Escambia's EMS honored as the best in the state

How many people, businesses or governmental agencies can say they are the best in the state at what they do? Those who work for the Escambia County Emergency Medical Services can now boast that their department has been chosen the state's EMS Provider of the Year.

County residents in need of a quick and professional response to an emergency can rest easier knowing that they live in the best-served region in Florida.

As the population of Escambia County continues to grow, emergency services will be needed by more and more residents to provide adequate, quick responses. While the hope is that you will never need to use them, it is comforting to know that Escambia's EMS is a model of excellence, efficiency and quality.

The award commended EMS employees for their dedicated and professional service to their community over the past few years. Last year alone, they answered more than 33,000 emergency calls in the county, handling about 2,800 calls each month.

Escambia County EMS was among 67 emergency services that were eligible statewide to be considered for the award, which will be presented next month during the state EMS Advisory Council meeting in Orlando.

EMS workers provide a much- needed service that too often is take for granted until someone needs them in times of a crisis.

At a time when public services often are criticized for inefficiency and ineffectiveness, Escambia's EMS earns praise and appreciation for its excellent performance.

The unfortunate reality is that we only need EMS during times of trouble and despair. But today we applaud the department's 150 emergency medical technicians and paramedics for going the extra mile to save lives and make our community a better and safer place.