JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – After the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, the Federal Emergency Management Agency entered into a contract with American Medical Response. In times of disaster, terror or public health emergency, AMR sends teams where they are needed most. 12 News caught with a local EMT who just returned from more than month at ground zero for Covid-19 in America.
It’s a long way from Utica, Mississippi to Queens, New York, especially, during a pandemic. Emergency Medical Technician Lauren Stubblefield has relatives back East. When she heard what they were up against, she knew she had to help. The New York City Fire Department’s EMS system was bending under intense pressure.
Lauren explains, “So, we went up and provided both interfacility transport and basic and advanced 9-11 support in their system. We were plugged directly into New York Fire. We carried a New York Fire radio, a New York Fire CAT system, and they dispatched us as one of their own.”
What a way to spend your second semester of paramedic school. AMR paired her with 28 year veteran.
Lauren remembers, “It was everything from people who were just having a bad day, an anxiety attack, to cardiac arrests, to patients who were suspected or positive for Covid who needed to be transported.”
FDNY welcomed the Volunteer Firefighter with open arms.
She says, “It was really profound to watch the city go from almost total lockdown to some sense of normalcy, it still wasn’t normal when we left, but it was definitely more normal than when we got there.”
Lauren did more than her part, and we’ll all be that much better for it.
She concludes, “I just hope that when I get finished with school this Summer and pass my registry, that it’ll make me a more compassionate and more adaptable clinician in the field.”
We said, “I think there’s a good chance you’re going to pass this test.”
Lauren responded, “Thanks, I hope so.”
Lauren is quick to point out that the pandemic is far from over. Hand washing, social distancing and facemasks are still critically important, if we ever want to get through this thing.