|Description:||Here we see three emergency medical service (EMS) workers who’d arrived in an ambulance to a scenario involving a man who’d collapsed, and was now lying prone on a mobile gurney, about to be placed aboard the ambulance to be transported to the nearest medical facility.|
EMS workers are primary providers of pre-hospital emergency medical care and integral components of disaster response. EMS workers include first responders, emergency medical technicians (EMT), paramedics and others. The potentially hazardous duties of EMS workers include lifting patients and equipment, treating patients with infectious illnesses, handling hazardous chemical and body substances, and participating in the emergency transport of patients in ground and air vehicles. These duties create an inherent risk for EMS worker occupational injuries and illnesses; and research has shown that they have high rates of fatal injuries and nonfatal injuries and illnesses.