Lt. Frank Borello, EMS Lieutenant Local 3621 Photo: Clarence Elie-Rivera
I would tell any person considering a career with Emergency Medical Services that it’s a great job because you have an opportunity to impact someone’s life in a positive way.
I’ve helped deliver 13 babies, intervened with people having cardiac arrest and diabetic emergencies. It’s such a rewarding experience.
One time a man was having a massive stroke. He couldn’t move the right side of his body and was having trouble speaking. He was combative and in denial. But that happens often. People have the right to make that decision and refuse to be taken to the hospital.
It’s unpredictable what might happen when you show up. But his wife was with him, so she convinced him to let us take him to the hospital. He’s a business owner and one of his employees noticed he was acting strange and called 911.
I spent my first five years with the department working in Bedford-Stuyvesant as an Emergency Medical Technician. The neighborhood has changed a lot since then. There are more upscale restaurants and things like that, but we still get a lot of calls.
I was a student at the New York City School of Technology in Brooklyn, studying to become a printer. My father suggested I take the civil service test, so I went and got the application and I started studying at night to become an EMT. I worked as an EMT from 1992 to 1997. Then, in 1997, I became a Paramedic.
We receive great training from the Fire Dept. I’ve mentored many new people.
The more time you spend on the job, the more street smart you become, and you learn how to deal better with the violence and the negativity. But you see a lot more good on the job than bad.