The Responder

The Responder
Official Publication of the USA Department of EMS Education and the Center for Emergency Response Training
Volume 9, Issue 1
Fall 2005
Ask yourself: “Where did the
EMS regions go?” The six EMS
regions of our state-wide EMS
system were designed to give the
individual EMT a voice in the
EMS system through
representative council boards, to
provide economical education and
training and to disburse funding
and/or equipment to supplement
the equipment inventories of the
response agencies in the field
within each region. In addition, the
Alabama Department of Public
Health’s EMS Division (the state
EMS lead agency) used the regions
for oversight and relied upon them
heavily as a networking tool
between the state and the EMS
provider. Most EMTs in Alabama
are vaguely familiar with how the
national EMS system developed,
Region 1
North Alabama EMS, Decatur
Region 2
West Alabama EMS, Tuscaloosa
Region 3
Birmingham Regional EMS System,
Region 4
East Alabama EMS, Anniston
Region 5
Southeast Alabama EMS, Dothan
Region 6
Southwest Alabama EMS, Mobile
but very few are familiar with how
the Alabama system, including the
EMS regions, came about and how
the system could allow the regions
to die out. The culprit here has
been money, or rather the lack of
it. This article will discuss the fate
of the regions and how their
disappearance affects your career
and practice as an Alabama EMT.
The landmark research project
“Accidental death and disability:
The neglected disease of modern
society” conducted by the National
Academy of Science/National
Research Council outlined the
need for an organized system of
training and regulation of the
ambulance industry and led to the
National Highway Safety Act of
(EMS Regions continued on page 2)
State EMS Division Provides Insight and Answers
With all of the recent developments
that have transpired in the State
over the last few years; such as
proration, the closures of some of
Alabama’s regional EMS system
offices, the introduction of a new
Medicare fee schedule and EMS data system
requirements for ambulance service providers; we
felt it was well-timed to formulate a number of
questions to ask the staff of the State EMS Division.
We requested their comments so that the EMS
community can get a better understanding of these
major issues and a sense of how these issues are
being responded to by our profession.
We appreciate the staff of the State EMS Division
for taking the time to answer these questions and
for providing their insight into these very important
EMS issues and topics. Each question below has a
short prelude to introduce the reader to the topic
prior to the actual question.
(State EMS Answers continued on pg. 5)
EMS Working Through Accreditation
Required Basic CombiTube Training
USA EMS Conducts Pilot Study
Emergency Services News in Brief
Please visit our website:
The Responder
EMS Regions (continued from page 1)
To comply with federal
mandates, Alabama passed the
“Alabama Ambulance Act” (also
called Public Law 1590) in 1971 to
regulate the ambulance industry
in Alabama, which previously had
no set standards to operate by.
As our profession developed
nationally, the federal “EMS
Systems Act” was passed in 1973
after which followed Alabama’s
“Code of Alabama 1975, Section
22.18.1,” which established the
EMS system that we all know.
As part of the Code of Alabama
1975 EMS laws, the state
established six multi-county
regions that were tasked with
providing education, medical
oversight, equipment disbursement
and cost-free training to Alabama’s
volunteer and paid EMS providers.
The EMS regions were designed to
have approximately equal
populations; in other words, each
region served approximately 1/6th
of the state’s population.
Consequently, the EMS regions
serving sparsely populated rural
areas covered many counties over
a large geographic distance and
those serving more populated
areas, such as Birmingham, had
much smaller geographic areas.
The regions were originally funded
with monies from the federal
government under the EMS
Systems Act which tapped through
the Department of Health,
Education and Welfare under the
so-called “1200 series” of grants.
Each region filed its own yearly
grant, which was validated by the
Alabama Department of Public
Health’s EMS Division, and were
paid designated funds directly
from the state after it received the
federal money tapped by each
grant. Adequate and consistent
funding during their formative
years allowed the regions to meet
the expectations of their charters,
the Department of Public Health
and the EMS community.
In 1980 President Ronald
Reagan changed the system of
disbursement of federal monies to
the states. Instead of earmarking
certain monies for individual
programs, Reagan’s “block grant”
system simply disbursed funds
directly to each state to use at its
discretion. As EMS was largely the
brainchild of the federal
government - which required
states to enact programs based
upon federal guidelines - each
state reacted differently to the
availability of previously
designated EMS funds. As a result,
many EMS systems across the
country found themselves in a
state of crisis following the
initiation of block grants. At the
same time, the original 1200 series
funds were considered “seed
money” to start EMS programs in
areas that would otherwise not be
able to afford an EMS system. The
block grant system arose about the
time that the initial funds were
“drying up” and funding became
quite an issue, especially in the
state of Alabama.
From the onset, Alabama’s EMS
regions had determined that
federal funding was not sufficient
to meet all of the responsibilities
placed on them by their charters.
Each year they had to approach
the Alabama Legislature to secure
funding through an EMS
Appropriations Bill. Alabama’s
legislators were, and still are,
supportive of EMS funding needs
in our state, and have funded the
regions through several different
methods. Since the regions must
provide low-or no-cost continuing
education and training to the EMS
providers within their areas, they
have been funded with education
resources. Over the last decade,
EMS regional funding has largely
come from the state’s Education
Trust Fund. Similarly, many other
worthwhile non-EMS education
projects for the citizens of Alabama
drew from education funds, such
as Mobile’s Exploreum, the statewide AIDS project, and the
Alabama Commission on Aging.
Funding Alabama’s EMS system
has always been problematic. A
case in point is the Alabama
Department of Public Health’s
EMS Division (the state EMS lead
agency) which is funded from the
budget of the Alabama
Department of Public Health, but
until recently received additional
monies through the Education
Trust Fund, to cover operational
costs to administer EMS regional
performance contracts and
funding. The Education Trust
Fund monies for EMS regions
dropped a total of 21.2 %, due to
budget cuts between 1999 and
2003. As state funding decreased
over time, the EMS Division and
regions responded by tightening
their belts. Along with this, a
major funding issue developed in
2004. With defeat of his tax
proposals in September of 2003,
Governor Riley was unable to raise
state revenues. As a result he
immediately had to exclude all
non-educational entities from
funding through the Education
Trust Fund. His executive decision
forced the EMS Division to
reconfigure their budget, placing
funding for the EMS regions in
great jeopardy.
The governing boards and
administrators of several EMS
regions attempted to prevent their
funding from being lost by
EMS Regions continued on page 3
The Responder
EMS Regions (continued from page 2)
approaching the Chancellor of the
Alabama Department of
Postsecondary Education, Dr. Roy
Johnson, to ask for help. The
Department of Postsecondary
Education oversees the Alabama
Community College System which
includes all two year colleges,
technical colleges, and other
technical training entities. Dr.
Johnson agreed to help the EMS
regions by bringing them into the
Department of Postsecondary
Education and to hire their staff as
state employees. He also agreed to
house them in the college system
facilities and to absorb into his
system’s inventory all of the
training and office equipment the
regions had accumulated over the
years. In return, he was to receive
the state’s earmarked monies for
regional EMS funding and
maintain the regions under his
umbrella of operations.
Of the six original regions, two
decided that they would remain
independent of the Department of
Postsecondary and attempt to
derive funding independently and
through private enterprise. Within
a year, three of the four regions who
joined the Department of
Postsecondary Education were
completely dissolved, their
employees terminated, and their
funding and equipment retained.
The fourth region, Birmingham
Regional EMS System (BREMSS),
continues to be funded through
Postsecondary, but is closely aligned
with the University of Alabama at
Birmingham, which is not part of
the postsecondary system and
affords it some level of protection.
The remaining two operating
regions are Southeast Alabama
EMS (SEAEMS, Dothan) and West
Alabama EMS (WAEMS,
Tuscaloosa). They are surviving at
the moment but are struggling as
they seek funding and business.
Loss of funding has prevented them
from performing the roles that they
traditionally provided for the
Alabama EMS Division and loss of
the regional system as a whole has
affected the State’s efficiency in
oversight and enforcement as well
as the networking and dialog
functions that have always existed.
So how does this affect you as an
EMS provider, EMT or Paramedic?
Currently funds that were
dedicated to achieving goals to
which we, as EMTs, have dedicated
our lives are being used for other
purposes not associated with EMS.
In addition, we have lost our rights
as citizens, and as EMTs, because
we are no longer represented at the
regional level by local expert
providers to which we can voice our
opinions, suggestions or problems.
Our life’s work is being
haphazardly manipulated by
politicians who have no idea of the
threats and challenges we face in
the field. The system that we all
worked so diligently to develop and
maintain, the system of saving
lives, is in danger of collapse or at
least of being rendered less effective
than our patients deserve. And
whose fault is it? I hate to confess,
but the fault is our own.
EMS in general, and Alabama
EMS in particular, is plagued with
the most despicable ailment
possible: apathy. Not apathy toward
our responsibilities or our patients;
we are totally dedicated to them,
but apathy toward ourselves, our
own self interests and our own
profession. We give of ourselves so
much to achieve our patient care
goals that it is unthinkable to
imagine our profession as lacking
the courage to care of ourselves, but
the evidence speaks for itself. Field
providers have always looked to
others to champion their cause;
physicians, hospital administrators,
politicians and fire chiefs. The EMS
regions are a wonderful example of
this, and politics has adversely
affected the whole, entire system of
EMS provision.
How can we change our
profession to protect ourselves and
our interests? We can start by
taking responsibility for ourselves
and not allowing others to guard
our interests. EMS will always rely
upon our physicians to oversee our
patient care, but we must not
always solely rely upon our
physicians to protect or support us.
In today’s legal environment, with
insurance and reimbursement
issues, physicians are challenged
just to take care of themselves. The
same is true with the nursing
profession. EMTs can follow the
example of nursing, however, by
strengthening our profession, by
improving our educational
standards and by performing
formal self-study research. We must
encourage those within our ranks to
educate themselves and then stay
in the profession to strengthen it,
rather than leaving it for other
areas of interest. We can only do
that if salaries improve along with
working conditions. We must
strengthen ourselves politically by
understanding and participating in
the political process. We must do as
both nursing and the fire service
has done in past decades and work
FOR ourselves in order to provide a
better service to those who depend
upon us. Only by educating
ourselves, by understanding our
work dynamics and by believing
in ourselves can we truly provide
the level of service possible to
our patients.
The Responder
USA EMS Currently Working through Accreditation
The Department of EMS
Education has completed
the final step in the
process of accreditation.
The Department was
first accredited in 1990
by the American Medical
Association and its accrediting
agency, CAHEA. In 1994, the
AMA ceased accrediting EMS
programs and the Commission
on Accreditation of Allied
Health Programs (CAAHEP)
assumed the responsibility.
USA EMS has been nationally
accredited through CAAHEP
and remains the only nationally
accredited paramedic program
in the area. “National
accreditation is important for
our students and our
communities of interest,” states
Program Director Vince Parker,
“It is a type of consumer
protection for our students and
the surrounding pre-hospital
agencies that hire our students;
a program that does not offer
national accreditation cannot
assure that their graduating
students meet even the
minimum standards. Through
national accreditation our
students are assured that they
are receiving the quality
education they are paying for.”
For a list of nationally
accredited programs in the
state of Alabama, you can
access the CoAEMSP website
The renewal process for
CAAHEP accreditation started
with an extensive self-study
written by Program Director
Parker, completed and
submitted in December of 2004.
In August of 2005 an on-site
visit hosted by the Department
Chair and faculty of USA EMS
was completed. The site visit
consisted of a CoAEMSP board
member and program director
from EMS Learning Resources
Center, University of Iowa
Hospitals & Clinics, Iowa City,
Iowa; and a program director
from the EMT-Paramedic
Program, Department of Allied
Health, Nicholls State
University Houma, Louisiana.
The site visit team reviewed
program policies, procedures,
files, student records, lesson
plans and student evaluation
instruments. The team also
met with current paramedic
students, recent graduates,
internship sites preceptors
and administrators from our
different ALS field sites.
The site visitors met with the
program’s medical director,
Dr. Frank S. Pettyjohn and
clinical personnel that are
involved with our students.
The final step in this process
occurs in February when
CoAEMSP will make a
recommendation to CAAHEP
on whether to approve our
continued accreditation or to
make any recommendations.
An exit report by the site
visitors to the USA EMS
faculty found that the program
had no deficiencies and that the
performance evaluation by the
team was rated excellent.
On September 20 of this year, USA hosted the first ever Southwest Alabama Training Coordinators Forum.
This group was formed as a way to fill the training gap left when the regions were dissolved.
The mission is to address training issues as well as keep those tasked with training for their services up to
date with local, state and national issues. This group is open to any providers that are responsible for EMS
training at their worksite or service. The plan is for the group to meet on a quarterly basis for the time being,
but that may be changed based on the needs of the group. The next scheduled meeting is January 24, 2006,
time TBA, and will be conducted over lunch at the facilities of the USA Department of EMS Education.
For more information about this group, please contact Lyndal Curry at 251-431-6418 or e-mail at:
[email protected]
The Responder
State EMS Answers (continued from page 1)
Q: We understand that there have been a number of
recent changes in the organizational structure of the
Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) as it
relates to Emergency Medical Services (EMS). How
has the ADPH been re-structured as it relates
to EMS and what advantages do you feel this
re-structuring will have on your operations?
Q: We understand that over the last few years, the
State EMS Division has lost a number of important
positions, both clerical and professional staff, due to
state-mandated proration and budget cuts
Compounding this problem for your office and the
EMS community was the additional loss of
personnel and support at the EMS regional level.
How has the recent budget cuts affected the
operation of the State EMS Division and what
can the EMS community and the public at
large expect from the Division during these
difficult times?
A: Trauma and EMS have been combined with the
Center for Emergency Preparedness under the
direction of Dr. Chris Rosko, Assistant State Health
Officer for Emergency Response. This configuration
better allows utilization of financial and human
resources, and positions EMS for better funding
opportunities for the Statewide EMS and Trauma
A: The legislature recently allocated additional
funding for the Statewide Trauma and EMS
functions. We have already contracted with two
physicians (Dr. John E. Campbell & Dr. William E.
Crawford) to serve as assistant EMS medical
directors. We will also be reinstating the deputy
director position and hiring additional support staff
in the very near future.
Q: As you know, five of Alabama’s six regional EMS
organizations (with the exception of the Birmingham
Regional EMS System) lost their State funding in
2004, when the Chancellor of the Alabama
Department of Post-Secondary made the
administrative decision to pull these organizations’
funding and redirect the funds to other non-EMS
related projects (See article 1, "Where Did the EMS
Regions Go?"). As a consequence of this action, three
of these organizations (North Alabama EMS, East
Alabama EMS, and Southwest Alabama EMS) were
forced to shut down their operations and cease all
EMS-related activities; such as ALS inspections,
EMS equipment and training grants, continuing
education and credentialing services, etc. Two of the
organizations (West Alabama EMS and Southeast
Alabama EMS) continue to limp along and have
substantially scaled-down their activities due to loss
of State funding. We understand that the Alabama
Department of Post-Secondary will probably never
again earmark these monies for Public Health or
EMS related activities Assuming that the state
funding for these five regional EMS
organizations is lost to ADPS forever, what is
the State’s plan for re-establishing some sort of
coordinating body or health system
organization in these five areas of the State?
Q: As you know, many state and regional EMS
systems around the country are supported by funds
that are generated through special taxes and/or
fees; such as motor vehicle taxes, alcoholic beverage
taxes, etc. What are your feelings about
introducing legislation that would generate
state dollars for EMS operations using these
sources of revenue streams?
A: We are always open and supportive of any
legislation that would truly enhance the Statewide
EMS & Trauma program.
Q: Are there any current plans to introduce
legislation in the Alabama legislature next
year to obtain additional funding for EMS?
If so, please explain.
A: Not that we are aware of at this time.
Q: What can the EMS community do to assist
the State EMS Division in this endeavor?
A: The Office of EMS & Trauma will be contracting
with six entities to continue regional agency
involvement on a somewhat limited basis in hope of
additional funding for more involvement in the
A: Continue to educate your local political leaders
for the need of appropriate State funding for EMS
& Trauma.
State EMS Answers continued on page 6
The Responder
State EMS Answers (continued from page 5)
Q: We understand that the National Registry of
EMT’s (NREMT) will begin their transition to
computer-based testing (from the current pencil and
paper exams) for Basic EMT and Paramedic written
examinations in January 2007. For many EMS
training institutions this in only four semester
cohorts away from implementation. What is the
State EMS Division’s plan for implementation
of these exams in the State of Alabama?
shortages in certain parts of the US. Some observers
have even said that Alabama has a number of hot
pockets that are in need of additional EMS
personnel. It has been suggested that a number of
factors contribute to this shortage, including poor
wages and working conditions, long work hours,
increased educational requirements, and competition
with other higher paying occupations for our
potential students. What is the State’s perspective
concerning this perceived shortage of EMTs
and Paramedics in some parts of Alabama?
A: The NREMT has committed to moving to
Computer Based Testing and is in the process of
preparing states for a January 2007
implementation date. Alabama has been chosen to
assist them in a pilot for EMT Basics for the
summer of 2006.
A: We are very much aware that this is not only an
issue in our State, but is a major issue on a national
basis. Several national studies are being conducted
which we will monitor closely.
Q: Over the last several years, there has been a
national effort to standardize EMS data reporting in
the pre-hospital setting through the National EMS
Information System (NEMSIS) project. As you know,
the majority of the States (including Alabama) have
adopted the minimum data elements outlined by the
NEMSIS project. What is the status of the
Alabama EMS Information System (AEMSIS)
and what kinds of progress have we been
making in this area?
Q: In the early 1990’s, the staff of the State Office
developed its first ever “state EMS plan” that was
eventually approved by the State Committee of
Public Health in December 1993. This strategic
plan was comprehensive in nature, contained
system-wide goals and objectives, and thereby set in
motion state, regional and local actions designed to
improve EMS. It is believed that some of the goals
and objectives of the plan have been achieved,
whereas many others have not. Is the EMS state
plan still used as a written guide or
considered a viable document in order to
improve EMS in Alabama? Please explain.
A: We have over 75% of all providers collecting and
transmitting data electronically. We have recently
completed a statewide audit of the data. Our QA/QI
committee has completed a statewide intubations
study which was presented at the SEMCC (State
Emergency Medical Control Committee) meeting.
A: The State Plan served our office well as a guide
during the 90’s and assisted in accomplishing many
goals. Since then our strategies and goals have
been directed by the production and release of the
many “Agendas” published and endorsed by the
NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety
Administration) office.
Q: Over the past couple of years, many national
EMS journals and news magazines have
highlighted the problem of EMS manpower
The responsibility of any journal is to provide precise facts to the open society of its readers for the
purpose of information so that opinions and actions of its constituents may be formed based upon
truthful knowledge. This special edition of The Responder, the newsletter of the University of
South Alabama, Department of Emergency Medical Services Education, is intended to inform the
EMS population of the state of Alabama at large of events impacting our profession in our state and
shaping our future.
If you wish to become a regular recipient of The Responder, please contact Gail Knox,
251-431-6418 or e-mail: [email protected] and request to be placed upon our normal mailing
The Responder
As of January
31, 2006, all
licensed EMT
Basics must
complete a
training module on the dual lumen CombiTube in
order to be re-licensed. All training programs have
been required to teach the CombiTube as part of the
initial Basic EMT course as of January 2005. Any
Basics who completed their initial training after that
date will not be required to take the update module.
Only instructors that have completed the “Train the
Trainer” course at an official site are authorized to
teach the CombiTube module.
Take note: All Basics must be trained on the
CombiTube, but not all Basics will be allowed to
use this device. Only Basics that work for a licensed
service, which has a Medical Director, will use the
CombiTube. And, as expected, use of this device is
protocol driven. If you haven’t been trained on the
CombiTube, you must contact the EMS training
coordinator for your service to receive the required
Required Basic
EMT CombiTube
Lyndal Curry, EMT Basic Coordinator, demonstrates the
placement technique for the CombiTube.
Time is growing short – Basics, don’t get caught
without this update module!
For questions or comments regarding CombiTube
training you may contact Lyndal Curry at
251-431-6418 or e-mail: [email protected]
2006 Continuing Education Schedule
The following schedule reflects our American Heart Association training; BLS (Basic Life Support CPR), ACLS
(Advanced Cardiac Life Support) and PALS (Pediatric Advanced Life Support). If you have any questions or
comments please contact our continuing education coordinator, Dave Faggard (Uncle Dave) at 251-431-6418 or
email at: [email protected]
Jan. 9, 2006
Jan. 12 & 13, 2006
Jan. 26 & 27, 2006
Feb. 9, 2006
Feb. 13, 2006
1-day re-cert
Mar. 9 & 10, 2006
Mar. 13, 2006
Mar. 23, 2006
1 day re-cert
April 6 & 7, 2006
April 10, 2006
April 20, 2006
1 day re-cert
May 8, 2006
May 11 & 12, 2006
June 8 & 9, 2006
June 12, 2006
Oct. 5, 2006
Oct. 16, 2006
Oct. 26, 2006
1 day re-cert
1 day re-cert
July 10, 2006
July 13 & 14, 2006
July 27, 2006
1 day re-cert
Nov. 9 & 10, 2006
Nov. 13, 2006
Aug. 14, 2006
NOTE: “HCP” = Health Care
Sept. 11, 2006
Sept. 14 & 15, 2006
No classes for December
The Responder
2004-2005 Graduates
Our department salutes the accomplishments of our 2004-2005 paramedic graduates.
Anderson, Jessica
Ard, Evan
Becker, Brent
Biggs, Charles
Black, John
Clark, Richard
Cooper, Jacob
Cox, James
Patrick, Adam
Smith, Charlotte
Spitznagle, Ryan
Weaver, Mack
Woodard, Danny
Zirlott, Mitchel
D’Angelo, Gary
Huggins, Blake
Hunt, Patrick
Irving, Melissa
Kinkead, James
Knight, Todd
Kyte, Keith
Martell, Paul
The Department of EMS Education congratulates the following students who graduated
with a baccalaureate degree in interdisciplinary studies with EMS as a primary field of
study during 2004-2005:
Conner, Jeremy
Singleton, Chadwick
Scholarly Quotes:
Learn avidly. Question repeatedly what you have learned. Analyze it carefully. Then put what you have learned
into practice intelligently. Author: Edward Cocker (1631-1676 AD)
Learning without thought is labor lost; thought without learning is perilous. Author: Confucius (551-479 BC)
University of South Alabama EMS
To Conduct Pilot Study for Bridge Program
The Department of EMS
Education was recently granted
permission by the Alabama
State Emergency Medical
Control Committee to conduct
an Intermediate to Paramedic
bridge program starting fall
semester 2005. The proposed
program, IPAP (Intermediate to
Paramedic Advanced
Placement) would allow
currently licensed and
credentialed intermediates to
start the paramedic curriculum
at USA EMS at a higher level
of course work. “Our goal is to
provide an avenue for current
intermediates to complete their
paramedic training,” states
program creator Vince Parker.
Department Chair David Burns
stated that, “Our program is
working on innovative ideas to
increase the number of
paramedics graduating from
our program.” He states further,
“We want to be responsive to
our communities of interest and
meet their expressed needs any
way we can.” The faculty at
USA EMS understands that
there is a shortage of
paramedics in our area and
along with our extensive
recruiting efforts we see the
IPAP as another means of
getting new paramedics into
the system. The IPAP program
will allow the intermediate to
complete paramedic training in
three semesters, once they are
admitted into the program.
The Alabama State
Emergency Medical Control
Committee will assess the
effectiveness of the program
and will consider allowing other
institutions in the state to use
the IPAP format in their
programs. If you are interested
in enrolling in the USA IPAP
program for spring semester
2006, you can contact Vince
Parker at 431-6418, or e-mail:
[email protected]
The Responder
Emergency Services News in Brief ...
Kristen McKenna Receives National
EMS Award
Vince Parker Completes Master of
Science Degree
Kristen McKenna, a skills lab instructor with
USA’s Department of EMS Education, and a
paramedic with Mobile’s American Medical
Response Ambulance Service, was recently
awarded the National EMS Star of Life Award by
the American Ambulance Association. The award,
bestowed on May 3, 2005, was for meritorious
service in the field with AMR and for Kristen’s
work in the field of EMS education. When asked
how she felt receiving a national award for her
work, Kristen replied cheerily in typical fashion; “I
was excited, it was really great!” We at the USA
Department of EMS Education congratulate
Kristen on the honor of national recognition of a
job well done in EMS. We look forward to many
more years of working with her to educate our
area’s paramedics.
Vince Parker, EMS Program Director for
Clinical Skills, has completed his Master of
Science degree in Instructional Design and
Development this year. We congratulate his
efforts after many years of hard work.
Jeff Carter Now “Daddy Jeff”
Jeff Carter, lead associate EMS instructor, is the
father of a bouncing baby boy named Jackson
born in August. Congratulations “Daddy Jeff!”
Lyndal Curry Completes Master of
Arts Degree
Lyndal Curry, EMS faculty member and Basic
EMT Coordinator has completed her Master of
Arts degree in Health Sciences from the
University of Alabama. We congratulate her
efforts and look forward to many more years of
association with her in our program.
USA Children’s and Women’s
Hospital Receives New Neonatal
Transport Unit
USA’s Children’s and Women’s Hospital
unveiled its new neonatal transport ambulance, a
gift from the Alabama Logger’s Council, on
Tuesday, July 26, 2005. The new transport unit,
“Care For Babies,” a specialized $154,000
Chevrolet diesel truck, is equipped with an
hydraulic lift that can has a capacity of 450
pounds and is large enough to accommodate two
incubators. The USA Children’s and Women’s
Neonatal Intensive Care Unit plans to eliminate
long response times by maintaining a ready crew
at all times and to do away with the necessity of
triaging babies in multiple birth situations and
returning to pick up the less severely ill infants
with a second crew. The Neonatal Intensive Care
Unit admits about 200 premature infants each
year from surrounding hospitals within a 150mile radius.
Gary Varner Appointed Alabama ACLS
National Faculty
Gary Varner, EMS faculty member and
epidemiologist, was appointed to the American
Heart Association’s Alabama Emergency Cardiac
Care Committee as Alabama’s ACLS (Advanced
Cardiac Life Support) National Faculty member.
His responsibilities include disseminating new
ACLS guidelines from the national level into
Alabama’s American Heart Association training
The Responder
February and March and integrated into the
operations of the state’s community training
centers (CTCs). Changes are the result of new
evidence-based clinical findings that are assessed
and adopted by the scientific teams of the
American College of Cardiology and the
American Heart Association.
David Burns Appointed Co-Chair
of Mobile Citizen’s Public Safety
David W. Burns, EMS Department Chair, was
recently appointed by Mobile’s newly elected
mayor, Samuel L. Jones, to co-chair a citizen’s
planning committee on Public Safety. The Public
Safety Committee, one of 26 separate committees
and task forces set up by the new mayor’s
administrative team, will study the operations of
the police and fire-rescue departments and will
then forward a list of recommendations to be
incorporated into the city’s new strategic plan.
The committee’s final report will be submitted to
the mayor’s office in December.
C.E.R.T. To Offer Special New Classes
In 2006
The Center for Emergency Response Training
will begin offering the following new courses in
• Clandestine Drug Lab Response—
Awareness & Operations and
Technician levels
• Disaster Preparedness for Emergency
Managers—Awareness & Operations
• Weapons of Mass Destruction for:
•Law Enforcement
•Emergency Managers
EMS Education Department
Completes Alabama Paramedic
Licensure Study
USA’s Department of EMS Education completed
a cross sectional study entitled Analysis of Age,
Gender and Ethnicity in Alabama Paramedic
Licensure in October 2005. The analysis was
performed with oversight from the university’s
institutional review board and the results
forwarded to the Alabama Department of Public
Health, State EMS Division. The study identified
paramedic licensees and recommendations were
made to state health officers for possible
These offerings will be included in the upcoming
CERT 2006 brochure. Also, in mid-year, we plan
to start up a safety course for asbestos workers—
exact details will be forthcoming.
Industrial Fire Brigade Training and
CERT Call for Support
Mobile needs a way to do industrial fire brigade
training—end of story. Local industries now
must travel away from home—to Texas and
Louisiana, usually—to get this training,
incurring extra expenses for travel and lodging.
The CERT program director has, over the past
two years, been working with the local
emergency planning commission (LEPC) and
emergency planners to try to find a solution.
The University and CERT stand ready to work
with local industry and agencies to seek
solutions for this training need. Please call the
CERT program director at 431-6527 with your
American Heart Association To
Release New Guidelines in 2006
The national office of the American Heart
Association is expected to release the new
guidelines for Basic Life Support (BLS) Advanced
Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) and Pediatric
Advanced Life Support (PALS) in Dallas, Texas in
January 2006. The information will then be
released in “Rollouts” by the Alabama American
Heart Association system in the months of
The Responder
A Big Thank You from CERT
CERT would like to thank all of our faithful customers for your continued support and feedback,
which allows us to provide much-needed safety and health training to our local community and
beyond. As you are probably aware, CERT receives no outside funding for our efforts and we rely
solely on support from our clients. Thank you and have a happy and safe 2006!
12oz bottle of beer (your choice)
1/2c ketchup
1/2c BBQ sauce of your choice (I use Jack Daniels)
1tsp Sesame seed oil
2tbls minced garlic
1tbls Cavanders Greek Seasoning
Chris Dabbs is an Alabama
1- 6oz bottle hot sauce of your choice
Paramedic and EMS Manager, as
Tabasco Chipolte' hot sauce
well as a trained chef.
Soy sauce
He says of his “other” profession:
Moores Marinade
2tbls Oyster sauce
Cooking has been a passion for
Whole limes juiced
me all my life and always will. I
2tsp Southern Charcoal flavoring
became a medic in 1996 and have
salt and pepper to taste
been a medic non-stop since. The
exception is when I took a year off
to attend culinary school in
Mix all the above items in large bowl
Scottsdale Arizona. I am a father
and taste to adjust salt and pepper.
of three and love to cook for friends
Using approx. 40-50 wings minus the
and family. It is a dream of mine
tips mix in sauce, let wings stand for
to own a restaurant of my own one
at least 30 min. and up to overnight,
day. Let me know what you think
then just grill over medium heat till
of my wings!!
done. An alternate twist is to take the
sauce that is left and simmer it over
Chris Dabbs
low heat till reduced by half and use
it as a dipping sauce for the wings.
NOTE: You may send your questions and comments regarding this and other
recipes to Chris via e-mail at: [email protected]
University of South Alabama
Department of EMS Education and
Center for Emergency Response Training
2002 Old Bay Front Drive
Mobile, AL 36615-1427
U.S. Postage
Permit No. 506
Mobile, AL
The Responder
Department of EMS Education
Center For Emergency Response Training
David W. Burns, M.P.H., EMT-P
David W. Burns, M.P.H., EMT-P
Frank S. Pettyjohn, M.D.
Medical Director
Rob Maxwell, M.F.A., M.S.
CERT Program Coordinator
David Garmon, M.Ed., NREMT-P
Program Director / Curriculum & Student Services
Reggie Norton, EMT-B
Senior Instructor
Vince Parker, M.S., NREMT-P
Program Director / Clinical Skills
Paul Phillips, EMT-B
Lyndal Curry, M.A., NREMT-P
Faculty / Basic Coordinator
Josh Vaughn, EMT-B
Gary Varner, M.P.H., NREMT-P
Faculty / Epidemiologist
Chad Sprinkle, EMT-B
Charlie Erwin, EMT-P
Clinical Coordinator
James Peavey, EMT-B
David Faggard, EMT-P
Continuing Education Coordinator
Gail Knox
Stanley Vinson, NREMT-P
Adjunct Instructor
Sharon Walker
Thad Weishaar