I still remember the first day of working in the Rescue Team --- the person in charge of Rescue Team brought me to meet my team leader and other team members, then I began to work with them on the ambulance. I had never imagined what cases I would encounter and how much I would learn/ help in the following 30 days. But now, I would like to say, the experience of being a rescue team member inspired me a lot and I would never forget what I learnt from the team.
Working on the ambulance with my team, I had seen cases of car accidents, patients feeling sick, fires, alcoholism, gun shooting etc., which I was not really familiar with. At first, I was not sure what I could help because I did not have any real-life experiences on first-aid skills. At the same time, due to language barrier, I could seldom understand what the patients nor my team members was talking about that I could only stood on one side and tried my best to observe how they treated the patients. Fortunately, all of my team members were very nice that they would try hard to communicate with me during “stand-by periods” --- using extremely simple English and Thai words, as well as body language. They introduced to me different rescue equipment on the ambulance and showed me how to use them when needed. With their help, I quickly got used to my working environment and eventually I clearly knew what I could do in different accidental scenes. It was a good experience to apply what I learnt before into real life situations to help others.
Being a rescue team member is not an easy job. Although we were sometimes “free” if there was no cases, the working hour was quite long that all the members had to stay at the Rescue Station to stand-by. I also joined the night shift working in the second half of the month. It was an interesting experience to work at night but also sometimes tiring if there were many cases throughout the night. I still remember the most tiring last day duty --- we handled 4 cases from 00:00 to 06:00, which means once we got back to the Rescue Station and fell asleep for just half an hour, we were waken up again for another case. Anyway, I enjoyed every moment working there with my team. This is a valuable experience for me, as a medical student, to get used to seeing all those cases, knowing the pre-hospital treatment procedures and getting a taste of working in the medical field. And I believe what I have learnt from this volunteering program can probably be used in the future for helping more people.