“We owe our volunteers a debt of gratitude that goes beyond the call”
The following is a message from OEMSCA Executive Board members and Seneca County Emergency Services Director Ken Majors
National EMS 2019 slogan is EMS Strong: Beyond the Call.
This brings to mind all the things that EMS professionals do in the background of the actual EMS runs and transporting patients.
In Seneca County, Ohio, the bulk of our EMS providers are volunteers. We have close to 100 EMS volunteers that keep our 6 ambulances ready to go in all respects all across our county. Most of these volunteers also work full-time jobs in a multitude of different careers. Seneca County EMS is where they all come together for a common purpose. They care about their community and the people who live in it.
Our volunteers are some of the most dedicated people that I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with. We have an abundance of firefighters, nurses, teachers, educators, factory workers, farmers, electricians, masons, mechanics, and people from all walks of rural life that come together to intervene in a positive way when someone is having the worst day of their lives, or when they just need a little help in a bad moment.
We have college students, grandmothers, grandfathers, retirees, and young professionals looking to get a start in a medical career. Some of our personnel are EMT-Basic and others are Advanced EMTs and Paramedics. The commitment to ALS certification is difficult for a volunteer, but they embrace the challenge and keep up the required work to maintain their certifications. Some of our volunteers are here for only a few years, and they move on to a career in medicine or other calling. Some are here for decades and continue to provide safe, reliable, steadfast, and loyal medical care to their patients and community members.
We have many career volunteers that are medical professionals in other areas of medicine. We have several emergency department nurses, and other RN’s that maintain their EMS certifications to work in the field. We also have a bunch of career firefighter/paramedics, LPNs, and other medical personnel that selflessly give of their time and energy to ensure our squads are manned 24/7.
As leaders in EMS, we recognize the value of experience and the need to provide mentorship to our young up and coming EMS professionals. We strive to develop professional, hardworking and reliable personnel to continue the EMS mission into the future. The future will continue to include the volunteer workforce in EMS and Fire in rural areas of Ohio for many years to come.
We continue to grow beyond the call of EMS. One day we may all be paid professional EMS providers. When we do, we will know that the call we answered to give of ourselves to help our fellow man was answered for many years by people who never expected anything in return. We owe our volunteers a debt of gratitude that goes beyond the call.