National Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Week is May 19-25 and this year’s theme is, “EMS Strong: Beyond the Call.” The American College of Emergency Physicians has provided a planning guide to help make this year’s EMS Week special for your agency and the community. In this guide, you will find ways to recognize the dedicated service provided by your personnel team, examples of activities and events to host throughout the week and inspiring articles that uplift and celebrate the strength of those in EMS. Learn more about EMS Week in Virginia: http://www.vdh.virginia.gov/emergency-medical-services/ems-week-2019/
How do you plan to get your agency involved in National EMS Week? This special week offers the best opportunity to showcase the vital role that your agency has in the community. To add to the excitement of the week, each day has been appointed a theme that represents the many sides of EMS. The five daily themes for the week include, Education, Safety, EMS for Children, Save-A-Life (CPR and Stop the Bleed) and EMS Recognition.
We encourage you to share your EMS week activities on our social media pages at the Virginia Office of Emergency Medical Services on Facebook and @virginiaems on Twitter. Be sure to use the #EMSSTRONG hashtag. Here are some additional tips to help create an exciting event plan for EMS Week:
- Generate great interest and support for EMS Week in your community by visiting local schools, churches, town meetings and community events; share the important role of EMS and offer preventative tips for people of all ages on staying safe and healthy.
- Celebrate the entire week with your coworkers just for being in the profession of servitude and saving lives. Take advantage of the free EMS Week events sponsored by local hospitals, organizations and other health-related associations in your community and region.
- Host an open house event and offer training and safety activities for all ages. Some training activities include hands-only CPR and Stop the Bleed education. This will allow EMS providers the chance to connect with the community through life-saving skills training and for community members to see how important EMS is in their locality.
- EMS for Children (EMSC) Day is Wednesday, May 22. Hold an event with a local school to give students an opportunity to tour the ambulances, fire trucks, helicopters and other response vehicles, as well as to interact with EMS providers.
- While preparing for EMS Week take the time to honor your fellow EMS personnel by nominating them for a Regional EMS Council Award. Each regional winner will have the chance to receive a Governor’s EMS Award. Contact your Regional EMS Council for more information.
- Reiterate to staff members the importance of stress management and when to seek help if stress symptoms are prolonged. Learn more about the Virginia Office of EMS’ “Make the Call” mental health and wellness campaign.
- Network and recruit new employees or volunteers. EMS Week is the best time to showcase the rewarding benefits of being part of an EMS team. Host a job fair or provide fact sheets and giveaways at local events to increase interest in your agency.
Remember, your community relies on your public service to health and education! Create a partnership that will show them how your agency goes “Beyond the Call.”