The EMS Education Agenda for the Future: A Systems Approach (Education Agenda) is now nearly fifteen years old. While much of the current Education Agenda has been accomplished, the ongoing need to assess our progress and its alignment with our educational goals has been recognized. At the suggestion of many national EMS leaders, the National Emergency Medical Services Advisory Council (NEMSAC) convened a national “Roundtable on the EMS Education Agenda for the Future” on March 28, 2012, to obtain input from EMS stakeholders across the entire spectrum of EMS education and clinical practice. The message from our colleagues was clear: many states and localities have only recently begun to experience the full impact of the evolution toward a nationally integrated system of education for EMS personnel; a major revision or change in direction of the Education Agenda could interfere with its ongoing implementation.
Thus, the NEMSAC believes that the Education Agenda should be updated with minor revisions to ensure that it is contemporary. Examples of updates that were discussed during the NEMSAC deliberations included, for example, addressing patient and provider safety, as well as disaster preparedness and public health.
The National EMS Education Agenda for the Future: A Systems Approach can be viewed or downloaded at: http://www.ems.gov/education/EducationAgenda.pdf. More information on NEMSAC, including previous recommendations, is available at www.EMS.gov/NEMSAC.htm.
The NEMSAC openly invites public comment from EMS stakeholders regarding the breadth and depth of these minimal updates. Specifically, we seek advice on key educational issues that were not yet part of the EMS landscape in June 2000 when the Education Agenda was first published. The NEMSAC does not propose to entertain fundamental changes to the structure of the current EMS education system as outlined in the Education Agenda.
Additionally, the NEMSAC will review the public input and will deliberate the issues publicly before making a recommendation to the Department of Transportation regarding minimal updates to the Education Agenda. The NEMSAC will NOT be making recommendations regarding the National EMS Core Content, the National EMS Scope of Practice or the National EMS Education Standards. Those documents fall within the purview of other professional organizations and will be modified, if necessary, subsequent to the modification of the Education Agenda. Likewise, the NEMSAC does not intend to address recommendations concerning National EMS Education Program Accreditation or National EMS Provider Certification.
The NEMSAC recognizes that a more comprehensive revision of the Education Agenda may be necessary in future years – after a new EMS Agenda for the Future, or its equivalent is produced.
The NEMSAC will deliberate the suggested minimal updates to the Education Agenda during its spring 2014 meeting in Washington, D.C. There will be time during that meeting for individuals or representatives of organizations to offer input to the NEMSAC regarding this topic. Written statements are also invited by any EMS stakeholder who wishes to provide comment. To be considered by the NEMSAC written comments must be received by February 1, 2014, at [email protected]