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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services


Working Together to Better Serve Children in Disasters

Author: Emergency Medical Services for Children, Health Resources and Services Administration
Published Date: 5/9/2014 10:40:00 AM
Category: Observances; Public Health Preparedness;

Author: Emergency Medical Services for Children, Health Resources and Services Administration

Spreading the Word about National Emergency Medical Services for Children Day

Everybody responds differently in a disaster – physically, emotionally and psychologically. But children require some special care. That’s why healthcare professionals, EMS and trauma system planners need to learn about and implement methods for providing, improving and expanding specialized care for children in prehospital and acute care settings.

This year marks the thirtieth anniversary of the Emergency Medical Services for Children (EMSC) Program, which is led by the Maternal and Child Health Bureau within the HHS Health Resources and Services Administration. The program focuses solely on improving the quality of pediatric emergency care before and during hospitalization. The EMSC Program works with its partners to ensure that quality pediatric service is integrated into the overall emergency medical service system, including prevention, acute care and rehabilitation.

During a disaster, responders rely on the systems that they use every day to help them protect health and save lives when every second counts. That’s why the EMSC Program is working to integrate disaster preparedness into everyday emergency care systems for pediatrics. We are working through grants and aligning programs and measures with the HHS Hospital Preparedness Program.

Although we have seen improvements in the ways that we care for children over the last thirty years, there is still more that we can do together to help keep children who have been impacted by disasters safe and healthy. We urge you to join us as we continue to improve and expand specialized care for children in the prehospital and acute care settings.

Looking for ways to help? You can start by raising awareness and asking your friends and colleagues to do the same. EMS for Children Day is May 21, 2014 and we are asking for individuals, healthcare providers and communities to help us spread the word. HRSA has prepared outreach materials for web, e-mail and social media; ideas for celebrations and ways to raise awareness; fact sheets and activity sheets; templates and more to help you get started. You can access all of these great resources at EMSC Day. Help us celebrate 30 years of promoting the health and safety of children in emergency setting by getting others to join in and learn more.


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