This has been a busy month with Nurses Week, Emergency Preparedness Week, Police Week and EMS Week. As a nurse involved with crisis work based in a community setting, I have learned the value in collaboration and team work. I am fortunate to have colleagues and friends in each of these disciplines. While we may have different roles and responsibilities, we share many common goals.
When a nurse works strictly within a nursing team, there are limitations to practice. I require assistance from community partners on a daily basis. This is of particular importance in crisis intervention. There are times when my personal safety has been in question and I have needed the assistance of police officers. There are also times when my trusting relationship and knowledge of a client's history has assisted police officers during an intervention.
On any given day, I am also interacting with EMS. Nurses in the community simply are not able to address all of the medical emergencies we encounter. Many times, we call 911 and may accompany our clients in the ambulance to the ER. Again, our relationship with the client, knowledge of their medical history etc. can be an asset to EMS. Last summer during the hottest days, I was very grateful for the timely assistance of EMS when members of our homeless community were experiencing heat related emergencies.
Emergency Preparedness is essential for all front line workers. Open communication across our teams is of great importance. Our use of social media has brought many of us together and created ways to process information as well as public safety alerts within minutes.
Within our own disciplines we are very familiar with our roles and responsibilities. I am however becoming increasingly aware that with effective collaboration between teams we are able to bridge gaps in care. This will lead to even greater service for our clients. Thank you to all my emergency services colleagues and front line workers who are helping to keep our communities safe and healthy.