The nation's EMS systems face significant challenges. Addressing them requires collaboration among a diverse range of National, State, and local experts, united by a common vision and informed by research from the field. Meet the Federal agencies developing the policies, processes, and technologies that will guide the next generation EMS system; one that provides efficient, effective, and equitable service in every emergency.
The Department of Defense provides criteria, guidance, and instructions to inform the delivery of EMS in appropriate DoD programs. Worldwide, DoD active duty and civilian EMS personnel respond to emergency incidents both on military installations and (through mutual aide agreements) in the local community. Unique to the DoD, EMS personnel trained both to community standards and specialized levels of care, deliver EMS in forward deployed and hostile areas including combat and combat support.
The Department of Health and Human Services is the United States government's principal agency for protecting the health of all Americans and providing essential human services. Specifically related to EMS, DHHS provides technical assistance, subject matter expertise, and direct program services to help States, tribes, territories, local communities, and other countries prepare for, respond to, and rapidly recover from disasters and emergencies.
The Department of Homeland Security provides the coordinated, comprehensive Federal response in the event of a terrorist attack, natural disaster, or other large-scale emergency while working with Federal, State, local, and private sector partners to ensure a swift and effective recovery effort.
The Federal Communications Commission, through its Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau (PSHSB), works to ensure that first responders, including EMS personnel, have access to reliable, interoperable equipment during emergencies. The PSHSB provides information on federal resources available to EMS personnel, assists in the development of emergency communications plans, and enrolls first responder organizations in priority services, including the telecommunications service priority (TSP), wireless priority service (WPS), and government entity telecommunications service (GETS).
The Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), through its Office of EMS reduces death and disability by providing leadership and coordination to the EMS community in assessing, planning, developing, and promoting comprehensive, evidence-based emergency medical services and 911 systems. Specifically, NHTSA partners with peer agencies to advance a National vision for EMS, and collects and analyzes the data EMS managers need to make critical decisions.
The Office of EMS provides support to the Federal Interagency Committee on EMS (FICEMS), which is a collaborative body focused on defining the direction of Federal research and initiatives to support the EMS community. The agencies listed above comprise the membership of FICEMS. This membership receives input from the appointed community representatives who comprise the National EMS Advisory Council (NEMSAC).