EMS for Children (EMSC) Program
The Illinois EMS for Children program was formally established in 1994 by the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), within the Division of EMS & Highway Safety, and is aimed at improving pediatric emergency care and disaster preparedness within our state. Illinois EMSC works to ensure compliance with Federal Performance Measures defined by the Federal EMSC Program, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). These measures focus on improving pediatric prehospital and emergency department capabilities as well as interfacility transfer processes.
IDPH provides grant funding to Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago to lend clinical and academic expertise/resources. Program guidance is provided by the Illinois EMSC Advisory Board, which is comprised of representatives from professional health care, child advocate and community organizations. Several standing committees are also in place with clinical and subject matter experts who provide recommendations on regulatory proposals and resource development.
Key program initiatives are aimed at enhancing the PedsReadiness of prehospital agencies, emergency departments and pediatric critical care centers within Illinois. Currently over 100 hospitals in Illinois have received recognition by the Illinois Department of Public Health via the Pediatric Facility Recognition program, for having the essential resources and capabilities in place to meet the emergency and critical care needs of seriously ill and injured children.
Pediatric resources are available at the National EMSC Innovation and Improvement Center. In addition, several healthcare practitioner pediatric educational modules, as well as pediatric guidelines and resources have been developed in Illinois, and are aimed at assisting healthcare organizations in improving their pediatric readiness.