County executive, commissioner of emergency services recognize EMS accomplishments
43rd annual national observation celebrates, honors first responders
Today at the Erie County Emergency Services Training and Operations Center in Cheektowaga, Erie County Executive Mark C. Poloncarz was joined by Emergency Services Commissioner Dan Neaverth Jr., members of the Erie County Emergency Medical Services department and emergency medical service providers from around Erie County in proclaiming "EMS Week" in the county. A national observance, this 43rd annual EMS week runs from May 15-21, and honors the thousands of EMS practitioners serving communities across the country.
"The members of emergency medical service teams are ready, around the clock, to provide lifesaving care to those in need. They are on the scene moments after disaster strikes and are on the front lines every time they are needed," Poloncarz said. "Their efforts can mean the difference between life and death, and their sacrifice and commitment to our community are invaluable. First responders perform a difficult but vital public service, often with little recognition, and deserve more thanks than we can give for the work they do."
National EMS Week was first recognized by President Gerald Ford in 1973 and brings together local communities and medical personnel to publicize safety and honor the dedication of those who provide lifesaving services at a moment's notice. This year's theme is "Called to Care."
EMS personnel include emergency physicians, nurses, medical technicians, paramedics, firefighters, educators and others. Working as a team, these lifesaving providers deliver medical care wherever it's needed.
Emergency Services Commissioner Neaverth Jr. added, "During a medical emergency, car accident or overdose, the difference between life and death can be a matter of seconds. Every day, thousands of EMS responders in Erie County answer the call, making that difference. Each of them serves as the backbone of our EMS delivery system. We celebrate their compassion and dedication this week, and I encourage the public to join me in doing the same."
Erie County Emergency Services recently launchediVolunteerEMS.org in support of the recruitment efforts of the five volunteer EMS emergency squads and dozens of volunteer fire departments that provide emergency medical services in their communities across the county. It serves as the partner site to iVolunteerFIRE.org, Erie County's recruitment headquarters for volunteer fire and emergency services.
Anyone interested in volunteering is encouraged to visit their local volunteer emergency squad or fire department, email iVolunteerEMS@erie.gov or call the county's volunteering hotline at 716-601-3021.