What’s your (EMS) story?
I started my EMS career 8 years ago in the Dallas/Fort Worth area after getting interested in the concept of “prehospital medicine”. After finishing EMT school, I was fortunate to quickly start paramedic school, begin volunteering at a fire department, and get a job working as a tech in a local hospital. Working in-hospital gave me a lot of appreciation for the continuum of care, but ultimately solidified my desire to stay in the out-of-hospital environment. It was during this time that I also realized that, while I enjoyed some aspects of the fire service, I cared more about the medicine and didn’t see myself having interest in promoting up the fire ranks. From then on, I focused on 3rd service EMS agencies which ultimately pushed me to move to both Austin and Houston. After spending a few years in Austin I ended up moving to the Houston area to work for Montgomery County Hospital District (MCHD). Since coming to MCHD I’ve been fortunate to not only grow clinically and professionally, but also be a part of several unique opportunities including recruiting, teaching and precepting, ambulance design, clinical challenges, EMS conferences, serving a little time on our tactical team, and even being on a few podcasts. On top of MCHD, I also work as an EMS educator for HCA’s Gulf Cost Division, volunteer on the ATEMSP membership committee, and stay busy as a student in the Bachelor of Science in Emergency Health Sciences program through UT Health San Antonio. I also currently hold flight, community, and tactical paramedic certifications through the IBSC.
What’s your greatest EMS related interest?
Mentorship is a big one for me. I’ve been very lucky to have great mentors throughout my career and I wouldn’t have half the experiences or be half the paramedic I am today without them. I’m passionate about a lot of things in EMS, though, so I’m going to cheat and summarize mentorship, education standards, clinical practice, mobile integrated healthcare, and advocacy under the umbrella of “professional development”. Whether it’s clinical growth for an individual provider through proper mentorship, or clinical growth of the entire profession through legislatively increasing education standards, both are (in my opinion) crucial to our professional development.
Why did you join ATEMSP?
I joined the association because I felt that the work being done was incredibly important. One motivated provider may be able to enact positive change at the microlevel of their own department, but to replicate that impact on the macrolevel requires a collective effort. ATEMSP serves as that collective effort by providing legislative representation for Texas EMS professionals. This important role provides Texas EMS with a literal seat at the table during state legislative sessions right alongside other public safety and healthcare professions. Like many EMS professionals, I once misunderstood and disregarded the importance of legislative support from policy makers and elected officials. Once I learned about ATEMSP and the importance of legislative representation, I not only joined but also got involved on the membership committee to help others understand the importance of ATEMSP’s efforts.