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New Process for Rapidly Updating National EMS Scope of Practice Model

Thu, 10/18/2018 - 17:44

As part of an ongoing revision of the National EMS Scope of Practice Model, a group ofexperts convened by the National Association of State EMS Officials, with support from the NHTSA Office of EMS, recently developed and approved a process for quickly updating the Model. The description of the process is available on  

The National EMS Scope of Practice Model was initially published in 2007 and provides guidance to states developing EMS scope of practice laws and regulations. The recent effort to revise the Model included the development of two emergent updates, released in 2017, to address the growing efforts to put naloxone and tourniquets in the hands of more first responders. The fully revised Model is expected to be completed later this year.

The creation of a rapid process for updating the National EMS Scope of Practice Model will improve the EMS profession's ability to adapt and innovate safely as the rate oftechnological and scientific developments continues to increase.

For more information on the National EMS Scope of Practice Model, visit

Categories: EMS

Mesa Fire to Outfit All Fire/EMS Crews With Bulletproof Vests

Thu, 10/18/2018 - 16:13

MESA, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) - Body armor is not just for police anymore. Mesa Fire is now putting the bulletproof gear on all of its firefighters.

Mesa City Council approved $262,000 to buy ballistic vests and helmets for all frontline firefighters earlier this month.

In the event of an active shooter, police go into the "hot zone" first.

Fire crews and paramedics typically have to wait a ways away from the scene in the "warm zones" until it's safe before they can go in and rescue victims. In scenes like these, seconds can mean the difference between life and death for victims. Fire departments around the country are training and outfitting their fire/EMS crews to go into "hot zones" with police to not waste precious time helping victims.

Mesa fire says there's also a daily use for bulletproof gear. Even an average call can turn dangerous quickly.

Read more at 3TV/CBS 5.

Categories: EMS

Athlete Thanks Paramedics Who Save Her Life

Thu, 10/18/2018 - 10:37


GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. - Months after suffering a traumatic brain injury a college softball star thanked the paramedics who rushed to her aid.

Kali Shultz was home for the summer and hanging out with her boyfriend at a Gwinnett County park when she fell off a longboard.

Read more at Fox 5 Atlanta.

Categories: EMS

Safety Lighting Device Aims to Save Lives of First Responders by Increasing Visibility

Thu, 10/18/2018 - 02:00
MILWAUKEE — The latest technology in personal safety lighting was unveiled during the 2018 EMS World Expo in Nashville. Guardian Angel, a manufacturer of premium wearable safety lights, is focused on protecting first responders from preventable struck-by injuries and deaths. The innovative company seeks to advance its mission through the debut of its Elite Series personal safety lighting devices.   Year after year, roadside struck-by collisions remain one of the most serious threats to first responders. Since 2008, 74 U.S. law enforcement officers were struck and killed by a vehicle while outside of their cruisers.1​ During that same period, 32 U.S. firefighters and emergency medical personnel were also struck and killed in roadside incidents.2​ ​​Sadly, these numbers don’t even reflect the hundreds more first responders who are involved in roadside (struck-by) accidents who survive, but are severely injured or incapacitated.   “We seek to keep EMS, firefighters, and police officers safe,” said Guardian Angel CEO Chadwick Keller, “To combat these devastating struck-by trends, we redesigned previous devices to create the Elite Series model. It’s engineered based on the feedback we received from the 20,000 first responders who use our devices in the field everyday. We’re thrilled with the positive reviews and the noted increased feeling of safety our devices provide.”   Keller continued,“We believe many of these tragic incidents are avoidable. First responders risk their lives every day for our safety and we at Guardian Angel are laser-focused on providing products that keep our first responders safe. This is the mission that drives our company each and every day.”   Every feature of the Elite Series was designed and developed with performance, safety, comfort and utility in mind. Some of the distinguishing features are:
Categories: EMS

California's Prop 11: EMS Personnel Break Time Debate

Wed, 10/17/2018 - 16:21


LOS ANGELES (CBS): When you need help and call 9-1-1 you expect paramedics will race to you right away with lights and sirens on, right?

Well, there’s a major battle raging in the California courts, capital, and the November ballot box that could dramatically change things.

One company has spent more than $20 million to support a state ballot measure that ensure EMTs and paramedics keep radios and pagers on during breaks so they can respond anytime.

Categories: EMS

Mysterious Paralyzing Illness Found Among Kids in 22 States

Wed, 10/17/2018 - 10:39


NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. health officials on Tuesday reported a jump in cases of a rare paralyzing illness in children, and said it seems to be following an every-other-year pattern.

At least 62 cases have been confirmed in 22 states this year, and at least 65 additional illnesses in those states are being investigated, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Similar waves of the same illness occurred in 2014 and 2016.

CDC officials say they haven't found the cause. Some possible suspects, such as polio and West Nile virus, have been ruled out. Another kind of virus is suspected, but it's been found in only some of the cases.

"This is a mystery so far," the CDC's Dr. Nancy Messonnier said in a call Tuesday with reporters.

About 90 percent of the cases are children who have suffered muscle weakness or paralysis, including in the face, neck, back or limbs. The symptoms tend to occur about a week after they had a fever and respiratory illness.

It is "a pretty dramatic disease," but fortunately most kids recover, Messonnier said.

Health officials call the condition acute flaccid myelitis. The CDC would not release a list of the states reporting probable or confirmed cases. But some states have previously announced clusters, including Minnesota, Illinois, Colorado, New York and Washington.

The cases in 2014 and 2016 were partly attributed to particular strains of respiratory germs called enteroviruses, which spread the most in the summer and fall.


Categories: EMS

N.J. EMS Council Receives $7,000 AT&T Contribution to Support Cadet Scholarships

Tue, 10/16/2018 - 17:26

SAYREVILLE, NJ – AT&T has contributed $7,000 to support the EMS Council of New Jersey’s (EMSCNJ) cadet scholarship program.

The 89-year-old nonprofit New Jersey State First Aid Council, now doing business as the EMSCNJ, represents 20,000 EMS volunteers affiliated with 250+ EMS agencies throughout the Garden State.

Today Althea Yancy, Regional Director, AT&T, presented EMSCNJ President Joseph G. Walsh, Jr. with a check, which will be used to expand the organization’s cadet scholarship program.

“We distribute scholarships twice a year, as our budget allows,” Walsh said. “We always receive many more applications than we can fund, so unfortunately, we can’t accommodate every deserving cadet.”

So far this year, the EMSCNJ has awarded eight $1,000 cadet scholarships to high school seniors who were active volunteers on their Council-affiliated squads and planned to attend college this Fall. Fifty-one cadets applied. A selection committee at Raritan Valley Community College reviewed the applications and selected the recipients.

The EMSCNJ also awarded six $1,000 Gail Lawrence Memorial Scholarships to graduate students pursuing medical-related careers and who also are active squad participants.

“AT&T’s generosity will enable us to assist more of our worthy cadets who otherwise might be turned down for scholarships, simply because we don’t have the funds,” Walsh said. “This is an investment not only in the future of volunteer EMS, but also our communities.”

The EMSCNJ also supports the annual cadet competition in Keyport, which drew approximately 150 New Jersey and New York cadets in June, and arranges for cadets to attend a free, full day of the October conference each year.

Yancy said the contribution is part of AT&T Aspire, the company’s signature philanthropic initiative that helps provide access to the education and training people need to get and keep good jobs.

Categories: EMS

7 Killed, Almost 80 Injured in Morocco Train Derailment

Tue, 10/16/2018 - 15:37

RABAT, Morocco (AP) — At least seven people died and nearly 80 were injured after a shuttle train linking the Moroccan capital to a town farther north on the Atlantic coast derailed Tuesday, authorities at the accident site said.

The train derailed about halfway between Rabat and the town of Kenitra, near the city of Sale. Tangled in the wreckage were doors and seats that had been gouged out of place, while passengers' belongings and glass from broken windows littered the accident site.

Emergency workers rushed people to hospitals in Rabat, Sale and Kenitra while rescue teams searched for more victims with the help of cadaver dogs. Military personnel guarded the site as railway workers and authorities started to investigate why the train jumped its tracks.

Local residents were the first to reach the scene in the town of Sidi Bouknadel, helping injured or trapped survivors out of mangled train cars and covering the bodies of the dead. They reported the accident happened at around 9:30 a.m.

"We heard a gigantic explosion. The earth shook and the sound was unbearable," Mourad El Kbiri, who owns a cafe near where the train detailed, told The Associated Press. "I rushed to see what happened. It was horrific. Disfigured bodies all over the place, blood and body pieces."

The Center for Blood Immunization declared a state of emergency and dispatched blood collection vehicles to Rabat, Kenitra, Sale and Sidi Bouknadel to receive donors.

The general director of state-owned railway company ONCF, Mohamed Rabie Khlie, and Morocco's interior and transport ministers visited the accident site briefly, but refused to comment.

The Moroccan king, Mohammed VI, offered to pay the costs of victims' funerals out of his own pocket, state news agency MAP reported.

Categories: EMS

Future Service Dogs Schooled on Emergency Response

Tue, 10/16/2018 - 15:01


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD-TV) — The sights and sounds of emergency vehicles can be scary for anyone. If you have four legs and especially sensitive hearing and smell, it can be even more upsetting.

"It can definitely complicate things," Life EMS Ambulance paramedic Tedd VanSolkema said of situations when patients have service dogs.

So on Wednesday, Paws With A Cause trainees spent part of the day at Life's Grand Rapids garage facing their fears.

Categories: EMS

Florida Hurricane Death Toll Proves Elusive

Tue, 10/16/2018 - 06:23

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — In Florida, a grim task is unwinding slowly: Finding out how many people were killed in Hurricane Michael.

The storm that ravaged Florida's Panhandle left incredible destruction stretching from the Gulf of Mexico to the state border, but getting a firm grasp on how many died is proving somewhat elusive.

The state has officially acknowledged just two deaths so far — and one death was in northeast Florida, far from the ground-zero fury of the Category 4 storm.

Meanwhile, search and rescue teams have crawled and walked through thousands of buildings and ruins for days in places like Mexico Beach, which was virtually wiped out when Michael roared ashore last week. The Associated Press has put the overall death toll at 17 so far, including one death in Mexico Beach confirmed by a search and rescue team and six others confirmed by local officials in Florida. In other states, there are 10 confirmed deaths.

"Unfortunately there are going to more fatalities than people want to admit," said State Rep. Halsey Beshears, a Republican whose district includes several of the counties hammered by Michael. "If you stayed in Mexico Beach, there's no way you could have survived. I think more fatalities are going to show up every day."

Joanne Garone Behnke called it "torture" awaiting news about whether her 79-year-old aunt who stayed in Mexico Beach had survived.

Right after the storm hit, Brock Long, the chief of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, said he expected the death toll to rise after hearing reports that some people refused to evacuate before Michael's landfall.

But both Long and Gov. Rick Scott, however, sidestepped questions late Sunday after they returned from an all-day trip to some of the hard-hit communities.

"I'm very hopeful that everybody is going to be found alive and that everybody is going to survive this," Scott said.

Right after the storm, state officials said thousands of calls inquiring about missing people came in to authorities and non-profit groups. FEMA did announce Monday that search and rescue teams along with the Coast Guard and National Guard had rescued or assisted more than 4,000 people in storm-impacted areas and that they had checked on thousands of homes and buildings.

Categories: EMS

Families Search for the Missing in Hurricane Michael's Aftermath

Mon, 10/15/2018 - 18:58

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (AP) — Joanne Garone Behnke has replayed every possible scenario in her mind a hundred times.

Maybe her 79-year-old aunt sought shelter at the sturdy condo nearby that withstood Hurricane Michael's devastating winds. Maybe she was rescued and is lying in a hospital bed somewhere. The pile of rubble that was once her Mexico Beach home is shallow, too shallow for a body to go unnoticed, Garone Behnke tells herself.

"It's torture," says Garone Behnke, who last talked to her Aunt Aggie Vicari right before the storm hit, begging her to leave her cinderblock home.

Five days after the hurricane slammed into the Florida Panhandle, people are struggling to locate friends and loved ones who haven't been heard from, though how many residents are missing seems to be anyone's guess.

"I've been on the phone to reporters, to fire chiefs, to heads of task force from Miami, to you name it, I've called them. I've called every hospital," Garone Behnke said Monday, then stopped to look at a text from the fire chief in Mexico Beach.

To her disappointment, it read: "We're still working on it ... we'll keep you posted."

As President Donald Trump visited the devastated zone, the death toll from Michael's march from Florida to Virginia stood at 17, and the search for victims continued.

As the hurricane closed in and more than 375,000 people were warned to evacuate, emergency authorities expressed frustration that many residents weren't leaving.

Since the storm, many people have been rescued from the devastated zones. Emergency officials said that because of widespread cellphone outages, others could be safe and just haven't been able to tell friends or family.

Rescue worker Trevor Lewis and the rest of his six-member squad lent their cellphones to storm victims so that they could contact loved ones for the first time in days. He said he watched them "cry out in joy."

Categories: EMS

California's Prop. 11: Ambulance Company has Spent Nearly $22M on Ballot Measure

Mon, 10/15/2018 - 11:03
From AMR's Facebook page courtesy Mission Local Read more at Mission Loc l Editor's Take:This article was written by Eric Murphy. From 2013 to 2014, Eric Murphy was employed by AFSCME International. United EMS Workers is a subdivision of that union. It comes to JEMS from Mission Local, a San Francisco-area local, independent neighborhood news source. 

Categories: EMS

President Trump to Visit Storm-Ravaged Florida and Georgia

Mon, 10/15/2018 - 05:31

MEXICO BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Upon touring the damage in several towns along Florida's Panhandle, Federal Emergency Management Agency chief Brock Long called the destruction left by Hurricane Michael some of the worst he's ever seen.

On Monday, President Donald Trump plans to visit Florida and Georgia and see the recovery effort for himself. Trump declared a state of emergency for Georgia late Sunday.

In hurricane-flattened Mexico Beach, crews with backhoes and other heavy equipment scooped up splintered boards, broken glass, chunks of asphalt and other debris Sunday as the mayor held out hope for the 250 or so residents who may have tried to ride out the storm.

The death toll from Michael's destructive march from Florida to Virginia stood at 17, with just one confirmed death so far in this town of about 1,000 people that took a direct hit from the hurricane and its 155 mph (250 kph) winds last week.

Mayor Al Cathey estimated 250 residents stayed behind when the hurricane struck, and he said he remained hopeful about their fate. He said search-and-rescue teams in the beach town had already combed areas with the worst damage.

"If we lose only one life, to me that's going to be a miracle," Cathey said.

He said enough food and water had been brought in for the residents who remain. Even some cellphone service had returned to the devastated community.

A framed portrait of Jesus was propped Sunday facing out of the window of Diana Hughes' home in Mexico Beach. She rode out the hurricane on the couch huddled with her dog and her ex-husband.

The storm peeled off a small section of the roof and a few inches of water got in the single-story house. But the pickup truck wouldn't start after getting swamped with water. Hughes still had her home, but no way to leave it.

"We need a generator, but we just lack transportation," Hughes said on her front porch. "We've got food and we've got water. But we've got to keep ice in the refrigerator so the food won't spoil. You can only eat so many crackers."

Categories: EMS

25 Hospitalized, 5 Serious, after Los Angeles Highway Crash

Mon, 10/15/2018 - 05:24

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Twenty-five people were taken to hospitals with mostly minor injuries following a series of crashes involving at least two cars and a bus that crashed through a concrete divider on a Los Angeles highway, authorities said.

Five patients were in serious condition following the collisions shortly after 1 p.m. that shut down all lanes on Interstate 405 in the city's San Fernando Valley area, Los Angeles Fire Department spokeswoman Margaret Stewart said. The 20 others were in fair condition with minor injuries. A total of 40 people were evaluated at the scene, she said.

The California Highway Patrol was investigating the cause of the pileup on the key north-south artery. It wasn't immediately known how many people were on the bus or where it was headed.

Television news footage showed a white charter bus marked "Transit Systems" splayed sideways but upright across southbound lanes in the North Hills neighborhood. Its skid marks indicated it had gone sideways on the northbound side and then through the divider, City News Service reported.

The bus's front end was crumpled, and emergency window exits were popped open. An SUV next to it had extensive front-end damage.

At least one crashed vehicle was in northbound lanes, which were reopened by about 2:30 p.m. The southbound side remained closed hours later, backing up traffic for miles. Some motorists stuck in their cars walked off the freeway, apparently in search of toilets or drinks, City News Service reported.

The patients in serious condition were three women, ages 49, 60 and 88, and two men, ages 30 and 69, Stewart said.

Nobody answered at a phone number listed for Los Angeles-based Transit Systems bus company.

Categories: EMS

11 Killed in Crash in Greece

Mon, 10/15/2018 - 05:19

THESSALONIKI, Greece (AP) — A speeding car carrying migrants collided with a truck in northern Greece on Saturday, killing 11 people, police said.

Ten of the victims were believed to be migrants who crossed into the Greece from Turkey. The 11th person was the car's driver and a suspected migrant smuggler, police said.

Police said the car in which the migrants were packed had another vehicle's license plates and is suspected of having been used for migrant trafficking. The car hadn't stopped at a police checkpoint during its journey, but it wasn't immediately clear how close to the site of the crash that it happened.

Police said the crash occurred just after 5 a.m. (0200 GMT) near the town of Kavala. The car, which had been heading to the main northern city of Thessaloniki, collided with a truck heading in the opposite direction and burst into flames. All of the victims have been burned beyond recognition. The truck caught fire as well.

All of the people in the car were killed. The truck driver, a 39-year-old Greek man, was treated for minor injuries in a hospital in northern Greece before being discharged.

Police told The Associated Press the car was traveling at high speed and had crossed over to the eastbound lane. The truck driver tried to swerve at the last moment, but couldn't avoid the collision.

The car wasn't traveling on the highway connecting Thessaloniki to the Turkish border but on an older road, because there are more police roadblocks on the highway.

A local firefighter told the AP on condition of anonymity because of the ongoing investigation that one of the victims was believed to have been a child and that three or four of the others were in the car's trunk.

Greek authorities have been seeing an increase in people illegally crossing the Greek-Turkish border in recent months. Many are transported to Thessaloniki, where they head to police stations to be registered and apply for asylum.

Categories: EMS

One Dead in Pennsylvania Interstate Bus Crash

Mon, 10/15/2018 - 05:13

MOSCOW, Pa. (AP) — A passenger bus has crashed on a Pennsylvania interstate, killing a woman and injuring an unknown number of passengers.

The bus crashed around 9 p.m. Sunday on Interstate 380 in Covington Township, Lackawanna County. News video and photos showed the bus leaning to its right side along the tree line. Rescue workers used ladders to reach injured passengers.

The coroner says one woman died.

Multiple ambulances and a medical helicopter were dispatched to the scene.

The crash closed both southbound lanes of the interstate.

Categories: EMS

Life-Saving CPR Spotify Playlist Created by New York-Presbyterian Hospital

Fri, 10/12/2018 - 14:09

Forget "Stayin' Alive," the New York Presbyterian Hospital has created a Spotify playlist and shared it via Twitter to help raise awareness about effective CPR and help to easily remember how to time chest compressions.

More of the story is available at NBC Connecticut.


Categories: EMS

Death Toll Rises in Michael’s Wake

Fri, 10/12/2018 - 05:59

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (AP) — Linda Marquardt rode out Hurricane Michael with her husband at their home in Mexico Beach. When their house filled with surging ocean water, they fled upstairs. Now their home is full of mud and everywhere they look there's utter devastation in their Florida Panhandle community: fishing boats tossed like toys, roofs lifted off of buildings and pine trees snapped like matchsticks in 155 mph winds.

Row after row of beachfront homes were so obliterated by Michael's surging seas and howling winds that only slabs of concrete in the sand remain, a testament that this was ground zero when the epic Category 4 hurricane slammed ashore at midweek. The destruction in this and other communities dotting the white-sand beaches is being called catastrophic — and it will need billions of dollars to rebuild.

"All of my furniture was floating," said Marquardt, 67. "'A river just started coming down the road. It was awful, and now there's just nothing left."

At least six deaths were blamed on Michael, the most powerful hurricane to hit the continental U.S. in over 50 years, and by early Friday it wasn't over yet: a tropical storm long after Wednesday's landfall, Michael stubbornly kept up its punch while barreling up the Southeast, dumping heavy rains and spreading flash flooding misery as far away as Virginia.

High winds, downed trees, streets inundated by rising waters and multiple rescues of motorists from waterlogged cars played out in spots around Virginia and neighboring North Carolina. And while forecasters said Michael was gradually losing its tropical traits, it was a new chapter would begin as an extratropical storm predicted to intensify with gale force winds once it starts cross out into the Atlantic.

In North Carolina's mountains, motorists had to be rescued Thursday from cars trapped by high water. High winds toppled trees and power lines, leaving hundreds of thousands without power. Flash flooding also was reported in the big North Carolina cities of Charlotte and Raleigh. Similar scenes played out in parts of Virginia as the storm raced seaward.

Categories: EMS

Canyon County Paramedics and Ada County Paramedics Unite to Highlight Safe Infant Sleep Practices During SIDS Awareness Month

Thu, 10/11/2018 - 16:15

BOISE, Idaho – In light of October’s SIDS Awareness Month, Ada County Paramedics and Canyon County Paramedics have united to deliver “The ABCs of Safe Sleep,” to their respective communities promoting safe infant sleep education to caretakers across both counties.

The ABCs of Safe Sleep, an acronym standing for Alone, on their Back in a Crib, is a nationwide initiative established to help protect infants from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and Sudden Unexpected Infant Death (SUID).

“When we get a 911 call from dispatch about a child not breathing. That’s the worse call we can get. That’s the call we fear,” Ada County Paramedics Battalion Chief Bart Buckendorf said. “We hope for a positive outcome with the child but too often that doesn’t happen. As a paramedic, it’s difficult. It changes you.”

Canyon County Paramedics Deputy Chief Steve Blados said his agency recently added safe sleep graphics and verbiage to the back of its ambulances— the same messages and images Ada County Paramedics affixed to its fleet.

“At Canyon County Paramedics, we’ve always said that our ambulances are moving billboards,” Blados said. So we thought it made sense to use those ‘billboards’ to spread messages related to public health, as Ada County Paramedics has.”

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) defines SIDS as a form of infant death that cannot be explained, while SUID can be attributed to suffocation, asphyxia, entrapment, and various other disease or traumas. The AAP says these risks can be reduced by placing babies to sleep on their back on a firm surface, avoiding bed sharing with parents and keeping things like blankets, pillows and stuffed animals out of cribs.

According to 911 call records and county coroners, there were over 30 infant sleep-related deaths since 2010 in Ada County and Canyon County combined.

Categories: EMS

Tulsa's Multiagency Crisis Response Team Stops Woman from Taking Her Own Life

Thu, 10/11/2018 - 09:22


TULSA, Oklahoma - A new team in Tulsa helped prevent a woman from taking her own life on Tuesday. Officers say she was standing outside the guardrail on the Peoria bridge over the BA Expressway for several hours.

A police officer, a paramedic, and a therapist make up the unique 3-person team known as the Crisis Response Team or CRT. The goal is to keep people out of the hospital and out of jail and instead get them the help they really need.

Read more at Tulsa News on 6.

Categories: EMS