Maciej started his healthcare career as a paramedic in Poland before moving to the UK. He got a job as a healthcare assistant in the NHS to improve his English before applying for a paramedic job role. He talks about his journey to becoming a paramedic in England and what life is like working in Cumbria.
Why did you choose to be a paramedic?
I am such an active person – I love action, sports, and new experiences. Before becoming a paramedic, I spent a lot of time thinking about my career and what I wanted to do. I tried to find something which incorporates all my interests as I couldn’t imagine myself in an office for eight hours a day. The paramedic role was perfect for me
I moved to the UK and got a job as a healthcare assistant where I learned English and became fluent to a good level. One day I saw an advert for a paramedic course at my local university, and after researching it, I decided that was it; I was applying. It took me three years of studying and further apprenticeships to convince myself that I had chosen the right career, and I did!
I moved to Cumbria from Bristol. I’ve spent all my life in the cities, and I knew at some point in my life I wanted to try something different. As I’m a very ‘outdoorsy’ person, I fell in love with the Lake District instantly. My pragmatic side appreciated the reasonable cost of living, fresh air and above all no traffic compared to what I was used to in a city. I applied for a paramedic role in NWAS, succeed and made Cumbria my new home.
What is the job like?
I find this job is pretty much the same in every country – end of the day our principle is to save lives and look after our patients. The system and working conditions, however are quite different in Poland as there are fewer procedures and policies and more freedoms. I got used to working here, adopted the safe systems and I’m now part of it.
What are the best parts of your job?
Being able to make a difference – a real difference. Nothing makes me prouder than when I see my former patients alive after serious medical or trauma episodes and I know that my help made it all possible.
In this job you never get bored. Every incident, every patient is like a completely new world, a blank card waiting to be written with a new tale. I have come across hundreds of different stories; funny, sad and exciting. You also feel a part of something, a family you can rely on in hard times or lough together in happy ones.
Thanks Maciej and Happy International Paramedics Day.