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From monkeypox to state licensure, to certification requirements and funding recruitment programs, it’s been a busy few weeks in EMS news. In this episode of Inside EMS, our cohosts, Chris Cebollero and Kelly Grayson, run down the biggest news stories of the day, and what they mean for the future of EMS.
Together, they discuss:
- Monkeypox. With cases now identified in all 50 states, including a handful of pediatric cases, is it time to be anticipatory in preparing for a monkeypox emergency? Chris and Kelly discuss how transmission method, decontamination practices and COVID fatigue all come into play.
- State licensure. After the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment announced that it has established an EMS task force to evaluate medical services, systems and a state licensing system, Chris and Kelly applaud their efforts and encourage others to look to other states for programs and solutions to EMS staffing issues.
- A state-funded EMT class. Pennsylvania is using state dollars to fund an EMT class for underemployed residents, supported by the Johnstown Fire Department, with training provided by Conemaugh School of Emergency Medical Services Program Director Mike Rodgers. Kelly notes this creative solution will hopefully help to grow the EMS talent pool, but cautions, “we don’t have a paramedic shortage; we have a shortage of paramedics who are willing to work in toxic environments.” As long as the graduates are placed in positive environments, he can’t see a downside. “Hopefully this seed corn that Pennsylvania is developing here isn’t spoiled and is allowed to take root in a positive environment with a good agency and help relieve some of the staffing woes there in Pennsylvania,” he comments.
- NREMT certification proposal. Finally, our cohosts discuss the EMS story that had everyone up in arms. After a lively comment period, the National Registry rescinded a resolution that would have changed EMS certification eligibility criteria. Kelly noted in his opinion, and according to the majority of comments received, this was a potential step backward for EMS. Our cohosts discuss how the comment period worked exactly as it should, and the National Registry listened to the stakeholders, while also putting education standards front and center.