The overall goal of this project is to develop a national agenda for the future that helps ensure a viable EMS workforce. The EMS Workforce for the 21 st Century project has been guided by a steering committee of EMS experts and has solicited the input of 15 national EMS stakeholder organizations. The project begins with this assessment of the EMS workforce, specifically EMTs and paramedics, which serves to address questions and policy issues that are critical to the future of EMS. The assessment was conducted using various quantitative and qualitative approaches including literature review, data analysis, and key informant interviews. The fundamental research questions for this study, which are listed below, are based on input from the stakeholder organizations who met with the research team in the spring of 2005.
- Will the EMS workforce supply be of adequate size and composition to meet the needs of the U.S. population in the future?
- How can potential workers be attracted to and encouraged to stay in the field of EMS?
- How can adequate EMS workforce resources be available across all populations and geographic areas
- Does the EMS community have the data and information needed to address the future demand for and supply of EMTs and paramedics in the U.S? What information is lacking and how might it be obtained?
Rural Health Workforce – Emergency Medical Services (November 2005)
This is an official policy position of the NRHA addressing the reality faced by EMS systems in rural areas. EMS systems in rural America struggle with poorly defined geographical boundaries, high call volumes, longer transport times and the lack of acute or specialty care facilities. The NRHA believes developing an adequate workforce, adequate funding, possessing modern technology and having appropriate medical oversight for volunteers and career providers of EMS, as well as federal government initiative is ncessary to address the myriad of problems faced by rural and frontier EMS.
The goal of this qualitative research project was to determine the feasibility of creating a surveillance system that captures the extent of occupational illness and injury in the EMS Workforce. The report includes the findings of a consensus panel that resulted in an agreement of EMS and data system stakeholders on the utility of existing data systems, a set of data elements and characteristics of the surveillance system. The EMS Consensus Panel also concluded that a comprehensive surveillance program should rely on integration of data systems to accomplish the goal of this project.