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Date Updated: Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Collaborators in Care: Westchester Medical Center Recognizes Emergency Medicine Service Personnel During National EMS Week ​

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VALHALLA, N.Y. (May 18, 2021) – During National EMS Week (May 16-22), Westchester Medical Center, the flagship of the Westchester Medical Center Health Network (WMCHealth), is recognizing emergency medical service personnel from the Hudson Valley and beyond for their life-changing and lifesaving efforts. 

“Emergency medical service personnel are the true, healthcare frontliners,’’ said Tina Cocuzza, MD, Director of Westchester Medical Center’s Emergency Medical and Interfacility Patient Transfer Services. “EMS specialists go into private homes, respond to outdoor accidents in inclement weather and make critical, life-and-death treatment decisions in the most challenging care environments.

“The care provided by EMS personnel is often the first step in a successful patient outcome. Westchester Medical Center is eager to share its appreciation for the work conducted by our EMS partners – many of whom are volunteers with full-time jobs - for their collaboration.’’

During EMS Week, Westchester Medical Center will debut a new communications area set aside for emergency service personnel and will host a variety of efforts throughout the week.  Similar recognition efforts will occur at other WMCHealth member hospitals.  

WMCHealth hospitals are home to the region’s only Level I adult (Westchester Medical Center) and pediatric (Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital) trauma centers and a Level II trauma center (MidHudson Regional Hospital). Cocuzza said EMS personnel and critical care nurses from more than 40 volunteer and professional agencies treat and transport 325-500 patients a month to Westchester Medical Center, a quarter of which are transferred from community hospitals around the region.

“Having to transfer patients later, rather than direct admission to a Level I trauma center, could delay life-saving treatment,’’ said Cocuzza. “This is why the triage skills of EMS personnel are critical in determining the best treatment options for each patient.”