National EMS week aims to celebrate emergency service workers

BECKLEY, WV (WOAY) – National EMS Week was recognized in 1974 by President Gerald Ford and is meant to recognize the important work emergency service workers do for communities.

Paul Seamann, the director of operations for Jan-Care Ambulance Services, says his EMS crews have been working diligently to serve their communities since the beginning of the pandemic. 

“We’re involved with everything from major disasters, we’ve even had crews that have been up to the New Jersey area. During this pandemic they’re working everyday and we couldn’t be prouder of what they do for the community,” Seamann said. 

EMS workers can include anyone from first responders and EMTs, to paramedics and anyone else who provides pre-hospital emergency care. And even before the pandemic, EMS workers have always been ready to help people in need. 

“EMS is out there at 3 in the morning in all kinds of weather. And whatever the current situation is, our crews have always been ready and standing by.”

According to Seamann, EMS workers have had to be especially careful with their PPE in recent months. The pandemic has been a strain on EMS workers due to how contagious the virus is and how many people they interact with on the daily. 

“A hospital has ways to control some of the things that happen with patients when they come in. We’re going into patients homes, we’re going into the nursing homes. We have to be doubly and triply effective with our PPE.”

Seamann also wants people to know that by doing some basic precautions like wearing masks, they can help EMS workers in major ways. 

“I just want people to recognize that if you see our people wearing masks, that is for your protection. That’s protecting you from us. And if everyone would please help us with that, we’re asking that patients wear masks and things like that during this particular time.” 

Jan-Care was founded in 1970 and has been in service for 50 years.