(April 16, 2009) -- The DeSales University Emergency Medical Service (EMS) was recognized for its initiative and performance in the skills competition at the 2009 National Collegiate EMS Foundation Conference, held in Washington, D.C. earlier this semester.
Officially formed in May 2008, members of the DeSales EMS received the New Group Initiative Award, which is presented to a new campus organization in the NCEMS Foundation that is attending the conference for the first time. The DeSales group also ranked first among organizations from Pennsylvania schools and eighth nationwide in the physio-control skills test, in which they competed in trauma, medical and team-building scenarios.
Nearly 90 schools were represented at the conference, with 30 schools competing, including Cornell University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Syracuse University and from the local area, Muhlenberg College.
Ryan Hay, of Bethlehem, Pa., a DeSales junior majoring in political science, serves as the EMS director of DeSales, and Mark Ubbens, a DeSales sophomore and physician assistant major from Brodheadsville, Pa., is captain.
“We are extremely proud of our performance and our rankings in Pennsylvania and nationwide, considering we are a ‘new group” in the NCEMS Foundation and had never been through that particular skills competition before,” said Hay.
In fall 2007, Hay and Ubbens approached DeSales Police Chief Vincent Berkes about starting a student EMS. In May 2008, under the guidance of Chief Berkes and the support of Rev. Bernard O’Connor, president of DeSales, the student-run EMS squad was formed.
According to Hay, being recognized for their stellar performance is gratifying, but what matters most is the quality of patient care the DeSales EMS squad gives to patients on calls throughout the year.
“We feel Medical Director Dr. William Zajdel deserves some of the recognition because he has been instrumental in helping us achieve and maintain quality patient care,” said Hay. “He has been persistent in ensuring that we provide the best care possible on every call.”
Since its founding, the DeSales EMS has managed to earn the respect and trust of fellow EMS organizations, as well as members of the college community, for it its dedication to service and care in a relatively short period of time.
Nine DeSales EMS members participated in the recent national conference, where they took part in training sessions on campus-related EMS issues and attended lectures given by prominent speakers. Four DeSales EMS members, James Kish, Mark Ubbens, Ryan Hay, and Megan Hinkle, competed in the physio-control skills.
The following DeSales EMS members were also in attendance: Tim Donaghy, Chris Peterson, Antonella Dimatteo, Amelia Kalucki and Dana Moore. In addition, Ricky Malo and Chris Wall are also active members of DeSales EMS.
As a Pennsylvania Department of Health certified Quick Response Service, DeSales EMS, is completely run by DeSales students, who are State Certified Emergency Medical Technicians-Basic (EMT-B’s). The students include 10 Emergency Medical Technicians, one First Responder, and one Paramedic / EMT-P, an advanced level of an EMT-B.
The DeSales EMS squad is a member of the National Collegiate EMS Foundation (NCEMSF), the organization that supports all college EMS agencies. Although other higher education institutions in the Lehigh Valley have college-based EMS agencies, only DeSales and Kutztown universities have EMS agencies that are completely integrated in PSAP, the DeSales EMS squad is directly dispatched by the Lehigh County 911 dispatchers.
For more information, please contact Ryan Hay, ’11, director of DeSales EMS, at 610-282-1100, ext. 1911, or at firstname.lastname@example.org
Press Release: DeSales EMS Receives National Honors | Posted on: 4/16/2009
For more info:
Tom McNamara, Executive Director of Communications
DeSales University | 2255 Station Avenue | Center Valley, PA 18034
610.282.1100 x1219 | Tom.McNamara@desales.edu