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CAFMA achieves Premier EMS Agency status

A helicopter was used at the scene of a head-on crash June 22, 2019, on Highway 89, north of Paulden. Central Arizona Fire and Medical Authority (CAFMA) has been awarded the Premier Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Agency status by the Arizona Department of Health Services. (CAFMA/Courtesy)

A helicopter was used at the scene of a head-on crash June 22, 2019, on Highway 89, north of Paulden. Central Arizona Fire and Medical Authority (CAFMA) has been awarded the Premier Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Agency status by the Arizona Department of Health Services. (CAFMA/Courtesy)

Central Arizona Fire and Medical Authority (CAFMA) has been awarded the Premier Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Agency status by the Arizona Department of Health Services.

This is a commitment by CAFMA to collect and use data to continuously improve patient care to the communities it serves. 

The Premier EMS Agency Program (PEAP) was established in 2009 as an EMS patient care performance improvement initiative. It’s essentially a form of accreditation to distinguish between EMS agencies that are striving to improve their operations through regular quality assurance evaluations and those that are not.

As of 2018, the standards were updated so that the recognition is only given to agencies that do the following:

• Maintain an electronic patient care report system that submits all incidents/patient contacts to the Arizona Pre-hospital Information and EMS Registry System consistent with current data submission guidelines.

• Commit to having a quality assurance team that reviews 100% of incidents/patient contacts associated with the following time-sensitive emergencies: Suspected opioid overdose; out-of-hospital cardiac arrest; serious heart attack; stroke; major trauma; and pediatric resuscitation.

• Commit to using data for optimizing patient care, including a process/system using electronic patient care report data to develop training, education and policies that enhance patient care.

• Annually update the Bureau Automated Online Services portal with an accurate list of agency-affiliated emergency medical care technicians, medical directors, EMS coordinators and other associated personnel.

• Ambulance providers only: Having a policy in compliance with the Safe Transport of Children by EMS interim guidance.

The only other EMS agency in the Prescott area to have PEAP status is Life Line Ambulance.

The Prescott Fire Department is currently working toward earning the recognition, Prescott Fire Marshall Don Devendorf said.

“We began collecting and sorting data over a year ago,” Devendorf said. “What we don’t have is the empowered quality assurance panel in place to review all of our patient contacts and make recommendations. Once we have that in place, we will be applying for PEAP status.”

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