Inside EMS Podcast: Why the flu shot matters for EMS

Hosts Chris Cebollero and Kelly Grayson discuss keeping providers and patients healthy this flu season, and remind us that they’ll be taking calls for a live podcast on Dec. 29 at 5 p.m. CST

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In this week’s Inside EMS Podcast, hosts Chris Cebollero and Kelly Grayson discuss flu season, and keeping the workforce safe.  

“What distresses me is that so many people, even in EMS, think that the flu shot gives you the flu,” Grayson said.

Cebollero agreed, saying parents who don’t give their kids flu shots also contribute to the problem of vaccine denial in general. As a result, diseases such as the measles, whooping cough and mumps are making a return.

“We’re losing our herd immunity, and they don’t grasp that concept,” Grayson said. “We’re starting to see diseases we thought we had pretty much eradicated, and now we’re having outbreaks, right here in a first world nation.”

They also stressed the importance of wearing masks in EMS to protect both patients and providers, and the simple act of frequent hand washing and cleaning equipment – all aspects of good infection control that should be practiced outside of flu season as well.

In the news, they talk about a D.C. Fire and EMS investigation into why it took 22 minutes to respond to a man who died, which the union blamed on location glitches with dispatch technology

“The way to fix these problems is not to bash each other and blame it all on leadership and blame it all on dispatch,” Grayson said.

They also discuss a Philadelphia paramedic who came under fire for an Instagram post that shows two black men pointing guns at the head of a white police officer. 

“We have to remember that regardless of is we’re off duty, but we still represent our organizations, and we can’t put defaming posts on our [social media] page that will bring disgrace or bring disrespect not only to our career fields, but to our departments,” Cebollero said. 

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