Please cel­e­brate our EMS

Cecil Whig - - OPINION -

FROM: KEVIN SEA­MAN BAL­TI­MORE

Dur­ing the week of May 15 to 21, Mary­land joins the rest of the na­tion in cel­e­brat­ing Na­tional Emer­gency Med­i­cal Ser­vices (EMS) Week.

We com­mend the Mary­land EMS providers who re­spond ev­ery day of ev­ery month to emer­gency sit­u­a­tions, mak­ing our statewide EMS and trauma sys­tem a na­tional model for life-sav­ing care. With Gov. Larry Ho­gan’s strong com­mit­ment to pub­lic safety and the well-be­ing of all Mary­land’s cit­i­zens, he has rec­og­nized the ac­com­plish­ments of EMS providers by des­ig­nat­ing Emer­gency Med­i­cal Ser­vices Week in Mary­land.

Mary­land’s EMS sys­tem in­cludes thou­sands of trained and li­censed, vol­un­teer and ca­reer emer­gency med­i­cal dis­patch­ers, emer­gency med­i­cal re­spon­ders, emer­gency med­i­cal tech­ni­cians, car­diac res­cue tech­ni­cians, and paramedics, as well as hos­pi­tal per­son­nel. As with any or­ga­ni­za­tion, it is the peo­ple that make the sys­tem work. What is ex­tra­or­di­nary about Mary­land’s EMS sys­tem is that over half of those peo­ple are vol­un­teers. Both ca­reer and vol­un­teer per­son­nel en­gage in thou­sands of hours of spe­cial­ized train­ing and con­tin­u­ing ed­u­ca­tion to en­hance their life-sav­ing skills. We ap­plaud these men and women whose ef­forts save lives and min­i­mize the dis­abling ef­fects of in­jury in Mary­land.

In ad­di­tion to all of these highly trained EMS per­son­nel, we need all Mary­land cit­i­zens to join the ef­fort and do their part as a vi­tal link in this EMS sys­tem. By call­ing 911 when they see an emer­gency and learn­ing CPR, they be­come a part of the team. The ear­lier the re­sponse, the greater the chances are of sur­vival. We chal­lenge ev­ery­one to be­come in­volved and be the one to make a dif­fer­ence in help­ing save a life.

The cit­i­zens of Mary­land should be proud of their Emer­gency Med­i­cal Ser­vices sys­tem and its EMS providers, and please join me in congratulating them on a job well done.

Dr. Kev­inSea­man is the ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of the Mary­land In­sti­tute for Emer­gency Med­i­cal Ser­vices Sys­tems.

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