Community Paramedicine – The Next Step in EMS

Picture this scenario: You work for a fire department in a small rural community of fewer than 3,000 people. Your closest medical clinic, doctor and hospital are more than 50 miles away. Even the slightest hint that something is wrong with a patient...


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It would be best for rural fire departments to look at community paramedicine by using the evaluation tool to determine the feasibility of implementing a program. The function of delivering EMS is a constant and evolving process. The addition of community paramedicine programs in many communities will be another step in the evolutionary process. It will be interesting to see how it all looks in 10 years.

GARY LUDWIG, MS, EMT-P, a Firehouse® contributing editor, is a deputy fire chief with the Memphis, TN, Fire Department. He is chair of the EMS Section for the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC), was appointed to the National EMS Advisory Council by the U.S. Secretary of Transportation and is a member of the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) EMS Standing Committee. Ludwig has a master’s degree in business and management and is a licensed paramedic. He can be reached at www.garyludwig.com.