Am I the only one out here that follows the SOPs and SOGs as well as the rules set by my Department ?
I am the EMS LT in our Department,which means,I am responsible for the squad.The maintenace,keeping it clean and making sure our EMTs have the supplies they need when they need it.
I am so tired of repeating myself to our members by telling them the rules about cleaning up after yourself when you run EMS calls. My maintenance only requires me to actually clean the bus once a month, but I am finding that because no one is following the rules, I have to do it once a week to keep on top of it. It isnt just a personal preference about wheather it is clean of not, it has become a sanitary issue.
I have taken this issue to my Chief. He has brought it up at our monthly meetings but nothing is changing and I am getting worn out from just cleaning,let alone chasing them around like a Mother to make them get their PCRs done in a timely manner..
Does anyone else think this is crazy? I feel like if I do keep repeating myself to Chief, I sound like a baby and when I dont, Im stuck doing it myself.
Ok first it sounds like you are working in a volunteer dept. With that said there are things that can be done if all the powers that be support the policies. If all the line and administrative officers help to encourage people to do the right thing such as clean up after themselves and after calls it will be done more often. Then there is that call at 3am when they get back at 5am and have to be at their regualer job at 7am. This will mean a rushed cleaned up/restock as opposed to the I have no were to be after this call scenario. If members are assigned to do rig checks or clean up on specific days and they repeatedly do not then the officers can sit them down and hope a talking to helps. If it doesnt well here is the problem. Punish a volunteer and maybe loose the help they give. Or ignore it and take what you can get. I think the answer comes from within each dept and the overall attitude that is instilled in the new members as they start in the service. If new members see things being done a certain way they are more likely to follow in those footsteps. If the officers have bad habits then the members will also. Continue to do the right thing as an officer and keep the faith, even if things don't change you will know you did the job right. Hope this helps.
Stay within your job description for a month or two and let others see how nasty the box gets.
And if no one says anything, then your service has much bigger problems than just being slobs.
A lack of pride in any organization is the quickest way to kill recruitment and retention.
But if your area is flush with people wanting to join, then buy more mops.
The chief won't think it's so cool when the DPH comes in for an inspection and they shut you down until they're corrected.
And read anything by Lasky.
A dirty ambulance breeds disease, I'm sure I don't have to tell you that. You mentioned that you are the EMS Lieutenant. Does your F.D. give you any actualk authority as the EMS LT? If I gave my people a directive and it was ignored, there wouold be disiplinary consequences! Also as Art mentioned, the shi*t will hit the fan when your Dept. of Health comes in for the inspection and takes that ambulance out of service! As mentioned below also, try just doing your job and when others aren't doing theirs and the box looks like hell, bring the Chief over for some show and tell. The same goes for the PCR's. Hope this helps...stay safe!
I would have a chat with all of the EMTs. They may need to know WHY you are nagging them to clean the bus after a call. They need to be reminded that the ambulance business is an on-demand type of thing, and the rig has to be ready to roll at all times.
Ready to roll means:
Equipment is re-stocked and in the proper places
The floor and surfaces are clean and sanitized
The cot is made up with clean linen and is presentable
The outside is clean and presentable
And so on
The consequences of having a dirty bus include:
Violation of state health law, risking a shut-down of your service
Increased risk of spread of infectious or contagious disease to patients AND crew members alike
A poor first impression of your service on the public, destroying in seconds what your members took YEARS to build
I would also do a few surprise inspections after various calls to examine the bus, and privately chat with crews who leave it in less than clean condition.
Or, be at the station when the rig gets back from a call and supervise their cleaning it. Being there for this purpose may send a stronger message than all of the nagging done to date.
Failure or refusal of a member to clean up would constitute insubordination, and your chief would no doubt get involved at that point.