Tough job; big sat­is­fac­tion rate for Josie

Kapi-Mana News - - FRONT PAGE - KRIS DANDO

Some of Josie Cork­ery’s work sto­ries are doozies.

Due to the sen­si­tive nature of her work as a Welling­ton Free Am­bu­lance paramedic, many can only be re­peated with col­leagues.

But she is able to re­lay a re­cent visit that typ­i­fies the work she and the other Welling­ton Free paramedics do ev­ery day.

‘‘There was a 92-year-old lady who had ac­quired pneu­mo­nia,’’ Cork­ery said.

‘‘Her vi­tal signs were out­side the nor­mal ranges but she re­fused to go to hos­pi­tal.

‘‘I was able to is­sue a full treat­ment of an­tibi­otics and steroids and we saw her ev­ery day for the next four days. She made a full re­cov­ery and was in close con­tact with her GP as well.

‘‘It’s an ex­am­ple of that com­mu­nity care that peo­ple may not re­alise goes on ev­ery day.’’

Welling­ton Free Am­bu­lance at­tend about 50,000 in­ci­dents ev­ery year, many of which do not re­quire an am­bu­lance trip to the hos­pi­tal.

There were 283 calls for the ur­gent com­mu­nity care team in Porirua be­tween July 1 and Septem­ber 30 - the team con­sists of three full­time staff, one part time and re­liev­ers.

Cork­ery said the re­lief on the faces of some pa­tients who had called 111 and saw the Welling­ton Free car turn up, in­stead of an am­bu­lance, re­veals a lot.

‘‘The hos­pi­tal may be the best place for some, but of­ten we can treat peo­ple in their own home, which they pre­fer. ‘‘We can as­sess and then work in with other groups in the com- mu­nity for on­go­ing care. It takes the pres­sure off emer­gency de­part­ments and hos­pi­tals.’’

The 29-year-old, who has also spent time lately as the paramedic ad­viser in the 111 call cen­tre, said be­ing a paramedic in Porirua had chal­lenges, but also a high level of sat­is­fac­tion.

As part of a schol­ar­ship hon­our­ing for­mer paramedic An­drew Trues­dale, Cork­ery re­cently vis­ited the New South Wales Am­bu­lance Ser­vice to fur­ther her de­vel­op­ment.

She de­cided to be­come a paramedic af­ter a fam­ily mem­ber had a bad ac­ci­dent 13 years ago.

‘‘I just re­mem­ber feel­ing so help­less and was blown away see­ing how calm the paramedic was.

‘‘It stuck with me and I love that in this job you see peo­ple in ur­gent sit­u­a­tions and you can set the mood for their care.

‘‘It’s an in­cred­i­bly re­ward­ing job.’’

PHOTO: KRIS DANDO

Welling­ton Free Am­bu­lance paramedic Josie Cork­ery.

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