5 Fire Organizations Form Coalition: "Advocates for Fire Service-Based EMS"

A new coalition of fire organizations has emerged that advocates the values and strengths of fire-based EMS systems. Joining to highlight the critical role that the fire service plays in EMS are the Congressional Fire Service Institute (CFSI...


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To support their mission, the Advocates for Fire Service-Based EMS have released a white paper, Prehospital 911 Emergency Medical Response: The Role of the United States Fire Service in Delivery and Coordination. Authors and contributors include Dr. Frank Pratt, medical director for the Los Angeles County Fire Department; Dr. Steven Katz, associate medical director for Palm Beach County, FL, Fire Rescue; and Dr. Paul Pepe, director for the City of Dallas Emergency Medical Services. The white paper is intended to help fire service organizations educate local, state and federal officials about the key and pivotal role the fire service plays in the delivery of EMS. As Dennis Compton said, "What this white paper represents is an awareness that EMS begins the second a 911 call is placed and highly skilled and trained emergency medical personnel from the local fire department are dispatched to the scene to provide the first level of care to victims."

The Advocates for Fire Service-Based EMS have produced a video, "Fire Service-Based EMS: The Right Response." The video complements the white paper and features highly respected fire service-based advocates who espouse the benefits of the fire service delivery of emergency medical care. It can be obtained by submitting a request to update@cfsi.org.

GARY LUDWIG, MS, EMT-P, a Firehouse® contributing editor, is a deputy fire chief with the Memphis, TN, Fire Department. He has 30 years of fire-rescue service experience. Ludwig is chairman of the EMS Section for the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC), has a master's degree in business and management, and is a licensed paramedic. He is a frequent speaker at EMS and fire conferences nationally and internationally, and can be reached through his website at www.garyludwig.com.