FICEMS Releases Collaborative Action Plan to Further Support EMS Nationwide
April 10, 2014
To help to further coordinate federal efforts in EMS, the members of the Federal Interagency Committee on EMS (FICEMS) reached consensus on a strategic plan that maps action steps for federal support of optimal emergency medical services systems nationwide.
FICEMS members recently approved and released the five-year plan at their biannual meeting in Washington D.C. Developed through a collaborative process and funded by three different departments, the plan provides a framework to synchronize interagency efforts and strengthen EMS practices, principles, and strategies throughout the United States. During the meeting, members collaborated on the new vision and mission statement, which provide an anchor for the strategic goals and objectives in the plan.
FICEMS vision statement: A federal interagency committee that enhances coordination and ensures the strategic alignment of EMS priorities among Federal agencies to ensure quality patient care.
FICEMS mission statement: Ensure coordination among federal agencies, supporting local, regional, state, tribal and territorial emergency medical services and 9-1-1 systems, to improve the delivery of EMS services throughout the nation.
"The mission and vision statements clarify the role of FICEMS and our intention to support the needs and efforts of the EMS professionals across the nation who deliver care to their communities daily," said Dr. Kathryn Brinsfield, Acting Assistant Secretary for Health Affairs and Chief Medical Officer of the Department of Homeland Security, and incoming FICEMS chair.
The plan also includes six overarching goals and 30 specific objectives. FICEMS plans to achieve these by coordinating interagency policies, programming, and messaging, as well as soliciting and integrating stakeholder input from across the EMS community, including from the National EMS Advisory Council (NEMSAC).
“The long-term strategic goals will help EMS grow in terms of data collection and quality, the development and sharing of best practices for prehospital care and the development of evidence-based guidelines for system implementation,” said outgoing FICEMS Chair, Ed Gabriel, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response for the Department of Health and Human Services.
At the meeting, members identified four focal areas for immediate action:
- Supporting the development, implementation, and evaluation of evidence-based guidelines (EGBs) according to the National Prehospital EBG Model Process.
- Promoting standardization and quality improvement of prehospital data by supporting the adoption and implementation of National EMS Information System-Compliant systems.
- Improving EMS system all-hazard preparedness, including pandemic influenza, through support of coordinated, multidisciplinary planning for disasters.
- Working with State EMS offices to support the transition of military EMS providers to civilian practice. Many collaborative efforts are already underway, including standardization and quality improvement of data as well as the White House’s priority initiative to support the transition of military veterans into civilian positions.
As FICEMS member agencies work collaboratively toward four immediate focus areas, they will also seek the advice of the National EMS Advisory Council and other stakeholders on how best to implement the full plan over the next five years.
Established by Congress in 2005, FICEMS has coordinated federal agency efforts to support local, regional, state, tribal, and territorial EMS and 911 systems. FICEMS members represent federal agencies of the Departments of Transportation, Health and Human Services, Homeland Security, Defense, and the Federal Communications Commission. Additionally, a state EMS director sits on the committee.
View the FICEMS Strategic Plan here.