Key takeaways from survey of 8,000+ EMS agencies

  • Published November 30, 2022
EMS agencies

A total of 8,347 EMS agencies responded to this year’s EMS for Children Survey, which was sent to 15,309 EMS agencies across 58 states and territories. The survey was conducted between January and March of 2022 by the EMSC Data Center (EDC) working with EMSC State Partnership program managers. 

The goal of the survey is to improve understanding of EMS agencies’ capability to care for children by collecting data on two critical ways to ensure pediatric readiness: appointing a pediatric emergency care coordinator (PECC), or pediatric champion, and providing regular opportunities for skill-checking on pediatric equipment. 

These focus areas align with two EMSC program performance measures.

Key takeaways and data dissemination

Each year, the EDC creates a National EMSC Report for EMS Agencies with aggregate national data, which is shared with EMS agencies.

Key takeaways from the national report include:

  • The large majority of agencies (81%) receive fewer than eight pediatric calls a month.
  • Slightly more than one-third (35.8%) of EMS agencies report having a PECC, while 4.2% plan to add a PECC, and 16.9% expressed interest in having one. 43.1% of agencies did not have a PECC.
  • Slightly more than a quarter (26.2%) of EMS agencies report the recommended psychomotor skills-checking on pediatric equipment, with 20.3% reporting moderate training and 5.9% reporting extensive training. 54.1% of all agencies report having limited training, and 19.7% report no or very little training.

“We continue to see positive trends in the prehospital setting,” says Hilary Hewes, MD, Principal Investigator for the EDC. “The number of agencies meeting skills-checking standards increased by approximately 1.5% for all agencies surveyed. Interestingly, this year, the number of agencies reporting PECCs dropped by 0.1% from last year. However, when we compare only those agencies that responded in both of the last two survey years, we see there was an increase of 2.4% — indicating there is forward movement.”

Survey data are disseminated to EMSC State Partnership program managers through custom national and state-specific data reports and visualizations built by the EDC.

“The national report also serves to thank the EMS agencies that completed the survey,” says Andrea Genovesi, MA, EDC Operations Manager. “And it helps the EDC to validate email addresses for, and is the first step in promoting, the next year’s EMS for Children Survey.”

Gearing up for the 2023 survey

The 2023 EMS for Children Survey will launch in January 2023 and close at the end of March 2023. State Partnership program managers can expect to hear more about the survey in the coming months.

To learn more about the EMS for Children Survey, visit the EDC’s website. For resources on improving pediatric care in prehospital settings, visit the Prehospital Pediatric Readiness Project webpage.