In 1984, insightful emergency medical service leaders from a cross-section of the U.S. came together to form a new organization for the EMS physician responsible for medical care in the out-of-hospital setting. Their vision was to create a peer group organization which would serve as a resource and advocate for the EMS physicians and other EMS personnel. In the following months, a National Steering Committee and Advisory Board, comprised of well-known academic and community leaders in out-of-hospital care, established the groundwork for the National Association of EMS Physicians® (NAEMSP®).
Since its inception in 1984, the NAEMSP® membership has grown from a handful of dedicated founders to over 1,100 physicians, paramedics, nurses, administrators, educators, researchers and key EMS personnel. The membership continues to increase as the NAEMSP® represents the out-of-hospital emergency medical care community. As part of its ongoing commitment to improving out-of-hospital emergency medical care, the NAEMSP® promotes meetings, publications and products that connect, serve and educate its members. In addition, the Association acts as a resource and advocate of EMS related decisions in cooperation with organizations throughout the country and the community at large, including agencies of the Federal Government.
Since the birth of the NAEMSP®, EMS systems have continued to grow and develop. However, despite the best of intentions, many systems have developed enthusiastically without maintaining the perspective that EMS is the practice of medicine (by medical personnel) in the out-of-hospital setting. Since EMS physicians emanate from various disciplines (such as emergency medicine, family practice, pediatrics, surgery and cardiology) and non-physicians encompass an unlimited range of professions, it is the continuing role of the NAEMSP® to coordinate and focus advances in medical care, research and training in each of these fields as they relate to EMS.