Connie K. Ho for RedOrbit.com
Rescuing a man who was trapped in a cave. Saving a cub scout who fell into a ravine. These are examples where emergency responders rushed to a situation to help those in need. From May 20 to May 26, professionals in Emergency Medical Services (EMS) are being honored for their commitment and service to the country with National EMS Week 2012.
In 1973, the U.S. Congress first authorized the Emergency Medical Services System (EMSS). The year following, President Gerald R. Ford signed the bill and David R. Boyd was appointed as the director of the Division of Emergency Medical Services (DEMSS), Public Health Service, Department of Health, Education, and Welfare. President Ford was the first to proclaim “Emergency Medical Services Week” after working with Boyd.
“During National Emergency Medical Services Week, we recognize the tremendous role that EMS practitioners make to improve health in communities across the nation. The around-the-clock dedication to providing emergency care is evident with one statistic: more than 36 million patients were cared for by EMS professionals in 2011 alone,” noted Dr. Nicole Lurie, Rear Admiral of the U.S. Public Health Service as well as the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, in a prepared statement.
Emergency care professionals provide emergency medical care to the community at all hours of the day.
“They strive for seamless care, from the field to the hospital emergency department or trauma center. Their commitment to ensuring that patients receive the best medical care available, anytime and anywhere, is instrumental to advancing the health, safety, and well-being of the American people,” continued Lurie in the statement. “EMS is an essential part of building a resilient health care system that functions efficiently and effectively every day and is capable of responding to disasters and public health emergencies.”
In particular, Wednesday, May 23 is recognized as Emergency Medical Services for Children (EMSC) Day with the theme of “EMS: More Than a Job. More Than a Calling.”
“For the 10th consecutive year, we are devoting one day during EMS Week to focus on the needs of children. It is National EMS for Children (EMS-C) Day“¦ consider directing your activities and events specifically on child safety and injury prevention,” remarked Dr. David Seaberg, American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) President, on the organization´s website. “Thank you again for the outstanding service you provide your communities”
According to EMS Week Ideas, there are a number of ways in which community members can celebrate National EMS Week. One way to promote the event is through awareness. For example, people can post EMS-related content to social networking websites such as Facebook and Twitter. Along with social media marketing, advertising can be placed at local fire stations. In terms of event planning, community members can collaborate with other organizations on projects. For example, people can work with hospitals and other public health agencies on a local preparedness project. They can also create health and safety outreach projects such as blood pressure screenings at malls and grocery stores.