LANSING, Mich. — It only takes a minute to make a difference in a patient’s care or life. That is exactly what the staff at McLaren Greater Lansing’s Emergency Department gives to every emergency medical services (EMS) worker when they bring in a critical patient. This “medic minute” gives the EMS worker time to properly hand off a patient, which ensures the patient receives the best care from the time they arrive at the hospital until the time they go home.
“I always give every EMS worker a medic minute for each patient,” said Bea Yohannes, RN in the emergency department at McLaren Greater Lansing. “It gives me the chance to learn a lot about the patient, including vitals, allergies, major concerns, and any medicines that have already been given to the patient.”
The EMS workers can also provide hospital staff with valuable information from the scene, including living conditions, support in the household, and safety concerns.
“The patient’s care is our number one priority,” said Christine Perry, MD, physician in the emergency department at McLaren Greater Lansing. “The medic minute improves our ability to provide the best patient care and strengthens our relationship with the EMS workers. The goal is to work together for the common good.”
When there is a critical patient that comes in, the physician or primary nurse will silence the room and support staff by stating, “It’s time for the medic minute.” This allows EMS to know it’s time to report and they have the full attention of primary physician and nurse who needs to hear the EMS report.
“I have a unique perspective on the medic minute, since I have been on both sides,” said Sam Weber, RN in the emergency department at McLaren Greater Lansing and paramedic for Meridian Township. “It is so important that the health care workers at the hospital know what information has already been provided by the patient or family and what work has been done to the patient, especially if the patient isn’t able to relay that information themselves.”
While some may think that a minute isn’t enough time to make a different in a patient’s care, the medic minute can save a patient from receiving the same interventions, eliminate the need to repeat medical information, and ensure that nothing gets missed. Even though it’s only a minute, it can make a big impact.