You can’t keep someone like Guy Minshall grounded. Especially since he is a Flight Paramedic with PHI Air Medical based out of La Grange. Guy is one who loves the thrills of being sky-high in a helicopter, in any kind of weather, performing life-saving procedures for his patients.
Whether it’s a Rapid Sequence Induction (putting a patient to sleep and placing a breathing tube in for them mid-air) or racing to an accident scene with sirens and horns blaring, Guy is ready to go.
You could also find him jumping out of a perfectly good airplane for a different kind of thrill, as he is a licensed skydiver, or racing down the streets on one of two of his motorcycles. Or you could find him in a kitchen plating up a gastronomic delight fit for royalty.
There are many sides to Guy.
Before he started his EMS education, Guy was a trained Chef. He spent five years in the UK attending Culinary School and receiving his Royal London Institute certification.
One of six Master Bartenders, in 1999 he became the World Bartender Champion and went on to work for Hard Rock Cafe in Orlando, FL as their Worldwide Beverage Manager.
This career move helped Guy move from his native home of Wales to the USA.
However, Guy’s last call as a bartender opened up a first call out to Emergency Medicine in healthcare, where he has excelled in his field and fulfilled a lifelong dream of becoming a Flight Paramedic.
As for choosing emergency medical services, Guy said, “I feel everyone has a reason why they choose the medical field - a calling, so to speak. Arriving at home one day, I found my mother in a critical way and I felt helpless. I called 999 (British 9-1-1) and I saw how calm and professional they were. I was 14 at the time and it stuck with me until I turned 40. It was then I decided to pursue what had been pulling at me for 26 years.”
While Guy does acknowledge the thrill that comes with his work, he humbly recognizes the badge of honor that comes with being a Flight Paramedic.
He was pinned with his wings about five years ago by the mother of a Paramedic friend who was killed in the line of duty.
They always talked about being on a helicopter together, so he kept his promise and fulfilled one of the most memorable and emotional moments in his career.
Guy said he feels his career as a Flight Paramedic is his highest achievement. Flight Paramedics have full autonomy in the aircraft and are able to perform as a high functioning clinician. Along the way, Guy has amassed many certifications, with just as many initials, after them.
His experience and education have benefited Colorado County EMS greatly. He started serving Colorado County EMS five years ago and is now the Assistant Director and Clinical Manager. He is responsible for all training and the Clinical Care guidelines to be followed by EMS personnel in order to provide the best care out in the field.
Guy said it took 18 months to write these guidelines and he trains medics on airway management, critical care medications, and treatments.
Guy notes that the Colorado County EMS carries equipment and medications on the ambulances that even some of the bigger EMS services don’t carry.
“I don’t think the citizens of the county truly realize what their EMS service can provide now,” Guy observed. “We have to be on top of our game as we are miles away from appropriate Stroke/Treatment facilities.”
As for where he sees Colorado County EMS going? “We are always learning and growing in our scope of practice. This is an ever-fluid job as medicine, science, and practices change all the time so it’s my job to make sure that your EMS stays ahead.”
Whether he is inserting a laryngoscope down a patient’s throat or making a mouth-watering frittata to tickle your tastebuds, you can always count on Guy Minchall to do his best.