Newest Paramedics Learn On the Job With Hospital/EMS
Posted on Wednesday, September 8th, 2010
Paramedics Ready to Roll
Chance Weger (l), Chase Weger, and Teresa Tow, Mercy Health/Love County EMS/fire brigade, are the service’s latest paramedic graduates. Chance Weger was co-salutatorian of the class of 23.
Three more emergency medical technicians (EMT-Basics) have completed their paramedic education with Mercy Health/Love County EMS.
Teresa Tow, Chase Weger, and Chance Weger graduated in July, the second class of the only EMS-based paramedic education program in Oklahoma.
Lisa Dyer, paramedic instructor at Kiamichi Technology Center in Poteau, provided 18 months of lectures to them through two-way videoconferencing at the hospital’s training center. They also earned 45 hours of academic credit through Oklahoma State University.
John Gilliam and Natasha West, hospital/EMS training officers, administered 400 hours of skills training and coordinated the program.
The graduates expressed a combination of relief and gratitude.
“It’s great to have this over with, but I feel really fortunate to have an employer help pay for our education and provide training at work,” said Chance Weger, a member of the EMS crew at WinStar Casino (station 2).
His twin brother, Chase, a member of the fire brigade at station 2, goes out with the back-up ambulance on calls to WinStar properties and southern Love County.
Both joined the EMS/fire brigade two years ago. It’s a family passion. Their older cousin, Ryan Weger, is also a paramedic and firefighter.
At EMS station 1 in Marietta, Tow described an “intensive” 18 months. “I had one night a week at home. Otherwise, I was in class, going on ambulance calls at work, or picking up hours of clinical practice at emergency rooms, labs, and other EMS agencies in the area.”
She has been in emergency services for eight years, starting as a dispatcher in Ardmore.
“It gets in your blood. You pick up really sick people and see them go home from the hospital. You can’t imagine doing anything else.”
Chance Weger was recognized as co-salutatorian of the class. A total of 23 of 36 videoconferencing students from around the state who started the rigorous program graduated, said Dyer.
The latest graduates bring to 18 the number of paramedics in the 27-member EMS/fire brigade, according to Tad Hall, PA, manager of the hospital emergency room/EMS/fire brigade.
The next paramedic class will get underway in February 2011. The pre-requisite is emergency medical technician (EMT-Basic).
Further information about all the training courses offered by the hospital/EMS is available by calling West at 276-3347, ext. 259 or at the EMS web site, www.lovecountyems.net.
Chase Weger, Teresa Tow, Chance Weger