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Emergency Medical Services

The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) provides training, research and outreach to help keep emergency medical services (EMS) personnel and their patients safe and help prepare fire departments for special EMS operations.

EMS updates

COVID-19

Get your answers to frequently asked questions about funding and read the latest guidance on planning, response, infection control and behavioral health.

NEW Vaccine information for EMS clinicians

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Your role in safe air medical transport

Find out about recommendations from the National Transportation Safety Board to ensure emergency responder safety when requesting air medical transport.

Air medical flight operators are not yet required by the Federal Aviation Administration to have a safety management system in place.

Read the recommendations

Training opportunities

Train with the best to be the best! National Fire Academy classroom and distance learning courses cover supervisory management practices, incident command for medium to large patient incidents, and management and planning of specialized EMS operations.

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Featured course

ON-CAMPUS
Emergency Medical Services: Quality Management (R0158)

Acquire the skills you need to create, implement and maintain an EMS quality management program by exploring current models and best practices.

View course description

We implemented additional training opportunities for new intubation equipment using different methodologies. All platoons have improved their success rates after the training.

R0158 student
InfoGram

New OSHA COVID-19 program impacts EMS agencies

The National Emphasis Program will review agency respiratory programs and use inspections to protect workers against COVID-19.

Read the article

Social media outreach

Post these cards on your social channels and include your own content to reinforce the messages.

Pictographs

Use these pictographs to communicate 911 and first aid messages to high-risk populations.

Publications

Alive on Arrival: Tips for Safe Emergency Vehicle Operations

Arrive safely to an incident scene

Information on the basics of emergency vehicle and roadway operations safety, including the roles of drivers, passengers and the officer in charge.

Download the handout

Operational Templates and Guidance for EMS Mass Incident Deployment

Prepare for mass care incidents

This guide will help you to prepare and develop response policies for mass care incidents like natural disasters, pandemics and other emergencies.

Download the guide

Handbook for EMS Medical Directors

Learn about being an EMS medical director

We've created an overview of key roles and responsibilities to assist current and prospective medical directors in performing their important duties.

Download the handbook

Mitigation of Occupational Violence to Firefighters and EMS Responders

Protect yourself from occupational violence

Best practices for preventing and mitigating violence against firefighters and EMS responders.

Download the guide

Safety and Health Considerations for the Design of Fire and EMS Stations

Design safe and healthy stations

If you are a fire department leader, architect or local government official, this guide will assist you in your efforts to design a safe, healthy and functional facility.

Download the guide

Emergency Vehicle Safety Initiative

Stay safe in your vehicle and on the roadway

Best practices and recommendations for safer emergency vehicle and roadway incident response.

Download the handbook

Browse all EMS publications

EMS reference materials

Get a head start on your EMS research project with these reference materials from the National Emergency Training Center Library.

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New at the NETC Library

book cover
COVID-19 Guidance for EMS Providers

From the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, this book describes the SARS-CoV-2 virus and disease, prevention tactics, vaccine development, treatment, and public health implications, particularly as they affect providers working in the field.

View catalog description

Help victims of human trafficking

Victims of human trafficking might look like many of the people you help as a member of the fire and emergency services—and in some cases, they are. Use and share these resources to learn about the crime and how to be prepared to help prevent human trafficking and treat victims.

Download or order printable reference materials

You can download or order free materials available in several languages from the Department of Homeland Security that:

  • Explain human trafficking.
  • Detail the classical presentations found in trafficking victims.
  • List several common indicators of trafficking.
  • Provide information on how to report suspected trafficking.

Visit the Blue Campaign Resource Catalog to order or download materials to share with fellow first responders.

Report suspicious activity! If you see signs of human trafficking, report it to law enforcement online, or call 866-347-2423.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/CUx5oUF1Q_4

Current Events and Issues

Training helps EMS workers identify human trafficking signs

One of the most effective ways to counter and prevent human trafficking is through the training of health and public safety workers. Training helps workers to correctly recognize and react to signs of human trafficking when interacting with the public.

Read the article

Ongoing research

EMS responder safety study

The safety and health of EMS responders is a critical issue for both fire departments and third service EMS providers. We are working with the International Association of Fire Fighters to study EMS responder health and safety issues, including:

  • Active shooter and mass casualty incidents
  • Emergency vehicle operations
  • Hazardous materials incidents
  • Helicopter safety
  • Personal protective equipment and infection control
  • Lifting
  • Physical fitness and stress management

Estimated study release date: Fall 2021.

Pandemic continuity of response operations, health and safety

USFA is working with the National Association of State EMS Officials to study COVID-19-revealed issues related to continuity of operations and emergency responder health and safety during a pandemic.

Estimated study release date: October 2021.