MedicAlert Foundation and CFSI Honor 3 Fire Service EMS Teams

WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 7, 2011) – The Congressional Fire Services Institute (CFSI) and the MedicAlert Foundation presented the 1st Annual Excellence in Fire Service-Based EMS Awards to three fire departments that have championed unique practices to enhance the quality of emergency medical care to their local communities. These new awards recognizing excellence were presented this evening during the 23rd Annual National Fire and Emergency Services Dinner, sponsored by CFSI.

The Excellence in Fire Service-Based EMS Awards program honors fire departments in three categories – Volunteer, Combination and Career Fire Department. The 2011 award winners:

• Volunteer: Odessa Fire Company, Odessa, Delaware

• Combination: Friendswood Volunteer Fire Department, Friendswood, Texas

• Career: Northwest Fire/Rescue District, Tucson, Arizona

The three departments were selected for their best practices in emergency medical services and for their leadership in implementing innovative solutions for enhancing the quality of emergency medical services delivered to their communities. The awards program, itself, was designed to encourage other fire departments to consider similar practices to improve their fire service-based EMS systems.

“Fire Service-Based EMS plays an important role – if not the most important role – in the continuum of emergency medical in this nation,” said CFSI Executive Director Bill Webb. “We are proud to be co-sponsoring this award with the MedicAlert Foundation to recognize those fire departments that are developing innovative best practices to address the growing emergency medical needs in local communities across our nation.”

“First responders are essential to the health and safety of every American.” said Andrew B. Wigglesworth, President and Chief Executive Officer of MedicAlert Foundation. “Through this annual awards program, we hope to spotlight the tremendous accomplishments of Fire Service-Based EMS who we work with everyday to serve our members and help speed the adoption of best practices by other departments across the country.”

About Congressional Fire Services Institute (CFSI)

Established in 1989, the Congressional Fire Services Institute (CFSI) is a nonprofit, nonpartisan policy institute that works with members of Congress in promoting fire and life safety issues. Working with other national fire service organizations, the Institute focuses its attention on issues that benefit all first responders. Members of the Congressional Fire Services Caucus, the largest caucus in Congress, look to CFSI for guidance and information to enhance their level of understanding about the challenges and needs of our nation’s fire and EMS communities. For more information on CFSI, visit www.cfsi.org.

About MedicAlert Foundation

Established in 1956, the MedicAlert Foundation pioneered the use of medical IDs and systems to relay vital medical information to emergency responders on behalf of its members so they receive faster and safer treatment. Today, MedicAlert provides the functionality of an e-health information exchange through an innovative combination of a unique patient identifier linked to a PHR and a live 24/7 emergency response service. MedicAlert medical IDs alert emergency personnel to a member’s primary health conditions, medications or implanted medical devices. In addition to its 24-hour emergency response service, MedicAlert Foundation also provides family and caregiver notification so that members can be reunited with their loved ones. MedicAlert services are available around the world through a network of international nonprofit affiliated organizations licensed by the Foundation. Learn more at www.medicalert.org.

Thursday, April 7, 2011