Caring for Injured First Responders
“If you want to touch the past, touch a rock. If you want to touch the present, touch a flower. If you want to touch the future, touch a life.” ~Author unknown
First Responders—Military Personnel, Firefighters, Law Enforcement, Paramedics and other emergency personnel— willingly subject themselves to extreme physical and emotional stresses that few outside of their profession can understand to touch lives every day. That’s what they signed up to do, many times fulfilling a childhood dream to become a firefighter or police officer or highway patrol or sheriff’s deputy or paramedic or EMT or...
When we dial 911, we take it for granted that they will be there for us. Who is there for them when they are injured in the line of duty? And believe me, they are hurt frequently, and all too often with injuries that they carry with them well after they leave their service careers. Some injuries are visible, many are not. But all of them were incurred voluntarily in the service of others.
The late Dr. Jeffrey Stevenson devoted his practice to the care of first responders and became a passionate and outspoken advocate for their physical and mental health. When he died tragically in a bicycle crash in December 2018, his unique practice caring for these heros was in jeopardy. After meeting some of his patients at his memorial service, I knew that I had to continue where he left off.
As a result, I have made the same commitment as Dr. Stevenson to serve as the primary treating physician for any current or retired first responder (fire, law enforcement, EMS, etc) injured in the line of duty who chooses to entrust his or her care to me and my team. I am credentialed with most of the major worker’s compensation insurance companies in California including State Fund (SCIF), the carrier for the California Highway Patrol.