CINCINNATI—The University of Cincinnati Emergency Medical Services (EMS) fellowship has received a full accreditation for three years from the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME), the organization responsible for accrediting post-MD medical training program within the United States.
This is the first year that the ACGME has accredited EMS fellowship programs. UC’s program is among the first 20 programs across the country to receive accreditation, which will be effective July 1, 2013.
The fellowship program trains physicians who have already completed an emergency medicine residency program. UC’s program partners with the Cincinnati Fire Department and many of the largest fire departments in the region, including Colerain Township, Blue Ash and Sharonville, to provide both education for fellows and medical direction for the fire departments.
"Just as Cincinnati Fire Department was the first professional fire department and the University of Cincinnati had the first residency program in emergency medicine, we are proud that our EMS fellowship is among the first accredited programs,” says fellowship director and UC assistant professor of emergency medicine Jason McMullan, MD. "We’re one of the newest fellowships in medicine. It’s very exciting.”
McMullan say that every EMS system in the country operates with physician oversight—mostly emergency medicine physicians, but historically, sometimes physicians from other specialties. He says there have been fellowship programs for decades, but none accredited or official. UC has had an informal EMS fellowship for over 15 years.
With the first class of officially accredited programs, the fellowship is now on equal footing with other medical subspecialties.
"As the profession of EMS medical direction has developed, so has the subspecialty of EMS,” says McMullan. "Just last year, EMS was granted true subspecialty status by the American Board of Emergency Medicine. There is recognition that there’s a truly specialized knowledge and skill set that physicians need to be the best possible provider of the medical oversight for these departments. Now we have one of the earliest accredited training programs to provide that specialized knowledge and expertise.”
Faculty and fellows within the UC’s Department of Emergency Medicine provide medical direction for 26 regional EMS departments, four local law enforcement agencies, three paramedic training programs and the regional Urban Search and Rescue team. In these roles, fellows work with the departments on quality improvement, continuing education programs, field observation, administrative meetings and medical director shadowing.
Fellows also train as part of the department’s Emergency Medicine Special Operations Institute, which provides medical assistance and operational support to local first responders and other specialized response teams during urban search and rescue missions, mass gathering/mass casualty medicine, hazardous materials medicine and dignitary protection and other events.
In addition, fellows receive training with UC Health Air Care & Mobile Care and receive exposure to wilderness medicine and toxicology from UC emergency medicine faculty members with expertise in these fields.
UC will have three fellows starting this July. For more information about applying, contact Vicki Conneighton at 513-558-8406.