National Emergency Medical Services Week (EMS Week) is May 19th – 25th; celebrating its 45th year. EMS Week, presented by the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) in conjunction with the National Association of EMTs (NAEMT), is an event that brings together local communities and medical personnel to publicize safety, honor, and the dedication of those who provide the day-to-day lifesaving services of medicine's "front line".
This year's theme is "EMS Strong: Beyond the Call" honoring EMS providers unifying the profession and bringing awareness to National EMS Week. Daily themes, for the week, were designated as an integral part in the success of the annual campaign to continually involve the community:
- Monday, May 20: "Education Day" to highlight both public education programs and EMS provider education;
- Tuesday, May 21: "Safety Tuesday" to promote safety for the EMS provider, the patient and the public;
- Wednesday, May 22: "EMS for Children Day" to highlight the special needs of the pediatric patient;
- Thursday, May 23: "Save-A-Life Day" to promote CPR and Stop the Bleed, which is citizen bleeding control education, "Until Help Arrives" – active bystander training, public CPR programs and other related education programs;
- Friday, May 24: "EMS Recognition Day" to recognize your local EMS heroes and those saved by the EMS system.
EMS Week recognizes honorable men and women in EMS who are dedicated to delivering superb medical care to our communities nationwide. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NTHSA), EMS treats and transports approximately 25-30 million patients each year. Virginians, like residents across the country, rely on EMS personnel to respond to the call for help and to provide quality prehospital care, states Virginia Department of Health (VDH). In 2017, more than 1.46 million EMS calls, approximately 4,000 responses per day were documented in Virginia's electronic patient care data collection system. During EMS Week, 35,616 EMS providers and 585 agencies in Virginia will be recognized for their dedication and commitment to the citizens of the Commonwealth of Virginia, the EMS system and the life-saving efforts they provide on a daily basis.
In 2018, Prince William County, a combined system of career and volunteer personnel, responded to 30,726 incidents requiring Advanced and Basic Life Support. "Every call brings a new opportunity to make a difference in someone's life by building and/or creating new relationships while administering care provided through years of education and training," states Acting System Chief Tim Keen of the Prince William County Fire and Rescue System. "Our EMS providers provide emerging urgent and preventative care to the community as a vital and cohesive component of our community's healthcare system."
During EMS Week and throughout the year, take an opportunity to recognize the dedicated men and women who make up the Prince William EMS community and the communities nationwide and say thanks to all those who have dedicated so much to this profession and our communities.
For more information visit National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians www.naemt.org, Virginia Department of Health www.vdh.virginia.gov,
American College of Emergency Physicians www.acep.org/, and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration www.nhtsa.gov.