and struggle to get these tools accepted more widely.

However, when I consider all the times I've seen the Taser "deployed", it was situations, which, in my opinion, had it not been deployed, it would have escalated into a situation in which deadly force would have been likely to have been used and/or warranted.


Jun 28, 2009

Stimulus Checks to fund EMS????

Over at JEMS.com there is an article, "Stimulus to pay for emergency vehicles" which originally was printed in the Chattanooga Times Free Press (May 19).

In said article, it explains how Tennesses will get approx $4.5 MILLION for fire, police and rescue vehicles courtesey of the "Stimulus Package".....WHAT??

I for one, did not envision the Stimulus Package, errrrr, the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act to be used for this kind of spending. Never mind that I'm already highly irritated that my tax money is having to go to save corporate CEO's and middle/upper managers from loosing their jobs and a general re-organization of corporate USA for the "benefit" of all....AKA my "bailout" of America at MY expense.....now I'm funding the public sector in ANOTHER state?

This whole thing reeks of shades of the misappropriate and irresponsible spending of Homeland Security funds status post 9/11. See this article from 2005 that talks about amongst other things: New Jersey buying air-conditioned garbage trucks and Nebraska buying cattle prods and chutes...?????

Prime examples of wasteful government spending, often not directly related to the original intent of the grant.