Promoting Innovation in EMS

cutter solution that works for every chest pain call, trauma call, or diabetic emergency. Transportation routes differ by destination, traffic, time of day and weather. What worked yesterday may not today. Every day we rise to meet new challenges, whether they are operational, institutional, or cultural. We see first-hand what works and what doesn’t. This means we are in an invaluable position to recognize gaps and use our creative, problem-solving ways to innovate on behalf of our agencies, our systems, our communities, and, most importantly, our patients. To do so, we must embrace life-long learning, not just the nuts and bolts of our daily trade, but also how to research, identify evidence-based best practices, use data to frame solutions, advocate positions, and work with others toward a common goal. Successful EMS leaders and systems embrace this “from the street up” process for innovation. They encourage input from their responders and work with them to translate good ideas into system-wide innovation. Look for every opportunity to innovate. Advocate to create a culture of innovation among your colleagues. What is at stake? Nothing less than the EMS profession in which our successors will work, and the emergency care our children and grandchildren will receive.

the best educational delivery models for their students. Educators should commit to teaching evidence-based medicine with evidence-based practices. They should remind their students that the difference between what they learn in the classroom and “how it’s done in the field” is that the medicine taught in the classroom is evidence- based, and they should encourage students to advocate for more evidence-based medicine in future care delivery. The ideal EMS professional of the future will be a “continuous lifelong learner” and will stay actively connected to current research, will understand research methods and how to use data to solve problems, and will seek out higher educational opportunities. Because of this, the current EMS educator should become familiar with these skills and teach their importance to students. Baxter Larmon, PhD, MICP Professor Emeritus, Emergency Medicine David Geffen School of Medicine at University of California at Los Angeles Founding Director, Prehospital Care Research Forum National Association of EMS Educators on ensuring high quality patient care through protocol development, provider credentialing, education and training, and quality assurance. Our efforts have not, however, always effectively translated from policy and program into ‘rubber meets the road’ quality and value. As such, we are now faced with the compelling responsibility to nurture innovation, and to thereby help redirect the cultural, political and financial forces that typically drive our systems. It is in this respect that we have the unique opportunity to broaden our traditional scope: to utilize clinical research and outcome- based performance measurement to ensure evidence-based patient care through evidence- driven system design, management, and policy development. MEDICAL DIRECTORS As medical directors, we have traditionally focused

Ed Mund Director At-Large, EMS/Rescue Section National Volunteer Fire Council

EMS EDUCATORS Educators have an important role in shaping the personalities, actions and priorities of the future EMS workforce. Technology and evidence-based educational practices are continually changing for EMS educators; future educators must embrace the current evidence in education to provide




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