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Codes

Remember your first code?  That time when you see that first patient under your care go into respiratory or cardiac arrest?  Haven't had one yet?  It will come, soon enough.

Responding to a code takes some training.  Simulation has gone a long way in helping new healthcare providers respond better to that first emergency.  It doesn't mean that first time doesn't make you freeze up; make you cold with fear that whatever you do will not be enough; of having to talk to the family, comfort them if things do not go well.

Any emergency response requires training.  Anyone who thinks that in the face of danger, they will respond heroically and with a clear head has never actually been in that kind of situation.  Ask any soldier who has gone through battle and many will tell you the first time in the face of real danger did not necessarily go as they had been told in training.  They did not necessarily respond as they thought they would, as they would have wished.

It is the fallacy of an emergency response; of any response to danger confronting us; of the fact that we cannot know how good our emergency or disaster response plan is until it has to be executed.  Our egos assume that we will respond to thwart the danger.  In reality, many of us freeze up, act in ways we did not expect.  Sometimes with bravery, sometimes with paralysis.

The NRA's main argument is that if everyone owns guns, things like what happened in Newtown, CT will not happen anymore.  It makes a huge assumption that gun ownership will provide you with a clear head in an emergency, like a school shooting or the highly unlikely incident that someone breaks into a home while someone is at home.

A healthcare provider responding to a code in a hospital has a lot of "guns" at their disposal to deal with the "intruders" causing the danger.  They have training on how to handle the situation.  At the same time, the first time for anyone does not mean that they will respond effectively to deal with the intruder.  It requires a team to respond.  But armed response teams in every school and public place in America are a costly and stupid response.

Ask anyone in their first crisis situation, the case it would be for most people facing an armed intruder in a home, a school, or other location: That first time you have to respond you never act how you might think. That is the major fallacy behind most gun arguments in the US.  It assumes that people will actually respond the way they think, that guns will make them braver and keep their heads clear in an awful, unexpected situation.

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