Collegiate EMS Providers Convene to Learn, Compete and Collaborate!
Philadelphia, PA - The eighteenth annual conference of the National Collegiate Emergency Medical Services Foundation (NCEMSF) was held February 25- 27 at the Loews Philadelphia Hotel. 875 representatives of campus-based EMS organizations from 92 colleges and universities across the U.S. and Canada attended the conference marking the largest gathering of both campus EMS providers and organizations to date.
NCEMSF is a non-profit organization committed to scholarship, research and consultancy activities and to creating safer, healthier environments on college and university campuses throughout North America. Comprised of over 250 college campus-based emergency medical service (EMS) agencies trained to respond within minutes and provide care tailored specifically to campus emergencies, NCEMSF's purpose is to support, promote, and advocate for EMS on college and university campuses. The annual conference is the cornerstone of the Foundation and creates a forum for communication and an environment where ideas can be exchanged and problems solved.
"Beyond providing for the acquisition of medical knowledge, campus-based EMS allows student participants to develop certain life skills including leadership, team work, communication, and decision making, while simultaneously positively impacting other people's lives," ·said Dr. George Koenig, NCEMSF President. "These crucial skills serve participants well no matter what careers they ultimately choose."
"Perhaps what is most impressive about campus based EMS is that it is students helping fellow students - the vast majority of organizations are led by the same students attending those colleges or universities. The enthusiasm, optimism and dedication that exists amongst this talented group of young, professional adults is contagious and truly awe inspiring," commented Dr. Koenig.
"As a Foundtion, we are continuing to grow and expand," said Dr. Scott Savett, NCEMSF Vice President and Chief Technology Officer. "In a time when so much networking is done online, this conference proves that face-to-face communication cannot be replaced as a powerful tool to further develop these organizations. The ability to energize and bring so many together for 36 hours of learning, sharing, and socializing is a testament to our members' dedication to furthering the cause of campus-based EMS."
This year's conference program included over 110 lectures, roundtable discussions, expert panels and skills labs packed into two and half days of amazing programming ranging from the treatment and management of various traumatic and medical emergencies to EMS research to leadership development and strategic planning for the collegiate EMS agency. Other lectures discussed the role of prehospital ultrasound, medical simulation, EMS and public health and the potential pitfalls of social media networks as well as large event planning and disaster preparedness. A series of roundtable discussions took place in which leaders and advisors from various university squads reviewed common problems facing their squads and challenged themselves to find innovative, feasible solutions. The conference also featured several skills labs focussing on airway management, advanced ECG interpretation, improvisational splinting and transport of patients and simulated resuscitation scenarios.
Edward T. Dickinson, MD, FACEP, NREMT-P, Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine and Director of EMS Field Operations at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania as well as medical editor of JEMS and multiple EMS textbooks, delivered the Major John P. Pryor, MD Memorial Lecture on Mechanisms of Injury in Blunt Trauma. Dr. Dickinson also shared his own inspirational experiences as a prehospital provider in college and relayed how the lessons he learned helped shape his career and propel him to where he is today.
The Richard W. Vomacka Student Speaker Competition afforded pre-selected conference attendees the opportunity to deliver a relevant high-quality seminar to their peers on a topic of their choosing. The competition was judged on the initial abstract submission, session slides and lastly presentation style, content, applicability and ability to relate and interact with the audience. Daniel J. Johnson, won the competition with a seminar entitled "Event Medicine: Creating a Safer College Campus"
Several individuals and campus EMS organizations were recognized at the conference with annual awards for service.
* Collegiate EMS Week Award - Cornell University
* Collegiate EMS Video of the Year - University of Delaware
* Collegiate EMS Web Site of the Year - Rochester Institute of Technology
* Dr. George J. Koenig Jr. Service Award - Douglas R. Buchan (University of Iowa)
* Collegiate EMS Advisor of the Year - Michael Newton (University of Wisconsin - Madison)
* Collegiate EMS Provider of the Year - Jason Smith (Clark University)
* Collegiate EMS Organization of the Year - University of Pennsylvania
Fourteen universities were recognized for having completed NCEMSF's Striving for Excellence program, a rigorous self-evaluation and three year accreditation process demonstrating adherence to current best practice patterns. The recipients represent benchmark organizations that others strive to emulate.
Sixteen universities also received special recognition in honor of their milestone anniversaries ranging from 10 years of service to 55 years of service to their respective campuses. Cornell University EMS (35 years) and The Pennsylvania State University University Ambulance Service (55 years) had their awards presented by now well established alumni who remain active leaders in their respective communities.
The annual Physio Control Collegiate EMS skills competition in which team's clinical, leadership and creativity skills were tested was won by Texas A&M. SUNY Stony Brook won the advanced life support version of the competition and the privilege of representing the whole of campus-based EMS in the annual JEMS Games at EMS Today in Baltimore later this week.
For more information about NCEMSF or the 2011 Conference, including a copy of the complete program, please visit the Foundation´s website at www.ncemsf.org. The 2012 NCEMSF conference is scheduled for February 24-26, 2012 in Baltimore, MD.