Virginia Beach volunteer rescue squads a hub of service, hands-on learning for EVMS students

Call comes in, and that
siren goes off overhead. And we can be sent
anywhere into anything. Everything from resuscitate
cardiac arrest victims to deliver babies. I’m just going to lift your arm. I’m sorry. I’m a volunteer paramedic
with the Virginia Beach rescue squad. It’s the largest volunteer
based EMS system in the country. Sir, we’re going
to move you, OK? There’s a lot of great
students at EVMS who volunteer. There’s a EVMS student every
MD class and every PA class. We do 48 hours a semester. It’s a tremendous amount of
time in addition to studying and having a family life. It’s a remarkable,
remarkable thing and that is the passion of
the volunteers in our system. When I volunteer with
the rescue squad, it helps me remember
why I’m doing what I’m doing and
understand the medicine and how it impacts patients. You’re there to help them
in their moment of need. There’s nothing like
the feeling of being able to answer that call. It’s exciting you have a
lot of adrenaline going, so you are able to do things
you wouldn’t necessarily expect that you’re able to do. The biggest thing is
just that drive to serve. Feeling like I am
doing something to give back to the community. And now it’s more so here. I want to be that person
taking care of the patient. Any history of cardiac
problems in your family? It’s another great clinical
exposure where you never know what’s coming,
so you have to be prepared to deal with anything. I’m going to put some
stickers on your chest, sir, so I can take a
look at your heart. Having that EVMS
connection makes us that much greater because
we have that much more skill and education.

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