The future is now for EMS
What will you do to make it happen?
By Art Hsieh
In 1996, The EMS Agenda for the Future envisioned the concept of the community health advanced medical provider (CHAMP) as an evolutionary step in the EMS system development.
In a scenario, a CHAMP evaluates a non-English speaking patient experiencing what turns out to be ischemic chest pain.
Through technology and wireless communications, the CHAMP not only treats the patient appropriately but also performs a series of follow up care steps to ensure that the patient returns to a fuller state of health.
Sometimes science fiction evolves into reality. This article is proof that our profession is slowly, but steadily making progress in its evolution as a predominant field care provider in the health care spectrum.
While the arena of the hospital and clinic are dominated by physicians, nurses and PAs, EMS providers have been comfortable working in the uncontrolled environment of the outside world since the beginning. It makes perfect sense that we push ourselves to find new roles in this space, and learn the new skills and knowledge necessary to perform them well.
We cannot allow old paradigms to keep us where we've always been — that will not serve us well. Our health care system is already demanding better performance from its infrastructure - to be more efficient and more effective.
To that end EMS will have to finds its place and assert its influence in the space we know best — in patient's homes, work places and on the street. As Minnesota demonstrates, it's not rocket science. It just requires the intelligence, creativity and will of the community to make it happen.