Ascension Public Schools hosts EMS Day

Greg Fischer Editor-in-chief

Dutchtown High School hosted an event on Wednesday, October 10 for students enrolled in the Emergency Medical Responder (EMR) program.

Representatives from Acadian Ambulance, the Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office, the State Fire Marshal, Baton Rouge EMS, the Prairieville Fire Department, and the Louisiana National Guard were giving students demonstrations and hands-on training opportunities.

Over 200 students from St. Amant, Dutchtown, East Ascension and Donaldsonville high schools are enrolled in the EMR program and were present at the event.

"Ascension Parish has 209 students in the EMR program," Ronald Harper, the program organizer said. "We have two EMS days, one in the fall and one in the spring. This one is large agency, touch, feel, and move. In the spring it will be more case report, skill practice--more like lets wrap this up and polish our skills."

The EMR program is a credentialing program for upperclassmen and women that gives students the opportunity to walk away with a license as an emergency medical responder.

"People like firemen, policemen, lifeguards, athletic trainers, industrial workers all usually get this credential to work in concert with their regular job," Harper said.

But Harper is giving students the opportunity to work one step further. Students in the EMR program may prepare themselves to go to work in an ambulance, as a tech in an emergency room or towards greater levels of the medical field.

"This is about year 10 for this day," Harper said. "Me personally, this is year seventeen in Dutchtown. We started off with just me and Prairieville EMS. We said hey, let's do something cool."

They began to invite all the representatives that currently participate in the EMS Day.

"It's not really a career day, but it shows them what each [group] does as first responders," a member of Baton Rouge EMS said. "They're learning some of the very basic stuff that paramedics learn."