Emergency Medical Services for Children

EMSC 35th Anniversary LogoThe mission of the Alabama Emergency Medical Services for Children (EMSC) Program is to prevent and reduce child, youth and adolescent disability and death resultant of severe illness and injury. Provision of education for the prehospital professionals; continual permanent installation of the EMSC program into Alabama’s EMS system; and ensure that pediatric equipment, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics/American College of Emergency Physicians (AAP/ACEP) guidelines, is available on prehospital emergency vehicles that transport children.

Emergency Medical Care Needs of Children

Injury is the #1 cause of death in children. This year alone, 14 million children under the age of 15 will be injured seriously enough to require medical attention. These are tragic figures, especially since injuries are not accidents; they have predictable patterns, circumstances and at risk groups.

Accidental fatalities occur as a result of unintentional injuries. The major causes of unintentional injury deaths studied in detail include motor vehicle accidents, house fires, drowning, suffocation, and firearms.

2016 Pediatric Accidental Death Rate* - Alabama Residents

  • under 1 year = 44.4
  • 1-4 years = 9.4
  • 5-9 years = 7.9
  • 10-14 years = 5.9
  • 15-19 years = 37.4

*per 100,000
Source: ADPH Center for Health Statistics

Taking Action, Saving Lives

The federal Emergency Medical Services for Children (EMSC) program supports projects in the states to expand and improve emergency medical services for children who need treatment for life threatening illnesses or injuries. The program has funded pediatric emergency care improvement initiatives in every state, the District of Columbia, and five U.S. territories. The Alabama Office of EMS (OEMS) has been actively involved in the federal EMSC State Partnership Program and institutionalizing EMSC into the EMS Program since 1995. The Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) took strides to ensure that the special needs of children were included in protocols and education components when licensing Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT’s) in the 1990’s and early 2000’s.

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Page last updated: October 9, 2019