Territory spotlight: Guam

  • Published June 30, 2024

Breanna Sablan has been the EMSC Guam State Partnership program director since April 2019. Originally from Guam, she is well-equipped for understanding the unique regional and cultural needs of the island. Here is what she shared about her work and Guam’s EMSC program.

What it’s like to be an EMSC Program in a territory – why is it important and what are some of the unique benefits/challenges?

“It's very important to be part of the EMSC State Partnership Program, because it is crucial to train EMS personnel so that when a pediatric emergency happens, we are ready! There are many benefits to being a part of this program, but we face challenges as well. The regional location for Guam can be a challenge in itself – we have one EMS agency and two emergency departments serving more than 54,000 children. It's important to expand and improve our capacity to handle and reduce pediatric emergencies.”

Can you share some of what you’re working on related to pediatric readiness?

“We are currently working with our medical director to develop a pediatric readiness recognition program. Our initial focus will be on prehospital services. The medical director is very supportive and I am hopeful we will be able to implement a program soon and continue to discuss pediatric emergency strategies.”

We saw some great pictures from you during EMS Week and EMSC Day. Tell us about how you celebrated those events in your region?

“Absolutely. I love celebrating and recognizing EMS personnel around the island of Guam. They are important people and should be celebrated more often!

I planned EMS recognition activities with a committee I formed that consisted of EMDs, EMTs, AEMTs and paramedics. I also planned an event for EMSC Day, a proclamation, a parade of lights, and a health fair including hands-only CPR and Stop-the-Bleed education. It is very Important for us to target young children and adolescents to learn these important skills.The various EMS agencies amongst the government of Guam and federal fire agencies joined the parade of lights with ambulances and fire trucks showcasing 50 years of EMS.”

What do you have planned for your program in the upcoming year that you are excited about or want to share with us?

“This year we will have an EMS annual training, to include Northern Mariana Islands' EMTs, along with some wonderful presentations from renowned physicians throughout our region. We are also planning a disaster training that will coincide with a school active-shooter training. Additionally, we will be developing CPR outreach and conducting CPR courses for children as young as 9 years old. The more people we reach, the better!”

For fun: we know you are busy with work. But what are some things that you do for fun, like a hobby or to relax?

“Right now, I'm in a nursing program and am registered for an EMT course starting this fall. My goal is to be a nurse and EMT. I enjoy researching ways to improve emergency care for children. I also love spending time with my family; watching my 16-month-old daughter, Maddison Hope, grow; dancing; and traveling.”

Learn more about Guam EMSC here.