Something I wrote and published nearly a quarter of a year ago. Seems like the first posts have been buried under a plethora of other/newer posts now and seems like now people have forgotten about this work thats supposed to be useful so I decided to repost it.
Also Available At: http://caimartinjg.blogspot.com/p/a-medics-guide-to-medical-roleplay.html
A PATIENT’S GUIDE TO MEDICAL ROLEPLAY
By Martin J.G. “Marty” Cai (CaiMartinJG)
Written: 21 February 2014
Last Edit: 02 March 2014
Also Available At: bitly.com/NfWoIf
Oftentimes, roleplayers will find themselves in a position where their characters will be in need of medical attention-but will struggle with coming up with quality posts while roleplaying with the EMT’s and Hospital Staff who respond to their character’s calls. Many times, especially when a character is unconscious or just laying there getting treated, it can be very difficult for the roleplayer to come up with much to write. This guide will provide tips to aid the player whose unfortunate character will end up in the hands of some medical professional in creating longer, quality, more interesting and more realistic posts while conducting some form of medical roleplay.
1. Inform a newly arriving medic of your characters condition in the first post he/she may read. The first thing any medic will do when (s)he comes upon your character would be to look him/her over and get a determination of your characters injuries/symptoms/extent. Oftentimes the medic will even send you an IM and ask you OOCly what they will come upon when they look over your character. In your first post with a medic, include a detailed description of your characters current state when the medics comes upon him/her, include: what injuries you have and their extent, symptoms and extent, anything other rescuers/good Samaritans may have done to change the status of your injuries/symptoms-if they had made things better or worse, and whatever else may be pertinent. You may also want to let your rescuers know at this time any special requests or specifications of your roleplay-for example, if you would like a detailed roleplay at the EMS level or something more cursory-as many times, a patient will prefer the EMS level to be done quickly as it is the intermediate between a long roleplay that resulted in the patients injury and another long roleplay to come-at hospital. As much as possible, you may also want to find out (if you haven’t already done so) beforehand how exactly your character will realistically
2. Describe your characters response to the medic’s treatment. In almost all cases, when a medic treats a patient-the patient will almost invariably get better immediately and because patients seldom ever post how their characters are responding to the treatment, medics will almost invariably assume that the patients are responding as intended-otherwise-if a medic starts to roleplay that their patient is deteriorating, their patient may get upset with them and call them out for powergaming. There is several things wrong with this. First off-a medic should never have to assume/decide how another’s character will respond to something-according to the most basic of roleplay conventions, only the player of a character has the right to determine what happens to their characters. Secondly-it is very unrealistic that every patient, every time, responds as intended to treatment. Sadly, in real life, many times, despite a medic’s best efforts, a patient may not always get better, and sometimes will continue to get worst unless the medics step up their efforts. The more serious a patients condition is, the more likely they will refuse to get better or deteriorate despite a medic’s best attempts to treat. Sometimes, it is the medic’s treatment that will cause a patient’s injuries/symptoms to get worst, or create additional injuries/symptoms for the patient. CPR for example, will often mean that a patient’s rib bones breaking, and intubation will often result in the patient having a sore throat and having difficulty speaking for days to come after the breathing tube’s removal. Sometimes, such as in the case of setting a broken bone prior to splinting it-a medic might even have to cause more pain in order to relieve pain-in such and other similar cases-a medic should make indications in his/her posts hinting (not dictating) the effect his/her treatment may have on his/her patient. Every drug has its possible side effects, almost all drugs carry the risk of nausea/vomiting, yet most patients seldom every play out more than the intended effects of medication administered by a medic. In most cases, there should be at least some sort of response. Make the roleplay interesting-and while you’re at it, prolong it as well-give the medic’s extra surprise challenges along the way. Make the roleplay suspenseful-make it seem like a drag before your character starts to get better, make it seem uncertain for some time if your character will get better or not. Better yet, bring your character to the brink of death before allowing him/her to improve his/her condition-this is not to say though, by deteriorating your patient, you will necessarily have to ultimately roleplay permanent damage you did not intend originally or have to kill your character.
3. Interact with the medic treating your character especially if your character is conscious and able to. Roleplay is not about one person posting how their medic character would treat a patient-it is about creating stories through different character’s interactions with each other. Medics are supposed to talk to their patients and keep them informed on what they’re doing to their patients, even when the patient is clearly not conscious a medic is trained to continue to speak to them when otherwise possible. Medics are also supposed to keep a conscious patient awake and alert and will oftentimes ask patients to keep talking to them, especially asking about a patient’s condition-how a patient is feeling, where they are hurting, how they are doing, any new symptoms/changes in condition, etc. When possible, a medic might even start to make some small talk to distract his/her patient from the pain, to keep the patient awake and alert. Obviously, respond to the medic and respond fully, as much as possible-talk to the medic. Whine, complain. It would make sense that your character would be whining and complaining, crying and begging the medic-after all, most likely your character would be in a lot of pain by the time (s)he meets the medic, and on top of that, a lot of times the medic’s treatment can not only be invasive-but the medic’s treatment, while it is well intended, will cause some more pain before it starts to help. It might even make sense for your character to want and maybe even try to resist and fight off the well-intending medic. Something like this, realistically, isn’t all too uncommon at all when it comes to RL. The treatment may be anything but fun, your character may be petrified of the hospital, your character may be trying to detox and wouldn’t want the medic to administer life-sustaining medication that might get your character hooked to drugs again. Remember, it is now very unlikely that your character is anyhow in a good mood. Make a special request of the medic. Your character may want the medic to do a certain something to help them out of his/her misery, may want a certain person notified, may need to arrange for childcare, or may want a blankie if (s)he is cold.
4. Follow up with the medics once your character is feeling better. Chances are, especially if you have a character with even somewhat of a decent heart, realistically, your character would be at least quite appreciative if not feeling indebted to the medic who saved his/her life, ran to your characters aide while everyone else ran away horrified, and was by your character’s side the whole time during what would probably be some of the worst times in your characters life. Next time you see the medic out on the street off duty, go over to him/her, give him/her a big hug, say thank you, maybe even buy him/her a drink or two. See them making rounds in the hospital-call them over, and say thank you or whatnot (and EMT’s even during off times or right after they drop off a patient will head to the recovery ward and make rounds, check up on and catch up with patients they have previously brought in). Have nothing to do and notice that your rescuer is online and in the hospital/station-feel free to head over to the station and bring flowers, chocolates, or some other thank you gift. In any case, once your character gets to this point, chances are, (s)he is going to feel a special bond when it comes to his/her rescuers. Jump on that-play it out realistically-who knows what sorta friendship/storyline may ultimately result from one rescue.
5. Follow up with the consequences/effects of the injury/illness on your character. Oftentimes, a roleplayer’s character will get hurt, seek treatment, stay in hospital, and soon after the roleplayer will almost nearly forget about the entire incident aside from perhaps seeking revenge or noting it in a pick describing their character of a certain physical scar. Unfortunately, realistically, it’s not that easy at all to just heal and then shrug off the event like it almost never happened, it’s not that easy at all to just forget after a short bit. Chances are-anything that will result in an ambulance ride and/or the hospital will be traumatic, and the more traumatic something is, the more profound of an effect it might have on your character, the more time it will take to heal both physically and emotionally, and the less likely your character will be able to just move on from it soon. Sometimes, the physical scars might go away after a while, but mental/emotional scars tend to take a lot longer. There’s an entire whirlwind, quite a wide range, of emotions your character might feel after a traumatic event. Appreciation-both towards rescuer’s (as mentioned above) and maybe even towards a higher power or for life in general-and this may end up making your character more religious. Similarly, your character might become quite angry-perhaps even at the same time-towards those responsible for the trauma, and once again towards a higher power, people, or life in general-your character might become far less religious, and perhaps much more withdrawn and tough towards others in this case. That anger might also lead to crime/an increase tendency towards violence. Grief, PTSD, increased anxiety, and fear might happen as well. All of these might also lead to alcoholism or other forms of drug abuse. In sum, there is a wide range of ways your character might be suddenly altered mentally and emotionally, and what combo of effects your character might feel depends on both your character’s nature and the circumstances of the trauma-you’ll prolly need to do some homework-research, consideration, etc-in order to make a good choice of what might result as it is on a case by case basis. Additionally, while most times physical scars heal faster than emotional ones-those don’t always heal either and certainly most likely not immediately after you leave the doctor’s/hospital. Yes, injuries in most RP’s tend to heal much quicker than in RL-but they don’t go away immediately either. Chances are you’re not going to leave the doc’s or hospital fully healed, and there’ll be something left for a few days even though you’ll be mostly healed by then. Spice up the rp immediately after a bit-have your character go around in crutches, or a cast, maybe even a wheelchair, if not limping or otherwise weakened for a few days after your character gets out-it may just be interesting, and certainly a lot more realistic.
In the status quo (in other words, the time before/during when this guide was first written) it has been noticed that patients’ rp (as a whole) tends to be very repetitive and in some ways, uninteresting to the person who deals with patients on a daily basis and in a way, even unrealistic. It is the hope in writing this guide that after reading this, you will find this guide helpful in improving your patient RP quality, in making your patient RP far more interesting, fun, and realistic. Good luck, happy rp’ing, and once again, hope it helps!
Marty Cai (caimartinjg) is a distinguished ParaRoleplayer predominantly playing on SecondLife. Cai has served in several leadership positions on several sims, including serving as Hospital Administrator ((Medical Group Leader)) in a popular SL Roleplay Community for six months and after that serve as a moderator while helping some friends establish their own roleplay community. Cai is also moderated for an aspiring, World-of-Darkness Roleplay sim with predominantly heavy roleplayers like Cai himself as members. After that, Cai joined the Lansing Fire Department in December 2013 and very soon thereafter he was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant and placed in charge of that department’s EMS Operations, he served in that position for about two weeks and then was once again promoted this time to the rank of Deputy Chief of Operations, in which post he currently serves now, and is consistently receiving positive remarks and ratings from both members of the Lansing community, his crew, as well as his chief. Circa June 2013 Cai had the honour of being recruited for the management team of an SL RP sim for elite players only, enticed with the opportunity to meet the best of the best like him and make excellent connections. Cai predominantly plays in emergency services roles such as Police and EMS on urban/noir roleplay sims but is also partial to familial roleplays and may from time to time stretch his interests elsewhere as well.
NOTICE: Permission is granted for ONLY noncommerical use and distribution by roleplayers and by roleplay community leaders via any means, including inclusion in welcome packages and sim-related websites of this guide provided that credit is given to the author and the guide is provided as it appears including with this notice. Any questions or requests please contact the author.
You must be logged in to reply to this topic.