BOX 4-6

EMS Physician Subspecialty Objectives

Short Term: Continue to work to define the specific knowledge and expertise required of physicians who specialize in EMS.

Intermediate Term: Enable the American Board of Emergency Medicine (ABEM) to sponsor an EMS subspecialty.

Long Term: Petition the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) to designate EMS as a physician subspecialty.


mends that the American Board of Emergency Medicine create a subspecialty certification in emergency medical services (4.4). The certification would be analogous to those available in toxicology, sports medicine, and pediatric emergency medicine. Creating this type of designation would acknowledge the unique challenges and complexities of the out-of-hospital environment. The certification would ensure that physicians providing medical direction would be trained specifically in prehospital EMS and prepared to meet the challenges likely to be encountered.


4.1: State governments should adopt a common scope of practice for emergency medical services personnel, with state licensing reciprocity.

4.2: States should require national accreditation of paramedic education programs.

4.3: States should accept national certification as a prerequisite for state licensure and local credentialing of emergency medical services providers.

4.4: The American Board of Emergency Medicine should create a subspecialty certification in emergency medical services.

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