Without evidence of benefit, an intervention should not be presumed to be beneficial or safe.

- Rogue Medic

Is it Good When Everybody Responds for a Call Involving Police/Fire/EMS?


Last week on EMS Office Hours, Jim Hoffman, Josh Knapp, and Dave Brenner discussed a variety of topics before I got on the show. We had a bit of disagreement about whether everyone should be sent for police/fire/EMS patients.

EMS Rapid Fire | October 2013

Where is the evidence that there is a benefit to these patients?

If we are just putting on a show, we are fooling ourselves. Why can’t we be honest?

Why do we deserve such a show?

Does this show improve outcomes?

History has documented numerous cases of a pervasive medical problem come to be known as “The VIP Syndrome.” The entrance of a VIP or celebrity challenges the normal practices of physicians and their institutions. The result of treating VIPs differently than “common individuals” can sometimes be catastrophic. By not adhering to common practice guidelines, physicians risk compromising their basic powers of perception, judgement, and treatment. The “VIP Syndrome” is not well known in the medical community. This poses a risk to every health care institution encountering a VIP in a medical treatment setting.[1]


When we treat patients differently because of their status (MOS – Member Of Service), we are treating them as VIPs, which is harmful to the patients we are trying to help.

We need to understand what we are doing – rather than make a show out of doing something.

We need to be honest about the ways we are treating our patients and the ethical aspects of our actions.

Go listen to the podcast.


[1] Executive Health Care in the Air Force
Corporate Author : Air Univ Maxwell AFB AL
Personal Author(s) : Simpson, Carl G.
PDF Url : ADA397186
Report Date : APR 1998
Web page with link to Download in PDF format.


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