A New Orleans paramedic posts on Reddit that the City has "abandoned" its Emergency Medical Services. The paramedic, using the handle Nolamedic1, claims that "it is not uncommon to have 6-7 ambulances covering the entire city at night."
They paint a dire picture of residents' lifeline:
The sick and dying are waiting for ambulances that may not arrive for hours. Our staffing and budget is a fraction of NOPD. Our hourly wages have stagnated. We are attacked, spit on, and threatened on a daily basis and receive no hazard compensation. Not an extra cent was seen for showing up throughout the entire COVID pandemic. We often have to lie and say we are using the bathroom so we can eat.
When we arrive at your residence or at the location of an emergency we are questioned as to why we took so long. We more than likely just cleared from the hospital to respond to the next call with no time in between. Or we responded all the way to the East from Algiers.
Call volume is at an all time high. It is not uncommon to have 10-15 911 calls holding, with no available units to respond at any given time.
The paramedic points out the irony of a reality TV show boasting the effectiveness of New Orleans EMS while providing "no funding or public service".
The paramedic concludes with a plea for media coverage on the issue:
The system is collapsing and the work load is unsustainable. Co workers are riddled with mental health concerns. Things are difficult for us all in the present climate. A good job is hard to come by. The workers and the patients they encounter deserve better. What will it take for things to change? Can we have our pleas heard for the citizens of this city to understand? Anyone with connections to news media outlets please reach out. For their sake and ours. We all deserve better.
In the comments, other healthcare professionals add that they are burnt out and note their colleagues leaving in droves.
A resident of the Marigny posts under the handle croque-monsieur:
Nurse here. We are leaving in droves too. If not leaving the bedside then leaving the city to take travel contracts to make a quick buck. I’m personally ready to leave the profession after being less than 10 years in.