The Development of Civilian Emergency Medical Services in the United States

explanatory Essay
1775 words
1775 words

The Development of Civilian Emergency Medical Services in the United States Civilian Emergency Medical Services (EMS) is the most widely used system for emergency services provided in the United States. The United States development of Civilian EMS has evolved and changed since the 19th century. The actual foundation for EMS originated during the Civil War in America and served as the model for future civilian EMS development. During the Civil War Dr. Jonathan Letterman created a system of ambulances due to the disorganization that existed in medical services during the Battle of Bull Run. Surgeon General William Hammond appointed Jonathan Letterman as the Military Medical Director and assigned him with the task of organizing military medical services. Dr. Letterman established an effective ambulance corps, which included techniques in the loading and unloading of soldiers on stretchers into and out of ambulances. Dr. Letterman ordered that all ambulances be staffed with dedicated attendants at all times and be prepared to move immediately and quickly. Ambulances were separated based upon duties and capabilities. Light two-wheeled ambulances retrieved the wounded from the battlefield to the dressing stations. Larger four–wheeled ambulances were held in reserve to move soldiers to facilities such as hospitals. The United States Sanitary Commission (USSC), a private organization founded by the first woman physician in America Elizabeth Blackwell, provided additional aid during the Civil War. The USSC provided essential items such as blankets, medicine, food, and assisted in the creation of field hospitals. The USSC trained and provided nurses to the military in addition to clarifying criteria to be used by medical... ... middle of paper ... ...system’s ability to adopt needed changes in the past. The Committee documented that without accountability participants in the system would not accept responsibility for their failures and could avoid making changes necessary to avoid them in the future. The Committee’s position was that accountability had failed to take hold in EMS systems because responsibility is spread across many different areas of the system. The Committee listed three steps that were required to bring accountability into the emergency care system. The steps include the development of national performance indicators, the measurement of system performance, and public access to performance information. The vision of the Committees’ proposal is that once all three goals have been met future EMS systems as a whole will operate more effectively and efficiently throughout the United States.

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that automobile accidents caused the united states government to realize that there was an urgent need for organizing medical services in the us.
  • Explains that civilian emergency medical services originated during the civil war in america and served as the model for future civilian ems development.
  • Explains that in 1972, the health service and mental health administration became the lead agency for ems. the physician responder program evolved into paramedic programs.
  • States that the committee on the future of emergency care (cfec) drafted a document in 2007 to resolve the breakdown in coordination in the current ems system.
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