National Association of EMS Physicians


Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Series
Click below for recordings
Building the Foundation to Discuss Race & Health Disparities in EMS

COVID-19 Town Hall Series

View recordings from our COVID-19 Town Hall series here. Topics include:
  • COVID-19 and Public Health Intersection in EMS 
  • Economic Impact of COVID-19 
  • Urban EMS Considerations in the COVID-19 Era
  • EMS Education Considerations in the COVID-19 Era
  • Air Ambulance Transport during COVID-19 (originally named HEMS Considerations in the COVID-19 Era)
  • Quality Improvement in EMS in the COVID-19 Era 
  • Rural and Tribal EMS Considerations in the COVID-19 Era
  • Mental Wellbeing in the COVID-19 Era 
  • Emerging Critical Care Concepts in the Management of COVID-19 
  • Chapter Insights Surrounding COVID-19 
  • EMS Legal Issues Regarding COVID-19
  • Protecting Your Providers: Seattle’s COVID-19 Experience 

EMS Physician Virtual Town Hall: COVID Vaccines - Your Questions Answered!


Click here to watch a recording of the session.

EMS practitioners have been serving as the “tip of the spear” in responding to and managing the COVID-19 pandemic. Paramedics and EMTs across the country have contracted COVID-19, and too many have succumbed to the virus. The launch of the vaccination program has included a great deal of information about the vaccines, not all of which has been accurate. Confusing or misleading information about COVID-19 vaccinations may cause some EMS practitioners to choose not to receive the vaccine.  
To help cut through the noise, NAEMT has assembled some of our nation’s most notable EMS physician leaders for a virtual town hall to answer your questions and concerns regarding the COVID vaccines. This will be a spirited discussion, led primarily by the questions YOU ask. Questions can be asked live, or submitted in advance to Matt Zavadsky

Moderator: Matt Zavadsky, MS-HSA, NREMT - Chief Strategic Integration Officer, Medstar Mobile Healthcare, Ft. Worth, TX; 2019-2020 President, NAEMT


  • Doug Kupas, MD, FAEMS, FACEP - EMS Medical Director, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania; NAEMSP Board Member; NASEMSO Medical Director’s Council
  • Kenneth A. Scheppke, MD, FAEMS - EMS Medical Director, State of Florida; Medical Director, Palm Beach County Fire Rescue
  • Veer D. Vithalani, MD, FACEP, FAEMS - System Medical Director, Office of the Medical Director, Metropolitan Area EMS Authority; Chief Medical Officer, MedStar Mobile Healthcare
  • Jon R. Krohmer, MD, FACEP, FAEMS - Director, Office of EMS, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration; Team Lead, HHS Healthcare Resiliency Working Group EMS/Prehospital Team

Prehospital Ketamine Use for the Combative Patient 

The webinar took place November 6, 2020. The national discussion on the use of ketamine for patients suffering from severe agitation is rapidly evolving. Panelists discussed ongoing challenges and controversies with the prehospital use of ketamine for sedation. They also discussed NAEMSP's new position statement on managing agitated or combative patients by emergency medical services.  Watch the webinar.

Key take-aways:
  • When training on management of combative or violent patients, EMS leaders should ensure our law enforcement colleagues also receive appropriate training to raise awareness that agitation or bizarre behavior may have underlying serious medical reasons that must be evaluated by EMS.
  • The overwhelming majority (> 99%) of patients given sedation are transported to a hospital, not a correctional facility.
  • While ketamine is shown to be a safe and effective medication, it still requires training for potential complications and diligent medical oversight.
  • While males were more likely than females to receive sedation, a national study found no evidence of racial disparity in EMS-administered sedation for patients in police custody; reviews at the individual agency level should be encouraged.
  • Among 1,878 records with available mortality data, there were only six deaths (0.3%) in which ketamine could not be excluded as a possible contributing factor.
  • Patient restraint should be viewed as a broad entity beyond the use of a single medication; the national position statement endorsed by multiple stakeholders includes education, training, QA, CQI, and extensive medical oversight by EMS Physicians as key components of an overall protocol.

Contact NAEMSP