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Governor Honors Maine Emergency Medical Service Providers

May 20, 2010

AUGUSTA – Governor John E. Baldacci today joined Maine Emergency Medical Services (EMS) providers and other health and community representatives to recognize the outstanding achievements of emergency medical service personnel. The 23rd annual Maine EMS ceremony focused on the partnerships that are improving quality care statewide and the day-to-day contributions of first responders. This year’s ceremony focused on efforts to improve cardiovascular health outcomes and the HeartSafe Communities program.

“Maine EMS and other providers throughout the State are helping to build systems of care that improve the health and safety of Maine people,” said Governor Baldacci. “The coordination of providers through the Maine CDC Cardiovascular Health Program has led to better survival rates associated with heart attack and stroke. Maine EMS providers as first responders are on the front lines in implementing health system improvements.”

Maine Department of Public Safety and the Maine CDC Cardiovascular Health Program have collaborated with EMS and other statewide partners to increase public awareness of heart attack and stroke symptoms.

The HeartSafe Community Program promotes early access to pre-hospital treatment to speed diagnosis and treatment. This year, 14 new communities have been designated for the HeartSafe program, for a total of 51 statewide, covering more than 789,000 Maine residents.

The Governor also recognized the commitment of Maine EMS providers in addressing needs during last year’s H1N1 preparation and response. More than 2,000 EMS providers became trained to administer vaccine for seasonal flu and for H1N1. Tens of thousands of Maine residents received flu vaccines from EMS providers in schools, armories and community centers. In part, because of their efforts, Maine was identified by the federal government as leading New England for vaccinating against H1N1 in the high risk populations of pregnant women and children.

Awards were presented to:

Governor’s Award
Steven E. Diaz, M.D., Fairfield, State EMS Medical Director.

Barbara W. Woodlee, Ed.D., Augusta, recently retired President of KVCC.

Lifetime Achievement Award Fred Parsons, Paramedic, Presque Isle.

Harland “Hardy” Taylor, Oakland, Deputy Fire Chief and longtime rescue provider.

Pat Tardiff, EMT, Lisbon.

Excellence in EMS James Wilmerding, Paramedic, Northeast Harbor.

EMS Merit Awards Tracey Erickson, Dispatch Supervisor, Bangor.

Peter Holtby, EMT, Acton.

For more information about Maine EMS, visit http://www.maine.gov/dps/ems/

More information on Maine HeartSafe Communities can be found at http://www.healthymainepartnerships.org/mcvhp/heartsafe.aspx

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