Saturday, 4 June 2011

Lots been going on this week!

RECAP: Tuesday our case work program underwent a massive upgrade, which had the system shut down around the world for several hours, meaning emergency messages all over the world were at a standstill. When the system came back up there were several changes to the program which caused caseworkers all over the world much confusion. The result between the shut down and the confusion has been an astronomical number of cases these last few days. On Thursday night there were 23 cases at one time in our queue waiting to be delivered. Absolutely unheard of on my three deployments... I typically do 23 cases over the course of my nine hour shift! To make matters more confusing, the reference numbers assigned to the cases pre-update started with 288- followed by four more numbers, say 2881234. But once the system went back up after the upgrade they restarted at 0. This has interestingly caused mass confusion all over Afghanistan as brigades think they have been given the wrong case numbers and the military airports who schedule seats for emergency leave think the messages are fake! Goodness.

Another story for you, I did a Medivac last night. It was an average sized mission, 8 ambulatory, 6 litters, 2 Ckats, but I had an awful experience with one of the Ckats. Normally Ckats are unconscious, because they are on life support but tonight one of them was awake. I was inside the bus, loading them from the people on the outside of the bus and then securing them to the walls of the bus. I was at this patients head with another air force MedEvac attendant with two other people at this feet when we went to "rack" him (secure the litter to the side of the bus). Both head and feet are supposed to rack at the same time, but this time the feet got into the rack first and normally I would be able to get my handle in without much fuss, even if we didn't rack simultaneously, but unfortunately this guy had huge casts on his feet and another on his left arm, the arm up against the wall. Because of his casts, we couldn't get our end to rack and then the guy started yelling in pain which was absolutely horrible. He was yelling about his foot being in pain, but actually it was the cast on his arm that was preventing the litter from sliding into place. The flight nurse actually had to come over and readjust his arm cast so that we could get the litter in and none of this was our fault, but Jesus, knowing our actions were causing this guy to bellow in pain made me want to vomit :-(

Finally, we took incoming today which was a bit unnerving since I heard a huge boom of impact, and waited for the sirens to off, but when they didn't I thought maybe it was fire from the artillery range. 10 mins later the sirens go off and it's bunker time, but seriously 10 mins later??? Not comforting. Afterwards, I took the car out to run some errands and there were three Blackhawks circling low over one of the villages, I can only assume the two events were related. Also, we found out today that the unit behind our office had four Killed in Action (KIA) today. We were told their ramp ceremony (Fallen Hero Ceremony) will be sometime tomorrow which we hope to attend. It's also Egyptian Hospital day tomorrow!

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