A Day In The Life - Jeremey Littleton
There have been movies ﬁlmed, television shows broadcast that have spanned decades, and our culture as a whole has a bit of a fascination with the idea and drama inherent to the drive behind delivering emergency medicine. We took a few minutes to sit down with our own Jeremey Littleton to discuss a day in the life of an Emergency Medical Clinician, what the plans are for providing consistent community care, and how he and others in EMS work to coordinate life-saving care for those in our region!
For Jeremey Littleton, his mornings start with a large cup of coﬀee. As an emergency services professional, being alert and ready to perform on the job tasks in a must. Jeremey works as both a technician in the hospital and as a paramedic on the ambulance. Preparation for each day includes checking to make sure they have the proper equipment ready to go in order to be successful on emergency calls. In the emergency room, Jeremey inspects monitoring equipment, and checks supply inventory to be sure they are well prepared to receive patients for the day. A typical shift for Jeremey can last anywhere between twelve to sixteen hours depending on the call volume. Emergency calls can range from broken bones to cardiac arrest. Collaborating with other ﬁrst responders is important to Jeremey, even if it means yielding to another provider. “We built a pretty good relationship with Glendo Ambulance. The communication is pretty good there, and it has to be. If they're on scene ﬁrst, obviously we need that radio transmission of them saying, “Hey, this is what's going on. This is what we might need.” At that point as the paramedic, I get to make the assessment of, “Okay, maybe we need to launch Life Flight. This is signiﬁcant enough to where we need that advanced level of care, where time is critical.”
Jeremey hasn’t always lived in Wyoming. Before serving in Converse County and the surrounding region, Jeremey served as both a ﬁreﬁghter and paramedic in Norfolk, Virginia. When asked about the diﬀerence in the areas of the country he has served with emergency medicine, Jeremey is quick to answer, “Coming out here and getting in more of the rural setting, you really have to rely on your skills even more, because it can be 35/40 miles from the hospital. You don't have the same amount of backup as you might in a larger system, so you really have to practice, practice, practice, to ensure that when you're out 35/40 miles from the hospital, and you've got a potential heart attack, stroke or a serious diabetic patient, that point you can't rely on others. You have to have a really good strong understanding of what you're doing as a clinician at that point.”
After living in Converse County for a few months, Jeremey realized there wasn’t Community ParaMedicine program in place to serve elder care patients. When asked to explain how patients could beneﬁt from Community ParaMedicine, Jeremey thoughtfully considers the welfare of those he serves. “This could be a very useful service in a community like this, where you have some significantly ill people, who could beneﬁt from someone to come in and check on them, make sure they have the right medications. Do they have enough food, are they able to keep their lights on, are they taking the right medications, do they have a primary care physician?” Jeremey decided to invest in himself, and the community by enrolling in online courses with Idaho State University.
After completing a one-year program, Jeremey earned a Community Paramedicine Certiﬁcate, which helped him better understand the social aspects of medicine. In addition to his completed coursework, Jeremey received a Community EMS Practitioner Certiﬁcate through the Wyoming state oﬃce of EMS, which allows him to operate on an advanced clinician level. Currently, Jeremey Littleton has become the Community EMS Coordinator and successfully launched the WEALTH Program in Converse County on February 12th. WEALTH stands for We Support Accessible, Long-Term Health Solutions. In his continued eﬀorts to implement this program in the region, Jeremey is coordinating the details with the Director of State EMS, who has recently developed a lengthy document to ensure they are in regulatory compliance state and federal government guidelines.
For someone who may be considering a career in the emergency services ﬁeld, the question was raised regarding the commitment required to serve others with emergency medicine. Jeremey stated, “I would say several hundred hours of multiple types of calls, is going to be really important in developing that strong baseline knowledge. Seeing a variety of diﬀerent calls before you really get comfortable enough to where you can say, “Yeah, I'm a clinician, I'm at the top of my ﬁeld.”