A professional is someone who voluntarily accepts the responsibilities inherent in his or her profession and evidence of professionalism is easily visible in all that he or she does.
This includes displaying a positive attitude towards patients and their families, treating all patients with respect and dignity regardless of their background or situation, and maintaining patient confidentiality at all times.
EMS providers should also strive to maintain a positive public image by presenting a professional appearance, being punctual and reliable, and adhering to ethical principles in all aspects of their work. This includes avoiding behaviors that could be perceived as unprofessional, such as gossiping or engaging in inappropriate relationships with patients or their families.
By demonstrating professionalism in their work, EMS providers can build trust with patients and their families, other healthcare providers, and the community at large. This can ultimately lead to better patient outcomes and a more effective EMS system overall.
Characteristics of a Professional
Some characteristics of professional behavior:
- Integrity - the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles.
- Empathy - the ability to understand and share the feelings of another.
- Self-Motivation - motivation to do or achieve something because of one's own enthusiasm or interest without needing pressure from others.
- Appearance and hygiene - Attention to detail in hygiene and appearance reinforces others' confidence in your attention to detail in all other areas.
- Self-confidence - a feeling of trust in one's abilities, qualities, and judgment.
- Knowledge of limitations - be honest with yourself about what you can do and augment your own knowledge and resources when appropriate.
- Time Management - the ability to use one's time effectively.
- Communications - The recognition and efficient exchange of important information, whether verbal or written.
- Teamwork - Fight the desire to make yourself look good. Acknowledge and appreciate the efforts of others. Put the team ahead of yourself.
- Respect/Tact/Diplomacy - There are a lot of people involved, and there are a lot of feelings. Tread carefully. It's a skill you must develop in order to be most effective as a caregiver. Treat patients, co-workers, and other healthcare professionals with respect.
- Patient advocacy - You are the patient's medical representative, and you are charged to act in the best interest of the medical needs of your patient.
- Careful delivery of service.
In order to maintain certifications, the provider is responsible for himself, keeping his own nose clean, keeping up with continuing education, skill competency verifications, and any fees associated with maintaining these certifications.