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EMS Update Newsletters

Your Connection to the Office of EMS

Spring 2024

Celebrating 50 Years of EMS Week!
This year’s theme, “Honoring Our Past. Forging Our Future,” includes a focus on changemakers like the founders of Freedom House Ambulance Service.
SS4A Grants: Resources for Your Proposal
Learn how your agency can apply for a grant to fund a wide range of projects that improve post-crash care.
The Gold Standard for EMS Data: NEMSIS v3 Turns 10
Thanks to this groundbreaking database, it’s far easier to share and compare information about prehospital care.

Fall 2023

The Real and Growing Threat of Pedestrian Injuries and Deaths
The latest data can help you understand who’s at increased risk in your community and develop appropriate countermeasures. Read more.
In Case You Missed It: Highlights from the 2023 NEMSIS Meeting
If you didn’t make it to Utah for this summer’s National EMS Information System summit, here’s a roundup of some important takeaways. Read more.
EMS Specialist Dave Bryson Recognized by NAEMSE and Fairfax, Virginia
Our OEMS colleague was honored for his work in improving EMS clinician education and long-standing community service. Read more.
988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline: A Year Later
Since its launch last year, the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline answered millions of calls, texts and chats. Expanding the reach of mobile crisis teams will require the participation of EMS professionals nationwide. Read more.
Updates from the Federal Interagency Committee on Emergency Medical Services (FICEMS) and National Emergency Medical Services Advisory Committee (NEMSAC)
The agencies share the latest news on their work in diversity, equity and inclusion as well as new and forthcoming advisories and recommendations. Read more.

Spring 2023

EMS Week 2023 Breakdown: Access Daily Resources!
EMS Week is approaching; this year it’ll be held May 21-27. It’s time to honor the dedicated clinicians tirelessly serving our communities. Discover resources that can help with your planning.
3 Ways Highway Safety & EMS Can Work Together
Transportation and highway safety professionals are looking for new and better ways to work with EMS and 911 toward our shared goal of preventing roadway deaths and injuries. Explore the best ways to collaborate.
All-in-One: The Resources Hub
You’ll find all things EMS on the’s completely updated Resources Hub. This comprehensive resource center makes it easy to search for, browse and download a wide variety of documents, reports and guidelines created by NHTSA’s OEMS, our partners and other stakeholders.
Highlights from February Meeting of the National EMS Advisory Council (NEMSAC)
Catch up on the progress NEMSAC is making on recommendations regarding EMS in February’s meeting and register to attend their upcoming meeting this month.

Summer 2022

NEMSIS Data Update
EMS agencies nationwide continue contributing to the National Emergency Medical Services Information System (NEMSIS), providing valuable information that helps improve evidence-based practices in patient care. As of 2022, all states and U.S. territories with only two exceptions have joined the ranks (indicated in green), submitting ePCR data to version 3—the latest system update—of the NEMSIS National EMS Data Standard. But it’s the announcement of the addition of incident geographic location to the national database that has policymakers, researchers, and public health officials most excited about the growing ability of EMS data to inform health research and quality improvement at the national level.
New NEMSAC Members Set Priorities for 2022-23
Despite facing enormous challenges over the past two years, EMS organizations and clinicians may have more promising opportunities than ever. In their November 2021 and March 2022 panel meetings, NEMSAC's newest members gathered to discuss priorities for the industry. Read more here about the issues they addressed, from EMS as an essential service to cybersecurity.
A Farewell from Dr. Jon Krohmer
The recently retired director of the NHTSA Office of EMS expresses his profound gratitude for EMS clinicians and organizations alike in his farewell letter and encourages continued collaboration and evolution in the industry.
NASEMSO Releases Evidence-Based Guideline on Prehospital Pain Management
Funded by NHTSA and the Health Resources and Services Administration, this project examined current aspects of pain management in prehospital care, such as opioids, health disparities, and pediatric care. An expert panel consulted recent scientific literature to develop the evidence-based guideline that will help state and local EMS organizations and clinicians provide the best possible care.

Fall 2021

First Responder Mental Health and Suicide: An Evidence-Based approach
A collaboration between federal agencies, researchers and national organizations is seeking ways to collect better data and support data-driven approaches to improving first responder mental health.
Don’t Let Railroads Become Roadblocks
Blocked railroad crossings can delay EMS response and transports, but resources exist to help first responders facing these or other situations involving trains and incidents on railroad tracks.
FICEMS Releases Telemedicine Framework for EMS and 911
A new framework published by federal agencies and an upcoming EMS Focus webinar address the potential of telemedicine in EMS and 911 and provide resources to help organizations implement programs in their communities.

Spring 2021

Twenty Years of National EMS Data
Twenty years after its inception, the National EMS Information System is clearly serving the role envisioned all those years ago by providing critical data during the COVID-19 pandemic, facilitating EMS research and supporting innovations like the recently launched ET3 Model.
NEMSAC Acts on Education, Other Critical Issues
The members of the National EMS Advisory Council wrapped up their terms after several productive years representing the EMS community and its partners in Washington.
New COVID Webinar, Resources and More on
Recent EMS Focus webinar featuring CDC and EMS experts as well as new resources on offer critical insights and support for EMS organizations entering this new phase of the pandemic.
John Chew, former NHTSA EMS analyst, dies at 76
John Chew, a former NHTSA Office of EMS staffer, died in January. His legacy includes the National Park Service’s EMS program and the original EMS Agenda for the Future.
New Prehospital Emergency Care Article Addresses EMS Medical Care of Animals
Whether caring for injured law enforcement canines, pets rescued from fires or stray animals during disasters, EMS clinicians sometimes find themselves facing questions related to treating non-human patients. NHTSA Office of EMS public health fellow Katharyn Kryda, a veterinarian and disaster health specialist, recently published two articles that help shed light on the answers.
Seeking Input on First Responder Mental Health and Suicide
The NHTSA Office of EMS is collaborating with NIOSH and the NCICP to prioritize research and education regarding first responder mental health and suicide. In this blog post, learn more about the research, what challenges lay ahead and how you can be a part of finding solutions to this devastating problem.

Winter 2021

Reporting Ambulance and Equipment Defects Can Improve Safety
Recent webinar underscores the importance of reporting ambulance and equipment defects to improve ambulance safety and prevent crashes.
Meet the New OEMS Public Health Fellow
Ohio native Kate Cunningham brings experience in disaster management and humanitarian aid to the Office of EMS team.
What the New EMS Education Standards Will Mean for EMS
In this interview, Paul Rosenberger, EdD, talks about revising the National EMS Education Standards and the impact the new standards will have on EMS Systems.
EMS Data Helps in Response to COVID-19 Pandemic
Thanks to the National EMS Information System and the EMS Resource Reporting Tool, data being collected by EMS clinicians is shedding light on the pandemic.
DOT Secretary Recognizes Kate Elkins, Jon Krohmer with Prestigious Awards
Kate Elkins and OEMS Director Jon Krohmer, MD, were awarded for their dedication to improving EMS and 911 systems and their leadership in the COVID-19 response.

Fall 2020

Webinar Highlights Ways to Thrive Despite Stress and Adversity
"What we're finding is that adversity doesn't need to be the dangerous stuff that causes us to break down," said organizational psychologist, author and former paramedic John Becknell during a recent EMS Focus webinar. In the compelling and deeply personal session, Becknell and Mike Washington, a Seattle firefighter/EMT and therapist, shared insight into how EMS professionals and their public safety colleagues can use adversity to grow and thrive.
New Resource Reporting Tool Tracks PPE and Personnel Shortages to Enhance Local, State and Federal Response
NHTSA has partnered with the team at the NEMSIS Technical Assistance Center to create a Resource Reporting Tool that allows local EMS organizations to report personnel shortages and PPE supply status to State and Federal officials. NHTSA and its Federal partners also continue to update the COVID-19 page with more resources for EMS clinicians and leaders.
Progress Continues on Education Standards, Evidence-Based Guidelines
Members of the EMS community have been hard at work on several efforts to advance evidence-based EMS systems, including revising the field trauma triage guidelines, updating the National EMS Education Standards, and developing evidence-based guidelines for airway management and treating pain in the prehospital setting.
National EMS Assessment Describes Current State of EMS in the United States
Based on a survey of EMS officials in nearly every state and territory, the 2020 National EMS Assessment provides a national overview of EMS systems across the U.S., building on the previous 2011 national assessment. The study, conducted by the National Association of State EMS Officials through a cooperative agreement with NHTSA, includes information such as the number and types of EMS organizations across the country and who staffs them.
Veteran EMS Clinician, Educator Joins NHTSA Office of EMS Team
In August, Clary Mole became the latest experienced EMS clinician and leader to join the team at the NHTSA Office of EMS. Mole comes to Washington from Atlanta, where he was most recently director of education and staff development for Grady EMS.

Spring 2020

Update from Dr. Jon Krohmer
EMS clinicians across the country are dealing with an unprecedented pandemic. The NHTSA Office of EMS staff is working hard to coordinate with other federal agencies and support the dedicated EMS professionals helping communities fight COVID-19.
New COVID-19 Resources and Webinars
The Office of EMS launched a new page on featuring links to up-to-date resources for EMS clinicians and leaders. Make sure to visit and bookmark this page so you know where to find the latest information relevant to EMS and COVID-19.
Addressing Personal Protective Equipment Challenges
In order to ensure a coordinated, effective response to COVID-19, EMS and other first responder organizations must follow proper procedures for requesting assistance resupplying PPE. Read more about the process here.
EMS Agenda 2050, Federal Role in EMS Discussed at EMS Today
Building the EMS system envisioned by EMS Agenda 2050 will take time but we have to start now, several speakers said at the EMS Today conference in early March. The federal role in supporting EMS systems was also on the agenda at the meeting.
Work on National EMS Education Standards, Other Projects, Continues
While the Office of EMS, its federal partners and EMS personnel across the country are focused on responding to COVID-19, other important work hasn't stopped. Find out more about some of the national projects going on right now.

Winter 2020

Statewide Assessments Help Improve EMS Systems
State EMS systems consist of a complex network of entities that coordinate a vast number of resources focused on one important goal–saving lives. NHTSA convenes expert panels to assess those systems at the request of state EMS officials in order to help them make improvements.
Leaders of Federal Agencies Meet to Discuss EMS Priorities
Members of the Federal Interagency Committee on EMS gathered in Washington in December to discuss the issues facing local and state EMS systems and how federal agencies can support them.
National EMS Quality Alliance Releases Performance Measures
Building on the work of the EMS Compass initiative, the National EMS Quality Alliance, a new coalition of EMS stakeholders, has released performance measures to help EMS organizations benchmark and improve. Find out more and register for a webinar on January 30.
Revision of National EMS Education Standards Continues
A decade after the publication of the original National EMS Education Standards, the EMS community is continuing to revise and update the standards to meet the evolving needs of the patients and communities they serve.

Fall 2019

Save More Lives with CPR LifeLinks
According to the American Heart Association, only about 10% of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest victims survive. CPR LifeLinks offers a suite of resources to assist services in implementing high-performance CPR and telecommunicator CPR programs so more people can return home after suffering cardiac arrest.
What’s in a Name? EMS Stakeholders Discuss the Profession’s Nomenclature
According to the National EMS Advisory Council, more than 35 different words or phrases are used to describe EMS and the practitioners of EMS. A stakeholder working group has been convened to further discuss the council’s recommendations to adopt the term “paramedicine” and change the nomenclature of EMS clinicians.
Evidence-Based Guideline for EMS Use of Naloxone Now Available
New evidence-based guideline for EMS administration of naloxone offers recommendations for the route of administration as well as guidance on dosing, titration, timing and transport.
Review and Comment on Draft of Revised EMS Education Standards
Ensuring EMS education programs prepare the workforce to best serve their patients and communities is a priority of NHTSA and our federal partners, as well as EMS leaders across the nation. Your opportunity to review and comment on the first draft of the updated EMS Education Standards begins August 16.

Spring 2019

Creating New EMS Education Standards
An ongoing initiative to revise the National EMS Education Standards will align them with the recently released 2019 National EMS Scope of Practice Model, and the latest evidence and current EMS practice.
A Closer Look at How Next Generation 911 will Transform EMS
Since most 911 systems were built using analog technologies, public safety answering points (PSAPs) across the country need to be upgraded to a digital or Internet Protocol-based 911 system, known as Next Generation 911 (NG911). Implementing NG911 in U.S. states and counties will require coordination between emergency communications, public safety, legislative and governing entities.
Creating a People-Centered EMS
The result of a two-year collaborative effort to craft a bold vision for the next several decades, EMS Agenda 2050 describes people-centered EMS systems. Learn more about EMS Agenda 2050 and how you can play a vital role in creating the future of EMS.
2019 National EMS Scope of Practice Model Now Available
Reflecting the latest evidence and best practices in EMS care, the newly released 2019 National EMS Scope of Practice Model aims to improve EMS personnel licensure level consistency and serve as a valuable resource for State officials. Learn more about the Scope of Practice Model, watch a helpful webinar and download a copy today.
New Public Health Fellow Leslie Carson Joins the Office of EMS
New public health fellow joins the Office of EMS team, bringing data expertise as well as social work and public health experience.

Winter 2019

The Office of EMS Welcomes New Staff Members
The NHTSA Office of EMS is pleased to welcome four new staff members. Each of them brings a valuable and unique background to the Office and they look forward to contributing to an improved emergency system of care.
NHTSA Hosts EMS Agenda 2050 National Implementation Forum
The Office of EMS hosted the EMS Agenda 2050 National Implementation Forum in the fall of 2018, where leaders from EMS, healthcare and public health discussed the future of EMS and how to come together to create a people-centered EMS system.
Developing an Evidence-Based Approach to Prehospital Pain Management
With the opioid crisis at an all-time high, the Office of EMS is supporting a review of the research and evidence related to prehospital pain management to find safe and effective methods to reducing patients’ pain.
NEMSAC Welcomes New Members to Council
Twenty-three leaders representing different sectors within EMS were recently appointed to two-year terms on the National EMS Advisory Council. They met for the first time in October to discuss a number of issues facing EMS systems today and set priorities for the council.
Federal Officials Meet to Coordinate Work on EMS Issues
The Federal Interagency Committee on EMS met in December to address a range of EMS topics, including improving prehospital care for trauma victims and the upcoming publication of the National EMS Assessment 2020.

Fall 2018

CDC Researchers See Value in EMS Data
Thanks to an agreement between NHTSA and the CDC, researchers at the nation’s health protection agency can now more easily access national EMS data to study issues ranging from stroke to trauma to opioids. Dozens of CDC scientists learned more about the information collected by EMS clinicians and how they can use it to help solve some of the nation’s most pressing public health problems.
Federal Officials Discuss EMS Issues, Including Disaster Response, Opioids
The Federal Interagency Committee on EMS met earlier this summer, with officials from several agencies gathering to discuss a range of EMS topics. Funding for data interoperability, the opioid crisis, regionalization of disaster response and the revision to the EMS scope of practice model were just a few of the issues addressed.
New NEMSAC Appointees to Focus on Provider Wellness
In July, the Secretary of Transportation appointed 24 members to the National EMS Advisory Council (NEMSAC), each representing a different sector of the community. The new NEMSAC membership reflects the addition of a representative of EMS quality improvement professionals.
New Faces at the Office of EMS
The NHTSA Office of EMS welcomed one familiar face and one new face to the team this summer. Jeremy Kinsman, who has been serving as a public health fellow in the office, is now the newest EMS specialist. The Office also wishes farewell to Cathy Gotschall in her retirement after more than 19 years of federal service.

Spring 2018

Paramedics Access Patient Outcome Data – A Full Circle Success Story
Learn how an EMS agency in Utah received near real-time patient updates and outcomes through a data exchange with the state’s health information network.
New Dashboard Shares EMS Traffic Crash Data
Valuable information collected by EMS providers who respond to traffic crashes is now easily accessible beyond the EMS community for research, collaboration and more.
Free ACEP Training on Improving Care Using AACN Data
A free online course (1 CME credit) helps EMS and 911 medical directors understand how Advanced Automatic Collision Notification technology can be used to improve care for those injured in motor vehicle crashes.
New Guidelines for Teaching Mass Casualty Incident Triage Support Unified Emergency Response
New resources from the Office of EMS offer specific provider-level guidelines for teaching the Model Uniform Core Criteria for Mass Casualty Incident Triage, which help ensure a consistent response across agencies and jurisdictions.

Winter 2018

Revision of National EMS Scope of Practice Model Moves Forward
A draft of a revised National EMS Scope of Practice Model, which establishes standards for the different EMS licensure levels, has been released for public comment. In addition, narcotic antagonists, tourniquets and wound packing have been added to the EMR and EMT licensure levels.
Improving Trauma Care to Reduce Preventable Deaths
Federal agencies recently hosted a listening session to discuss ways to implement the recommendations of a groundbreaking report on trauma.
Susan McHenry Retires After Four Decades of EMS Leadership
NHTSA Office of EMS Program Manager Susan McHenry retired at the end of 2017.
Federal EMS Committee Meets to Discuss EMS Issues
Members of the Federal Interagency Committee on EMS approved a letter requesting a meeting with White House officials to discuss improving the nation’s trauma system.
National EMS Advisory Council Announces New Recommendations to Advance EMS
Members of the NEMSAC approved five advisories on topics ranging from EMS nomenclature to the national opioid epidemic.