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Boston EMS Captain Delivers Training to Italy

BOSTON, MA - Boston EMS Training Captain Kent Scarna has just returned from a week in Florence, Italy where he helped a collaboration of Italian doctors, Harvard physicians and other colleagues in EMS to teach 50 rescuers there. Captain Scarna, using his personal time, was invited to teach and share his experience by the Tuscan Emergency Medical Service Initiative (TEMSI) and the Harvard Medical Faculty Physicians (HMFP). Members of the Initiative have previously observed Boston EMS training courses and were both impressed and intrigued with the teaching style. Captain Scarna has been with Boston EMS for 26 years; he currently is a Training Supervisor at the Boston EMS Academy and the Community EMT course.

This was a unique opportunity to share the techniques and process of how we teach EMS in Boston, Boston EMS Chief Jim Hooley said. We are honored that one of our staff was asked to help with the collaboration in Italy. Captain Scarna is an excellent teacher with years of experience working with both EMS professionals and the public. This is a testament to the quality of training provided to our personnel here in Boston.

The TEMSI is looking to model Boston EMS methods of training and service delivery. They are hoping to transition from a dependence on physicians for advanced field-based clinical care, to having more skilled technicians manage pre-hospital care.

Captain Scarna traveled with another paramedic out of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and gave lectures on assessment and oversaw practical exercises. The Italian training system is lecture style with oral exams. At Boston EMS, the training program uses a more didactic approach, where lectures are spread out with practical exercises in small groups. Testing includes both written and practical exams. This kind of approach was new to them, Scarna added.

Boston EMS is the City of Bostons premier emergency medical services provider and the largest municipal EMS service in New England. As a nationally recognized leader and innovator in the field of pre-hospital emergency medicine, the department leverages the latest advances in both medicine and technology to bring cutting edge care to the streets of Boston. In 2011, Boston EMS team of EMTs and Paramedics responded to nearly 108,000 calls for help and transported nearly 80,000 patients to area hospitals, making the department one of the busiest services in the country. The men and women of Boston EMS work tirelessly 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to deliver state-of-the-art pre-hospital emergency medical care to the people of Boston.


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