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January 3, 2012
Landmark document offers snapshot of EMS in US
WASHINGTON — A landmark document offers a unique snapshot on the condition of EMS in the United States.
The National EMS Assessment, which was completed over a 24-month period from September 2009, is the first national assessment of Emergency Medical Services that provides comprehensive data aggregated at both the state and national levels.
Authors hope the data will allow the officials responsible for improving EMS systems to benchmark current and future performance and identify areas of strength and weakness.
The report shows there are 19,971 credentialed EMS Agencies in the United States, and an estimated total of 826,111 credentialed EMS professionals at the EMT-Basic, Intermediate, and Paramedic levels.
Of these, 67 percent of the EMS workforce is male, and 70 percent of the EMS workforce is between 20 and 49 years old.
The assessment identifies a number of areas for improvement, particularly in the area of EMS health and safety.
Among the findings are:
Further expert panel findings include:
The purpose of the National EMS Assessment was to identify and analyze existing databases containing information on EMS, EMS emergency preparedness, and 911 systems at the state and national levels.
Authors say because the report is both detailed and comprehensive, it allows states, territories and regions the ability to identify areas where systems may not be as comprehensive as desired. It can also help provide system leaders the information needed to leverage more resources.
Among the other findings are:
The document was sponsored by the Federal Interagency Committee for Emergency Medical Services (FICEMS) and funded by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).