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Patrick Ryan, PAAW President
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Current News and Information from PAAW

May 25, 2016

EMS Live in Wisconsin Podcast
HIPAA Compliance:  What's changed?

During the EMS Live in Wisconsin podcast on Tuesday, May 24,
our guest was Jeff Grady, Senior Director with Three Pillars Security Solutions in Madison.

>> Click to listen to this podcast.

HIPAA compliance has moved well past simply handing the patient a HIPAA brochure explaining their rights and getting a signature.  HIPAA stands for Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act.

Conducting a periodic HIPAA Security Risk Analysis is definitely a required mandate of HIPAA compliance for ambulance services as the organization and its employees and volunteers come in contact with ePHI (electronic patient health information).

The developing best practice is to complete a Security Risk Analysis on an annual basis (or after any significant change in your technology environment) due to some relatively recent pronouncements that apply to those organizations who need to comply with ‘meaningful use’ reporting requirements.

Some of the questions discussed, include:

  1. HIPAA has been around for quite some time now – what’s changed and why is there a renewed sense of urgency in making sure you’re compliant?
  2. What are some basic differences between meeting compliance with the HIPAA Security Rule as compared to the Privacy Rule of HIPAA?
  3. What is ‘willful neglect’ and why is it critical to avoid the potential of being found in ‘willful neglect’ under HIPAA?
  4. If your Electronic Health Record (EHR) vendor states that they meet HIPAA compliance – does that meet your obligation under HIPAA?
  5. What would be the key steps to make sure that you’re meeting “today’s” HIPAA compliance standards?
Co-hosts include Chris Anderson, Joe Covelli, Patrick Ryan, Dan Williams.  >> Click for more information.
May 23, 2016

Statewide Survey Announced by WI EMS Office

Information collected will be used to identify EMS agency needs and target support and funding.

On May 20, State of Wisconsin EMS Director James Newlun announced the Wisconsin Office of Rural Health and the Wisconsin EMS Section were collaborating to perform a sweeping “snapshot” of EMS in Wisconsin by conducting a statewide survey.

The survey was developed by a national group of EMS providers and partners to assess 18 attributes of a successful ambulance service.  The data from the survey will be used by the Wisconsin Office of Rural Health and the Wisconsin EMS Section to obtain baseline information to better target support and funding.

In his email to EMS professionals Newlun wrote, "We will be transparent with survey results.  We will report state averages, regional numbers, service type results, etc., which will allow your (ambulance) service to benchmark statewide and regional results against similar service types".  The assessment will provide data to help answer some questions that would not be possible with anonymous data.

Every patient transporting EMS/EMT/First Responder provider is encouraged to complete the survey, not just the Service Director. The survey will take about 15 minutes to complete.

>> Click to start the survey.

May 23, 2016

EMS Grant Writing 101 Virtual Conference in June

The National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health is offering a 3-part “EMS Grant Writing 101 Virtual Conference” in mid to late June.  Rural EMS agencies and other interested partners will learn how to write and submit a complete grant proposal, understand rural relevant data important to EMS and identify funding opportunities.

>> Click for more information and how to register.

EMS Grant Writing 101 Virtual Conference

June 15, 22 & 29, All classes 2:00 to 3:00 central time

Session 1: June 15 - Getting Started: Understanding Need, Collecting Data and Developing Community Support

Session 2: June 22 - Building Your Proposal: Telling Your Story

Session 3: June 29 - Connecting with Funders to Submit a Successful Proposal

May 21, 2016

Adams County ambulance service shut down during state investigation

An Adams County ambulance service has been shut down, leading the county to scramble to cover 911 services.

The State Department of Health Services confirmed there is an investigation into Adams County Emergency Services, a private ambulance company that contracts with eight municipalities in central Adams county for 911 service.

A DHS spokeswoman said the investigation involves several agencies, including the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and local law enforcement. The company was directed to cease operation and not to respond to calls.

>> Click to read more.

May 20, 2016

Call for Comments of Performance Measures for Cardiac Arrest and Stemi

EMS Compass, a national initiative dedicated to creating data and analytic measures for EMS, has released a new set of performance measures for public comment in the areas of cardiac arrest and STEMI.  All members of the EMS community are encouraged to view the measures and provide comments. 
The public comment period for these measures is open through June 3, 2016.

>> Click to provide comment. 

EMS agencies at the local, regional and state levels are encouraged to evaluate these measures immediately and to provide feedback on how important these measures will be for improving patient care and outcomes. Specific questions about the measures should be sent to EMS Compass Project Manager Nick Nudell at nick@nasemso.org.

May 13, 2016

National EMS Memorial Bike Ride Routes Through WI

The 2016 Midwest Route of the National EMS Memorial Bike Ride beginning in Chicago, IL is a special bicycling event to honor and celebrate the lives of EMS providers who were dedicated to EMS or have died while performing their duties. Funds raised during this ride benefit the families of fallen EMS practitioners through the Fallen Angel Fund.

The ride starts in Chicago, IL June 26 and ends June 30 with a Memorial Service at 3:30p at Woodbury Public Safety, 2100 Radio Drive in Woodbury, MN. Routes along the way include Milwaukee, Green Bay and La Crosse, June 26 to 29. This cycling event raises awareness of fallen Emergency Medical Services (EMS) personnel. The week concludes with a memorial service to which all participants, local EMS personnel, and friends and families of the honorees participate. Shuttling of riders and bikes will be done.

>> Click for event information and details.

May 11, 2016

National Stars of Life, Washington D.C.

Chief Deonne Eske Presented with National Star of Life Award

Ashippun Fire and EMS Chief Deonne Eske was presented National Stars of Life honors and recognition at an event in Washington D.C., April 11-13, which was produced by the American Ambulance Association.  At the event, the AAA recognized 103 Stars of Life honorees from 29 states and 90 communities.  Eske was presented her award by AAA President Mike Hall.

According to Eske, “What an amazing, awesome experience at the National Stars of Life awards.  It was a highlight of my EMS and fire career”.

Eske, an EMT-Basic, has been involved in fire and EMS for 33 years.   She has been a volunteer EMT/firefighter, lieutenant, captain and is currently chief. 

Eske was named Wisconsin’s representative to attend the National Stars of Life awards by the Professional Ambulance Association of Wisconsin at its state event this past September.  She advanced from a group of 26 Wisconsin Stars of Life honorees, individuals nominated by their local ambulance service for outstanding achievements or work performance.

The next Wisconsin Stars of Life event will be produced in September 2017 by the Professional Ambulance Association of Wisconsin.  The nomination period will be open from July to August 2017.  Watch the Association’s website for updates.

>> Click for the 2015 Wisconsin Stars of Life dedicated webpage.

May 9, 2016

Madison firefighters issued body armor

At the end of April, Madison firefighters began having bullet-resistant vests assigned to them for added protection on any calls posing a higher risk for gunfire.

The new gear -- totaling 90 vests, weighing 20 pounds a piece and lined with heavy ceramic plates to stop rounds from handguns to high-powered rifles -- will be required for all Madison Fire Department personnel responding with police to provide medical help where bullets are or might be flying.

>> Click to read more.

May 3, 2016

New director named to Wisconsin Office of Preparedness and Emergency Healthcare

The Division of Public Health announced that Bill Oemichen joined the division on May 2 to serve as Director of the Office of Preparedness and Emergency Healthcare.  The announcement was made by Wisconsin EMS Section Director James Newlun.

Oemichen has a broad background in public health, health care and consumer protection. His experience includes leading Minnesota's food safety program where he oversaw major food safety investigations, and serving as a commissioned Officer of the U.S. Food & Drug Administration. Oemichen also served for five years as Administrator of the Wisconsin Trade and Consumer Protection Division at DATCP.

Oemichen also has extensive experience working with partners across sectors. During his 14 years as President & CEO of Cooperative Network, Oemichen worked closely with the Rural Wisconsin Health Cooperative, HealthPartners HMO, Group Health Cooperative of South Central Wisconsin (GHC-SCW), Group Health Cooperative of Eau Claire and Wisconsin Rx.

April 26, 2016

The Anti-Kickback Statute and Its Application to Private and Municipal EMS Providers

Co-authored by Thomas Shorter and Wendy Arends, attorneys with Godfrey & Kahn, Madison

As municipal departments become more involved in providing emergency medical services and inter-facility transports, discounts or provision of free services or items that result in charges below cost may trigger the federal Anti-Kickback Statute (“Anti-Kickback Statute”).  Because of the complexity of the Anti-Kickback Statute, EMS providers—whether privately owned or municipal—are encouraged to carefully evaluate proposed transactions and arrangements for fraud and abuse compliance.

The Anti-Kickback Statute

The Anti-Kickback Statute was enacted in 1972 to protect patients and federal health care programs from fraud and abuse.   >> Click to read more http://paaw.us/news/3986097

The April 26,
2016 EMS Live in Wisconsin podcast interviewed attorney Wendy Arends about the Anti-Kickback Statute as it relates to private and municipal ambulance services.  >> Click to listen now.

April 18, 2016

Wisconsin ambulance Narcan rebate in the media

More than 800 Wisconsinites died of prescription narcotic painkiller and heroin overdoses in 2013, the most recent year for which there is data available, and drug overdose is now the leading cause of injury death in the United States.

The Professional Ambulance Association of Wisconsin and Wisconsin Attorney General Brad Schimel teamed up to announce details of a new rebate program for Naloxone, the opiate antidote, that will be administered by the Wisconsin Department of Justice for qualifying organizations.  Wisconsin ambulance services are eligible to apply for the rebate. 
>> Click for more information.

April 12, 2016

EMS Live in Wisconsin Podcast
Narcan rebate announced for Wisconsin ambulance services; Stemi drug therapy

>> Click to listen now!

This EMS Live in Wisconsin podcast was recorded on Tuesday, April 12.

The program began with an announcement regarding a $6.00 rebate negotiated between Wisconsin Attorney General Brad Schimel and Naloxone (Narcan) manufacturer Amphastar.  Wisconsin ambulance services are eligible, but must file their rebate within 60 days of each quarter's end.  The Agreement expires February 1, 2017.  For more on the rebate program, go to >> http://paaw.us/Amphastar-narcan-rebate.

The second part of the program, starting at 6:00 minutes, included a discussion on stemi drug therapy with guests Dr. Michael Rosenberg, Medical Director-Cardiovascular Services, Holy Family Memorial Hospital, Manitowoc, Valders Ambulance Director Jay Steuer, and Baraboo Area Ambulance Chief Dana Secular.  Holy Family Memorial Hospital was recently named one of 50 top hospitals in the nation regarding its stemi EMS system.

Upcoming Events

Current PAAW Priorities
Community Paramedicine / Mobile Integrated Healthcare Legislation
MABAS and WI Liability Protection Statute 893.80

Next EMS Live Podcast

Tuesday, June 14

starting at 9:00 a.m. central time


Community Paramedicine Data

Captain Michael Wright
Milwaukee Fire Department

Dial in number to listen to the live show or speak with the co-hosts and guests:  


Or listen on any internet connected device - even email in a question.

Treating CHF patients with better results (Tyler Christifulli, Training Coordinator, Lifestar EMS, West Bend, WI)

Most recent EMS Live in Wisconsin Podcast - Listen Now!

Emergency calls or patient contacts to PAAW members last year

Over 285,000

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Crystal Wallin

Feature writer and La Crosse Paramedic

Recent blog posts by Crystal: Standby for Tones

Weekly IV Fluids and EMS Pharmaceutical Backorder Report

PAAW continues to monitor the ongoing EMS pharmaceutical drug and IV fluids backorder situation by posting weekly updates, courtesy of Bound Tree Medical.

Through a special arrangement with EMS World magazine, PAAW members and their employees or volunteers receive a free 12-month subscription, a $40 value. 

Stay on top of national EMS news, tips, a variety of topics and special reports - delivered right to your home or work address or e-mail account the beginning of every month!  >> Click to receive this benefit.

Monitor Police, Fire and EMS Radio Traffic Around the U.S.!

Browse over 2,000 police, fire and EMS scanner monitoring stations around the U.S. with a simple click of your computer mouse.  It's sure to make any scanner junkie go wild!

>> Click here to find out more about selecting your own monitoring station or click the scanner below to open the audio player for Milwaukee County Fire radio traffic.

Milwaukee County Fire
(click scanner below to activate feed)

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