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EMS on the Hill: A Day to Advocate on Behalf of Emergency Medical Services

EMS on the Hill: A Day to Advocate on Behalf of Emergency Medical Services

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By Allison G. S. Knox
Contributor, EDM Digest

On April 11, emergency medical technicians and paramedics from across the country come together to meet with Members of Congress and their staff about issues affecting Emergency Medical Services in the National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians (NAEMT) EMS on the Hill Day.

Emergency Medical Services (EMS) is not typically a hot-button policy area – certainly not in the way we might see inflammatory issues with gun control or abortion.  However, EMS is one of the most important pieces of any community, yet it is often one of the forgotten policy initiatives. EMS is often coupled with health care policy, but the issues affecting EMS are often more complicated than this. It is an issue area that spans homeland security, emergency management, local governance, medicare and health care. Further, it is an important policy area that needs congressional conversation and discussion.

EMS on the Hill is an event that is not only important to the EMS profession, but is important in helping to make EMS more effective at the federal, state and local levels of government.

EMS on the Hill Day

EMS on the Hill is an event sponsored by the National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians. The event is under a decade old but has been very effective in furthering the conversation about EMS in Congress.

The National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians has worked to set up meetings for all of the EMS on the Hill Day participants in the offices of Members of Congress and their staff. In the first sessions of EMS on the Hill, participants will learn about the various pieces of legislation they’ll be discussing in these meetings during a briefing event.  On April 11, the program participants will meet in individual meetings on Capitol Hill to discuss these pieces of legislation. These meetings are critical to furthering the conversation about the issues affecting Emergency Medical Services. Additionally, EMS on the Hill Day is also a chance to network with other Emergency Medical Technicians and Paramedics – creating more opportunities for conversations to take place – an important piece of fixing some of the issues EMS is seeing across the country.

EMS on the Hill is an incredibly important event for EMS professionals and practitioners. More articles in EDM Digest this week will focus on the various pieces of legislation Congress is reviewing that will have an enormous impact on Emergency Medical Services.

Allison G. S. Knox Passionate about the issues affecting ambulances and disaster management, Allison focuses on Emergency Management and Emergency Medical Services policy. Allison has taught at the undergraduate level since 2010. Prior to teaching, she worked in a level-one trauma center emergency department and for a member of congress in Washington, D.C. She holds four Master’s degrees in Emergency Management, National Security Studies, International Relations, History, a Graduate Certificate in Homeland Security and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science. She is also trained in Technical Large Animal Emergency Rescue, is an Emergency Medical Technician, Lifeguard and a Lifeguard Instructor. She serves on the Board of Trustees for Pi Gamma Mu International Honor Society, Vice Chair of the Tactical Emergency Medical Support Committee with the International Public Safety Association, the Advocacy Committee with the National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians and also serves as the Advocacy Coordinator of Virginia for the National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians.