Tactical Emergency Medical System Workshop Creates Curriculum and Council (Provisional)

Tactical emergency medical personnel work to create a standardized Tactical Emergency Medical System (TEMS) curriculum and a National TEMS Council (NTC).

  • (1888PressRelease) September 08, 2011 - Wilmington, NC - A large contingent of highly trained and experienced tactical emergency medical personnel from paramedics to physicians gathered recently in Dumfries, Va., Aug. 2-4 to participate in a workshop designed to establish a standardized Tactical Emergency Medical System (TEMS) curriculum. Additionally, participants agreed to create a National TEMS Council (NTC) which will focus on research, policy, liaison, future TEMS agenda and leadership issues at the national level.

    "A standardized TEMS curriculum will allow for agencies, jurisdictions, and others to know that those trained by such a curriculum meet a standard required by those in this demanding field," said Program Director Philip Carmona. "It will allow current training programs to crosswalk their respective curriculum against a standard that has been formulated by a known body of subject matter experts."

    More than 50 experienced participants attended including police, fire, and EMS organizations as well as local, state and federal jurisdictions, the Department of Homeland Security, Health and Human Services and Department of Defense. Workshop attendees reviewed 18 initial competency areas and voted (required 2/3 majority) to include, exclude and/or add to the existing document. Participants then broke into small groups to discuss the lifesaving, essential skill sets needed by tactical medics and operators. They ultimately agreed on 17 competency categories. Upcoming meetings will focus on team commander and medical director skills.

    Workshop leaders Richard Schwartz, Director of The National TEMS Initiative (NTI) and Interim Chairman of the Council along with Carmona and co-chairs Dr. Craig Llewellyn and Richard Carmona, the 17th Surgeon General of The United States, helped coordinate the workshop and create the agenda.

    "The vast majority of goals were attained," said Carmona. "A significant milestone has been reached in the 'story' and actualization of tactical medicine organization in the convening of TEMS medics, operators, medical directors, administrators and researchers from diverse jurisdictions and agencies across the United States."

    Prior to the August workshop, several of the attendees had participated in similar initiatives and historically, attempts to unify tactical medicine have failed. However, as terrorism threats and incidents have grown and the ongoing concern for national preparedness and safety grows, a critical need for TEMS unification across all lines has become increasingly apparent.

    The National Association of EMS Physicians and the National Disaster Life Support Foundation sponsored the event through CDC-TIIDE and unrestricted funding respectively.

    A follow-up meeting has been tentatively scheduled just prior to the Special Operations Medical Association Conference in Tampa, Fla., this December. For more information contact Philip Carmona at (706) 721-3314 or email PCARMONA ( @ ) georgiahealth dot edu.

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