Associations and media organizations share their thoughts on what it means to be EMS Strong.
The theme for this year’s EMS Strong campaign is “Always in Service.” It represents EMS by recognizing their constant service to communities through first response, treatment and transport, prevention and intervention through Community Paramedicine and Mobile Integrated Healthcare.
It is a most exciting time for EMS across our great nation and the world. As EMS continues to evolve, there are many exciting opportunities for growth and development in this ever-expanding sphere of medicine.
EMS is the medical entry point for many patients and that experience often directly affects a patient’s journey through their continuum of care, from onset of illness to recovery. EMS professionals continually strive to ensure that journey is a positive one.
They are engaged in new approaches, research, innovations, quality of patient care, workplace diversity and the safety of practitioners, the public and our patients.
We are EMS Strong and we are becoming EMS Stronger, which is why ACEP is proud to recognize EMS professionals’ commitment to the work that they do and the compassion they demonstrate while serving others every, single day.
Dr. Rebecca Parker, MD, FACEP President, American College of Emergency Physicians
EMS Strong: For Our Patients, Our Communities and Each Other. EMS Strong exemplifies the dedication of our profession to develop and hone our knowledge and skills to provide the best possible care to our patients. EMS Strong reflects the bravery and selfless dedication of those in our profession who risk danger when entering unstable environments to save lives in our communities. EMS Strong is a philosophy that guides our profession through the daily challenges and, often, severe conditions we face. It reinforces the need for our physical and mental wellbeing, and gives us the strength to support the wellbeing of our colleagues.
EMS Strong is a bond that unites all of us in the EMS profession on land, in the air and out at sea. It is a bridge of passion, experience and innovation between practitioners, agencies and states that is advancing the science and transforming the practice of EMS.
Those who wear the Star proudly conserve life, promote health, and personify the meaning of EMS Strong. NAEMT is honored to support you!
Dennis Rowe, NREMT-P President, National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians
The American Ambulance Association is committed to representing EMS across the United States. We work tirelessly to ensure that ambulance services receive sustainable levels of reimbursement, empowering them to continue to deliver the highest quality patient care. EMS Strong offers AAA the opportunity to collaborate with other EMS-focused organizations to bring attention to our shared goals. Together, we are even stronger.
Mark Postma, President, American Ambulance Association
The quality of the education EMS providers receive is paramount to the safety of the patients they serve. Accreditation serves to validate those educational programs against a single national standard to determine its effectiveness. In doing so, the students are taught and the public they serve are protected.
EMS STRONG means that, as a profession, we value the education of our personnel and believe it benefits our communities by providing a single, national pathway to EMS certification through improvements of our schools by a national EMS accreditation process.
George W. Hatch, Jr., EdD, LP, EMT-P Executive Director, Committee on Accreditation of Educational Programs for the EMS Professions
The IAFC thanks and honors the hundreds of thousands of crosstrained firefighter-EMTs and firefighter-paramedics who provide an invaluable service to communities across the nation by administering high-quality prehospital medical care to patients with a wide variety of medical needs. EMS Week is a great opportunity for our agencies and communities to reflect on the critical services and care firefighter/paramedics and EMTs bring to patients, no matter where they are.
John Sinclair Fire Chief & President and Chairman of the Board of the IAFC
We live in a data-rich time when electronic apps can monitor and deploy emergency response resources, so responders must learn to interact and function in this new age. An age in which EMS professionals must operate in an all-hazards environment where, in the span of a 24-hour period, they are just as likely to respond to an active shooter event or an opioid overdose, as they are to a cardiac event or a motor vehicle crash. Therefore, throughout North America, the provision of EMS has progressed from an amenity to a citizen-required essential public service. In fact few communities, if any, lack vital emergency medical services at some level—and in most communities, the first response is provided by the fire department. Firefighters are EMS Strong!
Harold A. Schaitberger General President, International Association of Fire Fighters
EMS professionals are being tasked with more responsibilities each year. From entering the warm zone for triaging victims to providing exceptional daily care to those who need it. The International Public Safety Association supports the EMS Strong Campaign because we believe in the important work our EMS providers do for public safety and the communities they serve. We notice the tremendous training and education that EMS professionals are taking to improve their practices and daily care. We value their willingness to aid those in need. We recognize their critical role in public safety.
Heather R. Cotter Executive Director, International Public Safety Association
EMS and fire educators are the modern-day Spartan warriors. Educating and training the minds and hearts of students to react in a predictable and controlled manner; putting service above survival. Only a Spartan can tell you why they do it, what drives them forward – shoulder to shoulder with fellow brothers and sisters. May our hearts be filled with justice, mercy, and compassion. May our sword cut through the gossip, pettiness, and arrogance that is a part of our society. May our shield be a sanctuary for those in need and a place of protection for the defenseless. If there is no other choice, may we give our lives freely for our fellow man – facing death not with fear but with the courage that is born of a Spartan – Living EMS STRONG.
Dr. Chris Nollette, NRP, LP President, National Association of EMS Educators
In 2017, NAEMSP believes EMS Strong means resilience. Resilience in the face of “routine” events as we bring care and calm to patients and their loved ones during emergencies. Resilience in the face of a changing healthcare landscape while our practice changes with concepts such as community paramedicine, mobile integrated healthcare, and other innovations. Resilience as we face the all-too-common situation of active threat scenarios with multiple casualty situations. Resilience that is manifest as we take care of our own, being watchful for signs of PTSD, substance abuse, and the general health of our colleagues.
J. Brent Myers, MD, MPH, FACEP, FAEMS President, National Association of EMS Physicians
The 2016 EMS Strong theme was “EMS Strong; Called to Care”. The 2017 theme is “EMS Strong: Always in Service.” These themes represent particular aspects of professionalism that NEMSMA and our members continuously advocate. As an association that represents leaders from all forms and models of EMS, NEMSMA advocates for unity of purpose, collaboration, collegiality, and professionalism. EMS Strong communicates just such a message, one that is important to providers and associations alike. Professionals are caring individuals called to serve. When we’re challenged, stressed, or struggling, we all need to remember and embrace that calling. We are EMS Strong.
Michael Touchstone, BS, Paramedic Immediate Past President, National EMS Management Association
Since the 1970s, state EMS offices have been the leading architects and engineers of EMS systems. In the early days, these leaders began building state systems through organizing new resources made possible by federal grants and adopting emerging standards related to education and equipment. Today’s challenges involve evolving technology related to communications and progressive patient care, as well as implementing current cutting-edge use of new concepts and practices such as evidence-based guidelines, community paramedicine, and EMS 3.0. Throughout it all, one thing has remained constant: EMS personnel are the centerpiece of strength of all EMS systems, and embracing EMS Strong is a vital way of staying focused on that.
Keith Wages NASEMSO President and Director of the Georgia Office of EMS and Trauma
From a young age, children are taught that, in a moment of crisis, they call 911. From illness to injury, whenever the world seems to be ending, society counts on EMS personnel to be there. They are expected to work hard, and their energy and compassion are expected to be inexhaustible. They can’t just be strong; they must be EMS Strong.
The National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians exists to certify that strength. EMS Strong is our commitment to a competent, reliable and accountable community. It’s a psychometrically sound demonstration of entry-level competence on day one, and it’s verification of continued competence on day 1,000. For the NREMT, EMS Strong is our everyday belief in the value of a properly certified EMS professional.
By providing National EMS Certification, the NREMT exists to offer the nation assurance that the men and women providing emergency treatment in the out-of-hospital setting are capable of providing the care patients and their loved ones deserve.
Dr. Severo Rodriguez, Executive Director and CEO, National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians
In order for our nation to be EMS Strong, it is critical that paid and volunteer service providers in every community, regardless of size or location, have the resources necessary to deliver quality and timely patient care. To ensure that providers have access to the training, equipment, supplies and vehicles that they need to do their jobs effectively, EMS must be recognized as an essential public service.
Chief Juan Bonilla Chairman, EMS/Rescue Section National Volunteer Fire Council
EMS Strong is an opportunity for EMS1 and Paramedic Chief to pay tribute to the outstanding service and care emergency medical responders, EMTs, and paramedics provide to their communities. EMS Strong reminds us that EMS exists in every village, town and city. Although every community has its unique circumstances or challenges, they are all united by a group of caregivers who are always available to their neighbors and visitors.
Greg Friese, MS, NRP Editor-in-Chief, EMS1.com
The emergency medical services require many dimensions of strength. Providers must be strong enough to deliver difficult care in challenging circumstances, solid in their knowledge and skills. Leaders require the strength to make hard choices in developing and maintaining the mechanisms of care delivery. Call-takers and dispatchers need the fortitude under pressure to assess emergencies and initiate lifesaving help. All of us must remain resolute enough to persevere against the obstacles and odds that impede us. It is the mission and privilege of EMS World to help prepare all in EMS—to help build their strength—to meet these challenges and deliver the top-quality care our communities and citizens deserve.
JEMS (Journal of Emergency Medical Services) and the EMS Today Conference and Exposition have helped to strengthen EMS for more than 35 years by providing EMTs and paramedics with the information and education they need to provide high-quality patient care and remain EMS Strong. This EMS Week, we salute the hardworking EMTs and paramedics, as well as the instructors, administrators and countless others who support their work on the streets.