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  • Tuesday, June 24, 2014 9:17 PM | PAAW Administrator (Administrator)
    The Professional Ambulance Association of Wisconsin Board of Directors is pleased to announce they have recently appointed attorney Thomas Shorter as their consultant on health care matters, to include the Affordable Care Act.  Mr. Shorter is with the firm Godfrey & Kahn in Madison. 

     

    According to PAAW President Patrick Ryan, “Mr. Shorter is highly regarded for his health care knowledge and awareness to ACA.  We look forward to his expertise as we anticipate many questions about ACA and navigating it both as healthcare providers and as EMS employers.  Having this relationship in place will help the Association, its members and other ambulance services that need a resource to consult.”

     

    Mr. Shorter added, “We greatly value our new relationship with PAAW.  Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) the United States is rapidly moving towards more alignment of all health care providers, both clinically and economically.  Ambulance service providers are a critical element of the system, and often the entry-point into the system.  Our expertise in health care and corporate law allows us to partner with PAAW and its members to address the legal issues in the evolving healthcare landscape.  We look forward to a long and relationship with PAAW.”

     

    Mr. Shorter was also recently appointed to the Board of Directors for the American Health Lawyers Association, which is the largest national health law association in the US.

  • Monday, June 23, 2014 7:25 PM | PAAW Administrator (Administrator)
    The Wisconsin Department of Health Services has posted the job search announcement for the state EMS Director position.


    The Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Director is responsible for managing and directing the EMS Unit staff and its programs. The EMS Director assigns, directs, and supervises projects specific or related to emergency medical services.

     

    Responsibilities of this position include leadership, management, and coordination of a complex EMS system across the state, involving federal, state, and local governments, local service providers, hospitals, other public safety organizations, and elements from the private sector, for quality emergency medical care for all Wisconsin citizens and visitors. The EMS Director leads the enforcement activities of all EMS providers regulated by the EMS program and recommends licensure/certification for EMS providers to assure the provision of quality emergency medical services in Wisconsin. This position manages the Unit’s EMS data collection and processing operations, as well as internal quality assurance programs.

     

    Salary is negotiable based on qualifications and will be between $22.470 and $37.076 per hour (approx $46,917 and $77,414 per year).  The application deadline is July 7, 2014.

     

    For more information or to apply, click here.

  • Monday, June 23, 2014 7:15 PM | PAAW Administrator (Administrator)
    All current Wisconsin EMS provider licenses and certifications expire on June 30, 2014, unless you have recently renewed or been issued.


    The mission of the Wisconsin Emergency Medical Services (EMS) program is to ensure that the highest quality and standards of pre-hospital emergency medical care are available to all Wisconsin citizens and visitors. Certification or licensing provides a level of protection to Wisconsin citizens and visitors, and assures that an individual holding a certificate or license has met certain minimum competencies and is authorized to practice, as defined by law. All current Wisconsin EMS provider licenses and certifications expire on June 30, 2014.


    Besides holding a current Wisconsin certification and license to practice as an Emergency Medical Services provider in Wisconsin, you must also be locally credentialed with the service for which you are practicing. Licenses and certifications must be renewed prior to the expiration date of June 30, 2014, in order to continue practicing under your license. To practice as an EMT or First Responder in Wisconsin, you must have a current license/certificate and be credentialed with a service.


    The 2014-2016, Provider License Renewal application is available online through  E-Licensing account for the July 1, 2014, through June 30, 2016, licensing biennium. You must complete the 2014-2016, Provider Renewal application by June 30, 2014, in order to obtain a current certification or license that is valid until June 30, 2016.


    All Wisconsin EMS provider applications are completed in the E-Licensing system. The important renewal dates to remember for 2014-2016, are:


    • November 1, 2013 through June 30, 2014 is the standard renewal period.
    • July 1, 2014 through December 31, 2014 is the late renewals period and incurs a $50 late renewal administrative fee (per DHS 110.16 (1) (a)).


    For more information or to review the long version of this information, click here.
  • Tuesday, June 03, 2014 11:30 PM | PAAW Administrator (Administrator)

    PAAW leadership to meet with DHS officials


    In the next few weeks, the Professional Ambulance Association of Wisconsin will be meeting with officials at the Wisconsin Department of Health Services. 

     

    According to PAAW President Patrick Ryan, “Questions and concerns have been raised in light of recent changes at the State’s EMS Office and its future direction.  We felt now was an appropriate time to contact DHS and have this important conversation, which they scheduled a time with us shortly after the letter was sent.”  He added, “We’ve had productive conversations in the past with officials at DHS and feel we will again.”

     

    The letter sent to DHS identified three areas PAAW would like to discuss, to include:

    1. What are the short and long term plans for the Office and how will the industry’s needs be met?
    2. What is the status of the most recent NHTSA review?  Discussion on the study has seemingly been non-existent.
    3. Concerns with the reduction in Funding Assistance Program (FAP) funds available to state providers.
    As an EMS stakeholder, PAAW is committed to insuring the strength and vitality of EMS in Wisconsin through representation of its members and EMS at-large.
  • Tuesday, May 27, 2014 8:47 PM | PAAW Administrator (Administrator)

    By Melissa M. Trumbull, Industry Relations Manager, NAEMT

     

    On Thursday, May 22, the U.S. Senate, led by Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), Sen. Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) and Sen. Tim Johnson (D-S.D) honored our nation’s EMS practitioners during EMS Week by introducing the S.2400 Field EMS Innovation Act (Field EMS Bill) in the Senate. This bill is the companion to the Field EMS Bill introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives on February 26, 2013, as H.R. 809 by Congressman Larry Bucshon (R-Ind.).

     

    The Field EMS Bill addresses many of the challenges EMS systems face while trying to fulfill public expectations that all who need EMS can depend upon the highest quality of care and transport to the most appropriate clinical setting. This is the first bill to seriously look at EMS issues since the 1960s, the act would improve access to essential and life-saving EMS services and better integrate EMS within the larger health care system. Regardless of the model of EMS care delivery – whether governmental, nonprofit, private or volunteer – all EMS providers fulfill an essential public function for all patients in need. This function is carried out to the best of their ability and in spite of limited resources. The Field EMS Bill puts patients first by promoting high quality and evidence-based care for all patients in need of emergency medical care.

     

    To view the full press release, visit the NAEMT web site at www.naemt.org. To view the latest information about the Field EMS Bill, visit here.

     

    As NAEMT President Don Lundy states “advocacy is a marathon not a sprint”, and we are surely moving closer and closer to the finish line because of your help. 


    The Professional Ambulance Association of Wisconsin signed on early to support the Field EMS Bill.
  • Tuesday, May 20, 2014 6:39 AM | PAAW Administrator (Administrator)
    The State of Wisconsin EMS Office is accepting proposals for the EMS Medical Director position until May 30th.  Proposals should be sent to the Wisconsin EMS Office.

    The State's current medical director, Dr. Charles Cady, has expressed interest to continue with these responsibilities and plans to submit a proposal.

    The current medial director contract expires June 30, 2014.
  • Tuesday, May 13, 2014 9:09 PM | PAAW Administrator (Administrator)
    At its May meeting, the Professional Ambulance Association of Wisconsin’s Board of Directors approved a modest change to the Wisconsin Stars of Life program, as well as advancing every other year an honoree to the American Ambulance Association’s national Stars of Life event held in Washington, D.C.


    Beginning in September 2015, PAAW will host the Wisconsin Stars of Life awards program every other year, allowing it to coordinate its bi-annual visit of honorees to the State Capitol.  Every person nominated is presented with Wisconsin Stars of Life recognition.  From the group of Wisconsin honorees, one individual will be advanced in the subsequent year as Wisconsin’s representative and presented national Stars honors, the first opportunity being March 2016 under the new timeline.


    According to PAAW President Patrick Ryan, “We’ve been extremely pleased to produce the Stars event that recognizes Wisconsin’s best Emergency Medical Technicians as nominated by their local ambulance service.  Stars of Life provides awareness to our profession and the dedicated service being provided by so many.  We’ve wanted to be part of the national Stars program for some time; now Wisconsin will be.”

     

    The American Ambulance Association, through generous financial support from its Foundation, will cover airfare and a majority of other costs for the Washington, D.C. event in March 2016 for the Star, Star’s guest and host (employer).  This beneficial arrangement will continue to be offered every other year with PAAW’s recommendation.

     

    Maria Bianchi, Executive Vice President for the American Ambulance Association stated, “We are extremely proud to work with PAAW and the fine job they are doing in recognizing the dedication of so many EMTs.  This is such a terrific program.  We are so honored to have Wisconsin included in the national Stars of Life event and awards ceremony.”

     

    The Wisconsin Stars dinner and awards program will continue to coordinate with the opening night of the Paramedic Systems of Wisconsin conference in Green Bay.  So timing lines up, there will not be a Wisconsin Stars program held in September 2014.


    PAAW has produced the Wisconsin Stars of Life program since 2006, and is modeled after the American Ambulance Association national Stars program.  Persons nominated by their employers all receive Wisconsin Stars of life honors and exhibit these suggested EMS workplace criteria:


    • Employee of the year
    • On-duty or off-duty service above the call of duty
    • Setting significant records
    • Significant community contributions outside of EMS
  • Monday, May 05, 2014 8:16 PM | PAAW Administrator (Administrator)

    The WI Office of Rural Health will once again offer funding in 2014-15 for community health projects through the Rural Community Grant Program.  Guidelines are available at their website (http://www.worh.org/grants/wi-orh ).  Any rural healthcare coalition that includes a rural hospital with fewer than 50 staffed beds is eligible to apply.

     

    Funding is offered for both planning and implementation projects.  Beginning this year, projects must address an issue identified as a priority in the partner hospital(s)’ Community Health Needs Assessment. 

     

    Proposals are due no later than July 14; late proposals will not be accepted. 


    The WI Office of Rural Health will host a webinar/conference call on May 14 at 10:00 to review the guidelines and answer any questions. 


    For more information, contact Kevin Jacobson at kmjacobson2@wisc.edu.

  • Monday, April 28, 2014 8:03 PM | PAAW Administrator (Administrator)
    In response to the ongoing shortage of 0.9% sodium chloride injection (normal saline), Baxter Healthcare Corp. of Deerfield, Ill., will temporarily distribute normal saline in the United States from its Spain manufacturing facility. FDA is temporarily exercising its discretion regarding the distribution of Baxter’s saline product from Spain and Fresenius Kabi’s saline product from Norway as needed to address this critical shortage, which poses a serious threat to patients.

     

    FDA inspected Baxter’s Spain facility where its normal saline product is made to ensure the facility meets FDA standards. FDA asks that health care professionals contact Baxter directly to obtain the product.

     

    In addition to these sources of normal saline, U.S.-based manufacturers – Baxter Healthcare Corp., B.Braun Medical Inc., and Hospira Inc., – are currently producing and releasing normal saline. Baxter’s saline product from Spain will be distributed temporarily in addition to Baxter’s FDA-approved version that is currently manufactured and distributed in the United States.

     

    While the shipments described above will help reduce current disruptions, they will not resolve the current shortage of 0.9% sodium chloride injection.


    Preventing drug shortages is a top priority for the FDA, and we are doing everything within our authority to improve access and alleviate this shortage.

     

    The Professional Ambulance Association continues to report and share information as it becomes available.  To review Bound Tree Medical's weekly pharmaceutical backorder report, click here.
  • Friday, April 25, 2014 10:20 PM | PAAW Administrator (Administrator)
    The following was emailed on the afternoon of April 25 by the State of Wisconsin EMS Office to EMS Stakeholders:

    Brian Litza is no longer with the Wisconsin EMS Office. He has resigned effective 2014-04-24.


    Jennifer Ullsvik will be taking his responsibilities on an interim basis. All communication that would normally go to Brian should be directed to Jenny. She will work with the EMS Office staff to continue to move EMS in Wisconsin forward. Her contact information is:


    Jennifer Ullsvik, MS JD, Section Chief

    Emergency Health Care and Preparedness

    Division of Public Health

    1 W. Wilson Street, Room 1150

    Madison, WI 53701

    Phone: 608.267.7178

    jennifer.ullsvik@wi.gov


     The day to day operations of the EMS Office will not change. We remain committed to the positive customer service and professionalism that the office has encouraged.


    On a personal and professional level, the Professional Ambulance Association of Wisconsin wishes to extend its appreciation to Brian Litza for his leadership as State EMS Chief and Coordinator these past years. Both are demanding positions.

    Since 2002, we have seen Jon Morgan, Nan Turner, Dan Williams and Brian Litza lead and later resign the State EMS Chief position.  During this same time we have also seen the EMS Office be downgraded  from a Bureau, to a Section, then to its current status as a Unit.

    The Wisconsin EMS system includes over 17,000 licensed individuals operating as Paramedics, EMTs and Emergency Medical First Responders.  In addition, there is over 750 licensed ambulance services and first responder groups, and 1,200 licensed ambulances.
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