Emergency Medical Services Week
Proclaimed in Illinois – May 20-26, 2012
Grand Ridge Volunteer Fire Department receives
Emergency Medical Service Hero Award
SPRINGFIELD – To recognize the heroic efforts of emergency responders, Governor Pat Quinn proclaimed May 20 – 26, 2012 as Emergency Medical Services Week in Illinois. As part of that recognition, Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) Director Dr. LaMar Hasbrouck today announced Grand Ridge Volunteer Fire Department in LaSalle County as the recipient of the Department’s 25th Annual Emergency Medical Services Award.
“The men and women being honored during Emergency Medical Services Week are true heroes who have acted selflessly to help people in need under distressing circumstances,” said Dr. Hasbrouck. “Thousands of emergency workers in Illinois put their lives on the line everyday, while others are Illinois residents who volunteer and have acted with courage to help fellow citizens avoid serious injury or even death. This week, the Illinois Department of Public Health honors these heroes and would like to say thank you for their courage, time and dedication.”
The director congratulates the Grand Ridge Volunteer Fire Department on receiving the Emergency Medical Service Hero Award. The award recognizes Grand Ridge Volunteer Fire Department for acting swiftly and selflessly by offering assistance and compassion to people faced with life-threatening situations. The fire department is staffed completely by volunteers.
During the 2011 blizzard that hit Illinois, Grand Ridge Volunteer Fire Department volunteers not only answered many calls for service during the blizzard, but also put together a rescue team of fire and emergency medical services (EMS) personnel who went out on snowmobiles, snow plows and trucks to assist citizens and rescue them from the blizzard.
“The Grand Ridge Volunteer Fire Department opened its fire house to more than 25 people needing a place to stay for the night. The rescued were given cots to sleep on for the night and in the morning were treated to breakfast,” said Grand Ridge Volunteer Fire Department Chief Michael Jaegle. “The outstanding team work shown during the blizzard and throughout their many volunteer service hours over the years have attributed to helping and saving many lives.”
Every year, firefighters, police officers, paramedics and others throughout the state send their nominations to the Illinois Department of Public Health for the annual Emergency Medical Service Hero Award. The nominations received are just a few of the many heroic acts people dedicated to saving lives do on a regular basis. Members of EMS teams spend thousands of hours in specialized training and continuing education to enhance their lifesaving skills. Approximately two-thirds of all EMS providers are volunteers.
In Illinois, there are 66 EMS resource hospitals, 65 trauma centers, 18,953 first responders, 37,277 emergency medical technicians (EMTs - 22,398 basic EMTs, 923 intermediate EMTs, 13,956 paramedic EMTs), 4,611 emergency communications registered nurses, 2,747 trauma nurse specialists, 323 pre-hospital registered nurses and 3,948 emergency medical dispatchers providing 24-hour service to the people of Illinois.
Illinois’ emergency medical services system also strives to integrate pediatric emergency care needs across a wide spectrum; recognizing that children have unique physiological responses to illness and injury.
To honor those who work in pediatric emergency care, the governor has proclaimed May 23, 2012 as Emergency Medical Services for Children Day in Illinois.