This White Paper describes a summit meeting in July 2016 of nearly 50 participants from national EMS organizations discussed data use in EMS and ways to improve it. It summarizes findings of the committee as well as discussions at the summit, and is intended to provide feedback to the EMS community on the issues, to provide guidance to EMS leaders, and to provide valuable information for the revision of relevant sections of the 1996 EMS Agenda for the Future.
The collection and use of data in EMS systems nationwide is key to the improvement of operations, provider safety and patient care.
The Office of EMS has a long history of supporting the collection and use of standardized EMS data. Together with its Federal partners, NHTSA continues to innovate, fund and support a variety of efforts to help states and agencies make decisions from the most current available data.
National EMS Information System (NEMSIS)
Recognizing the critical need for EMS data collection at the national level, NHTSA’s Office of EMS, in cooperation with Federal, State and academic partners, supported the creation of the National EMS Information System (NEMSIS).
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NEMSIS provides the framework for collecting, storing, and sharing standardized EMS data from States nationwide. The NEMSIS uniform dataset and database help local, State and national EMS stakeholders more accurately assess EMS needs and performance, as well as support better strategic planning for the EMS systems of tomorrow. Data from NEMSIS is also used to help benchmark performance, determine effectiveness of clinical interventions, and facilitate cost-benefit analyses. Learn More
The vision of the EMS Compass initiative is to improve individual patient care and the overall health of our communities with data-driven, evidence-based EMS systems of care.
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Funded through a cooperative agreement with the National Association of State EMS Officials (NASEMSO) the EMS Compass initiative, which will be active from October 2014 until October 2016, has engaged a wide range of EMS stakeholders to develop performance measures that are relevant to EMS agencies, regulators, and patients.
The measures are based on the latest version of the National EMS Information System (NEMSIS). In addition to the development of measures, the initiative will also create a process for the continual design, testing and evaluation of performance measures—and guidance for how local systems can use those measures to improve—so EMS can continue to provide the highest quality care to patients and communities in the future. Learn More
Motor Vehicle Crash Insights from EMS Data
Emergency Medical Services is an essential component of a comprehensive traffic safety system. NHTSA’s Office of EMS supports efforts to improve systems of emergency care for response to traffic crashes and all medical emergencies.
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Clear and effective reporting of traffic crashes by event conditions, cause, associated risk factors and high risk populations is critical to understanding the interventions, public policies and regulatory decisions that are most effective in preventing them. Emergency care data specific to a traffic crash victim is invaluable to traffic safety professionals and while many traffic crash databases exist, few provide data from the perspective of health care providers.
The National EMS Database, which houses the data collected under the NEMSIS standard, provides detailed information on the crash victim’s condition, the care provided in the prehospital setting, the EMS transport decision, and the transport disposition immediately following the crash from the more than 250 million de-indentified records from EMS activations in more than 48 states.