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EMS Professionals on Capitol Hill Speak on EMS as an Essential Public Function With Congress at EMS On The Hill Day

Mar 25, 2014

On March 26, over 190 EMS professionals from 42 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico conducted 248 visits with their members of Congress and congressional staff  during the fifth annual EMS On The Hill Day in Washington, D.C.  Hosted by NAEMT, the event brought together EMS practitioners, managers, educators, and physicians representing all EMS delivery models.

Participants discussed with federal legislators and their staff the essential and cost-effective role of EMS in our nation’s changing healthcare system. They  requested support for legislation addressing the key challenges in delivering quality patient care, and explained the the benefits to communities of fully integrating EMS within the continuum of healthcare to improve patient outcomes and lower healthcare costs.

The annual EMS On The Hill Day addresses the need for EMS professionals to meet, face-to-face, with their federal legislators to discuss issues that impact the ability of EMS to respond to daily 911 calls, and serve as an essential component of our nation’s disaster preparedness and response network. The Hill Day event is part of a broader strategy to advocate to all levels of government for the support needed to improve patient care. “EMS advocacy is not just for those in leadership positions… it’s for everyone in EMS who cares about the future of our profession,” said NAEMT President Don Lundy. “If EMS wants an improved environment for delivering quality care to our patients, then everyone in EMS has to advocate.”

Supported by many national- and state-level EMS organizations, EMS On The Hill Day includes scheduled congressional appointments, pre-Hill visit briefing sessions for registered participants, as well as time for peer interaction and debriefing discussions.  Beyond March 26, EMS professionals are encouraged to share their professional insight with elected officials at the local, state and federal levels, and to take advantage of the advocacy tools and resources at www.naemt.org.