We are a group of people in and around the Philadelphia area. We are trained street medics, nurses, EMT’s, wilderness first responders, artists, herbalists, trauma counselors and generally people interested in the health and well being of our communities. Members of this collective have been involved with providing medical support at direct action, activist camps, street protests, and disaster relief situations. Please take a look at our Points of Unity to learn more about our values and the ways in which we organize.More resources for taking care of yourself and others coming soon!
POINTS OF UNITY:
+ We affirm that demystifying and democratizing health care skills and reducing our dependence on profit-driven medicine and police-involved emergency response is vital to building long lasting movements for Liberation in our lifetime.
+ We acknowledge that the idea of “safety” is relative and complicated
+ We believe in building interdependent ways of being with one another that do not replicate the oppression that isolates us in the first place. We see our work as acknowledging and resisting intersecting systems of oppression — both in the world and in our relations with one another.
+ We believe in the principles of harm reduction and practice and support diverse forms of healing that are consistent with each individuals understanding of their own needs and values.
+ We believe our liberation is tied to that of others and we take on this work in solidarity with collective resistance.
+ In all these above points we stand in solidarity with the evolving international traditions of street medics.
CODE OF CONDUCT:
1. We do no harm. We make every reasonable effort to give treatment that will not negatively affect the health or wellbeing of our patients. If no such treatment is available, no treatment whatsoever is given.
2. We work only within our own individual scope of practice, while trusting and respecting the abilities of the other medics in their work. We explicitly inform patients of our own qualifications and limitations.
3. We obtain clear and explicit consent from our patients and anyone affected by our care for every action we take as medics, including any physical contact or while performing any procedure. If a patient in an emergency situation is unable to offer consent for treatment, as through a lack of consciousness, we strive to take whatever action we believe is most essential to their wellbeing. We respect patients’ right to refuse any treatment, advice or transport to any medical facility.
4. We maintain our work areas as Safer Spaces, and actively challenge the perpetuation of any form of social domination or oppression. This includes, but is not at all limited to sexism, racism, transphobia, ableism, classism, ageism, and other forms of oppression. We cultivate an awareness of our own privilege and work to create a welcoming, safe and comfortable space for all, while directly calling attention to any actions of other medics that perpetuate oppression.
5. We respect and actively protect the privacy of our patients’ and the confidentiality of their treatment to the greatest extent possible. Without our patients’ consent, we do not allow photography, videography, audio recording, or any other non private record of our patients’ care.
6. We practice exceptional sanitation and hygiene in our work as medics and in our working areas. This includes using appropriate protocols of Standard Precautions and Body Substance Isolation (BSI) in caring for patients through gloves and other means, as well as thoroughly washing and/or sanitizing hands, surfaces, supplies and containers when they may be contaminated. If a medic suspects that they may currently host any readily transmissible disease, they do not act as a medic until the risk of transmission is abated.
7. We maintain a continuity of care for all of our patients. We do not leave or cease caring for any patient until a treatment is completed, except to transfer the patient’s care to another medic of equal or greater qualification – or to prioritize the immediate and urgent care of a different patient in emergent need, when no other assistance is available.
8. We organize ourselves horizontally, without institutional hierarchies of command, experience, credentials, ability or level of involvement. Every medic has equal power in all decisions affecting them.
9. When acting as medics, we remain neutral. The primary role of a marked medic is to provide care for the injured or ill. We do not attempt to direct the actions or personal choices of anyone else for any tactical or political purpose. We do not participate in any ideological or political action while marked as a medic..
10. While working as a medic, we recognize our responsibility to maintain a positive and calm atmosphere.While on duty, our interactions with patients’, other medics, and passersby are guided by trust, respect and solidarity, in the same way that those qualities are essential to our own standing in the community. Rather than telling others to do something, we ask them. We request rather than command. Patients in our care are treated respectfully and are spoken to or with. We do not gossip about or judge any patients in our care.
11. We all benefit from an orderly, clean working space, and we all contribute to keeping it in that condition. If we reorganize any materials in a medical space, we make every reasonable effort to inform the other medics of those changes.
12. We do not use intoxicating substances while on duty and we do not tolerate the use of intoxicants or smoked tobacco in any medical space.
13. We are all capable of learning and improving our skills, and recognize that we all make mistakes. Each of us remains accountable to any guidance or correction, and we receive the input or critique of other medics respectfully, with good faith that our common goal is to provide the best possible care.
14. We understand that when anyone is marked as a medic, they are considered to be on active duty, and their behavior is accountable to this code of conduct. Should we wish to act outside of the principles in this code, we remove all markings or other indications of our role as a medic beforehand. If any medic acts outside of this code, they may be held accountable to the other members of this group, local medical protocols, and to the respective community.