EMS workersSunday marks the 46th annual National EMS Week honoring the lifesaving efforts of first responders, emergency medical technicians, paramedics, and all emergency medical services personnel.

Ready Today, Preparing for Tomorrow is the theme of the 2020 EMS Week, presented by the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) in partnership National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians (NAEMT). The theme, which according to the ACEP was developed long before the COVID-19 crisis, is especially meaningful now as EMS professionals are on the front lines planning, adapting, and responding to their communities during this unprecedented public health crisis.

More than 260,000 EMTs and paramedics are working through the uncertainties of the pandemic, like PPE shortages, while still responding to everyday emergencies. They are vital to the health and well-being of our country, and EMS week is the time to recognize the people performing lifesaving services day in and day out.

“As the coronavirus pandemic unfolds, our country and the world are bearing witness to the remarkable dedication, commitment to service and courage of EMS practitioners,” stated Matt Zavadksy, President of NAEMT in a press release. “Communities owe a great debt of gratitude to our Paramedic and EMTs who are serving on the front lines of the COVID-19 response. Please help us recognize the incredible courage and selflessness of our EMS practitioners.”

Communities are asked to recognize the heroic efforts of EMS workers and share their message of thanks with the hashtag #EMSStrong. Although events might look a little different this year, you can still celebrate with the five theme days:

  • Monday: EMS Education Day
  • Tuesday: EMS Safety Day
  • Wednesday: EMS for Children Day
  • Thursday: Save-A-Life Say
  • Friday: EMS Recognition Day

And on Saturday, May 16, you can participate in the 2020 National EMS Moment of Silence, giving special recognition to the EMS personnel with a line of duty death related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Please visit the 2020 EMS Week Planning Guide to learn what you can do to recognize and honor the EMS workers in your own community.

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