By Joseph Pratt
April 4, 2014
By Joseph Pratt
The Sixth Annual Tri-State Fire/EMS (Emergency Medical Services) Education Day, organized and sponsored by HealthNet 4/MedFlight 7, was held Saturday at Shawnee State University, where helicopters, mock scenes and educational training was offered for local EMS providers who needed educational hours.
The event draws in around 150 people and offers seven hours of training on fire or medical credentials, and HealthNet said they are very lucky and appreciative of Shawnee State for lending their campus to the event, because of its growing size every year and demand for more space.
One of this year’s additions is Healthnet catering to more vendors attending the event. This years event saw over half a dozen vendors who all provided information on what their company offers to the line of EMS work.
Veronica Neale, flight team leader of HealthNet 4/MedFlight 7, is a flight paramedic who organizes the annual educational conference. She has been involved with the conference since its inception, when Brian Spangler of MedFlight helped get it started, and now leads the project herself.
Neale said the project was created because of the amount of requests they received from EMS professionals who were seeking educational hours to complete their requirements for certification. If the providers were unable to find a class, they would no longer be able to legally serve and it would leave the county with one less EMS professional. Neale also said the event is a nice way to bring their community of EMS providers together for an annual gathering.
The program continues to grow every year, because the organization is dedicated to taking opinions from attendees at the event.
“It has been really great,” Neale said. “Every year, we take suggestions from the firefighters about what they’d like to see in training and programming. We just started the firefighting section only three years ago, because we were getting a lot of requests and I think we have 43 or 45 firefighters this year.”
The focus of the event has continued to be education, which is important, because most training can become expensive for EMS workers. The classes are taught by professionals from the Columbus area, who offer a more expansive course than what is offered locally, such as treatment methods for burn victims.
“The event is very important and we always get people requesting details about it six months in advance, so it is enjoyable as well. Not only that, but it is a major benefit for the community by increasing EMS knowledge by professionals from Riverside, OSU and more that come in and teach them,” Neale said.
Joseph Pratt can be contacted at the Portsmouth Daily Times 740-353-3101, EXT 287, or by Twitter @JosephPratt03