Editor's Note: The Safety Day, which was to be held on May 21 at Target in Martinsburg has been canceled.

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — The American College of Emergency Physicians is celebrating the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Week May 15-21 with events in communities across the nation organized around the theme, "EMS STRONG Called to Care."

WVU Medicine University Healthcare and HealthNet Aeromedical Services will honor local EMS providers during this national celebration. Berkeley Medical Center will host a cookout for EMS personnel, while Jefferson Medical Center plans to present them with a gift.

“The Emergency Department staffs at both hospitals recognize the value and the accomplishments of our EMS providers,” Donnie Grubb, trauma coordinator for Berkeley Medical Center, said. “EMS workers provide a vital, invaluable public service that saves lives every day."

EMS personnel include paramedics, emergency medical technicians, first responders, fire fighters, and police, some paid, some volunteer. These men and women are ready to provide lifesaving care to those in need 24/7.

“Regardless of how we celebrate, EMS Week is the perfect time to recognize all in EMS for the integral role they play in the healthcare system and in our communities," Denise Carter, R.N., emergency department nurse manager at Jefferson Medical Center, said.                                    

Berkeley Medical Center trauma services and HealthNet are partnering with the Berkeley County Emergency Ambulance Authority to host a Safety Day from 2 p.m. until 6 p.m. on May 21 at Target in Martinsburg. A HealthNet helicopter will be on display as well as emergency equipment from Berkeley County and the West Virginia State Police. The staff of the ambulance authority, Berkeley Medical Center, and representatives from the Governors Highway Safety Program will be conducting car seat checks.

“Behavioral health services at Berkeley Medical Center will be offering screenings and information on drug abuse, while our OB department will be providing infant safe sleep information,” Grubb said.  

“A huge thanks to Captain Michael Barrett and Paramedic Courtney Rightnour for spearheading the event, which will include food, T-shirts, games, prizes, and more. We encourage folks to come out to visit with local law enforcement, EMS, aeromedical, and fire personnel on Safety Day.”

In 1973, President Gerald Ford authorized EMS Week to celebrate EMS, its practitioners, and the important work they do responding to medical emergencies.

For more information on National EMS Week, visit the website at www.emsweek.org.

For more information: Teresa E. McCabe, University Healthcare Vice President of Marketing and Development, 304-264-1223