21st Annual EMS Conference Sharpens Skills of Vermont’s Rescue Personnel

For Immediate Release: March 28, 2009
Media Contact: Communication Office
Vermont Department of Health
802-863-7281

BURLINGTON – Only one conference in Vermont each year addresses topics that include vehicle extrication, hemorrhage control, lightning strike injuries and special medical needs in your back yard.

The 21st Annual Emergency Medical Services (EMS) conference will be held Saturday and Sunday at the Sheraton in South Burlington with more than 500 participants attending educational sessions, workshops, lectures, presentations and an awards ceremony and banquet.

The conference provides continuing education for EMS personnel across Vermont.  The program also includes exhibitors of ambulances, emergency care products, programs and services.

Vermont Department of Health Commissioner Wendy Davis, MD, will be the keynote speaker on Saturday at 9 a.m.

“Every medical professional in Vermont has tremendous respect for the work of the EMS crews in Vermont. They are truly a dedicated group of professionals doing excellent work on the frontlines of protecting public health,” Dr. Davis said.

The event is organized by the Vermont Department of Health's Office of Public Health Preparedness and EMS.  The Initiative for Rural EMS at the University of Vermont organizes pre-conference workshops and sponsors a series of presentations on Sunday given in honor of David Pilcher, MD, a retired professor of surgery at the UVM College of Medicine. Dr. Pilcher arrived in Vermont in 1969 and was instrumental in developing a statewide emergency medical services program in Vermont.

Other topics covered in the educational sessions include alcohol related emergencies, congestive heart failure, children with diabetes, ocular trauma, strangulation injuries, pain management and special needs patients.

Emergency Medical Services System (EMS) is composed of approximately 180 licensed First Response and Ambulance services staffed by 3,000 certified EMS providers. EMS personnel serve as pre-hospital emergency care providers that include First Responders/Emergency Care Attendants, EMT Basics, EMT Intermediates and Paramedics. The majority of EMS providers in Vermont are volunteers.

The banquet and awards ceremony to recognize outstanding EMS personnel will be held Saturday, 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

For more information about the conference visit healthvermont.gov, or see the conference brochure at: http://healthvermont.org/hc/ems/documents/2009EMSConferenceBrochure.pdf

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