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2024 AIMHI EMS Integration Award Winners Announced

13 Feb 2024 8:39 AM | AIMHI Admin (Administrator)

Washington, DC—Today the Academy of International Mobile Healthcare Integration (AIMHI) announced the winners of the 2024 AIMHI Excellence in Integration Awards, which will be celebrated at the American Ambulance Association Annual Conference & Trade Show in Nashville on April 24.  These prestigious honors celebrate and promote high-performance, high-value EMS, its partners, and leaders.

This year's winners are:

Excellence in EMS Integration
  • Ascension St. John Bed Delay Initiative
    Ascension St. John Medical Center's aggressive bed delay mitigation strategy, which significantly reduced EMS waiting times and improved unit hour production, earns it the AIMHI Excellence in EMS Integration Award. This initiative showcases the hospital's dedication to enhancing the efficiency of EMS services by ensuring the rapid transfer of care from EMS to hospital staff, thereby drastically reducing bed delays. Ascension St. John's proactive approach, including a goal for EMS transfer of care within 5 minutes, not only enhanced operational efficiency but also boosted EMS crew morale, fostering a stronger partnership between EMS and hospital staff. This achievement underscores Ascension St. John's leadership and innovation in healthcare, setting a new standard for hospital and EMS collaboration.
  • Honorable Mention: Niagara Consumption & Treatment Services (CTS) site 
    Niagara's Consumption & Treatment Services (CTS) site, a safe space for individuals struggling with substance use, received an honorable mention this year. This initiative, in partnership with Positive Living Niagara, combines supervised drug consumption with immediate medical intervention by EMS paramedics in case of overdose, alongside offering a range of support services. This holistic approach not only saves lives but also connects individuals to crucial health and social services, demonstrating a successful model of integrated healthcare that addresses both immediate and long-term needs of those with substance use disorders.
  • Honorable Mention: AmeriHealth Caritas Ambulance Value Based Program 
    AmeriHealth Caritas, a leader in healthcare solutions for low-income and chronically ill populations, has been recognized with an honorable mention for its innovative Ambulance Value-Based Program in partnership with Acadian Ambulance. This groundbreaking initiative focuses on enhancing clinical quality, performance, and patient outcomes through a value-based care agreement. This agreement incentivizes ambulance services to achieve shared savings linked to patient outcomes, particularly following treat-in-place encounters, and rewards efforts towards meeting quality measure benchmarks. Through this partnership, AmeriHealth Caritas and Acadian Ambulance have demonstrated a commitment to improving patient care and outcomes for Medicaid members in Louisiana, highlighting the power of collaboration in advancing healthcare.

Excellence in Public Information or Education

  • Mecklenburg EMS Agency's Response Configuration Community Outreach

    The Mecklenburg EMS Agency, also known as Medic, has been honored as the winner of the Excellence in Public Information or Education Award for its exemplary Response Configuration Community Outreach program. Launched on April 17, 2023, this initiative redefined Medic's approach to responding to calls, optimizing resource allocation, and setting new benchmarks for response times, particularly for non-emergent situations. To ensure the success of this transformative change, Medic formed a multi-agency project team, collaborating closely with local fire departments, police departments, and community organizations. This team embarked on an ambitious communication campaign, engaging in public feedback sessions across Mecklenburg County, leveraging local media, and generating significant social media engagement. The creation of dedicated landing pages for both the public and internal staff facilitated transparent communication and feedback, contributing to the project's success. Medic's comprehensive strategy not only secured broad stakeholder buy-in but also effectively managed public perception, ensuring a smooth transition to the new response configuration. This campaign underscores Medic's commitment to public education and its role as a leader in EMS service delivery, demonstrating the profound impact of effective communication and community engagement in healthcare.

Excellence in Value Demonstration or Research
  • Mecklenburg EMS Agency's Response Configuration
    The Mecklenburg EMS Agency (Medic) stands out as the recipient of the Excellence in Value Demonstration or Research Award, thanks to its pioneering Response Configuration program. This initiative, launched in April 2023, strategically enhanced Medic's response protocols to emergency calls, leading to significant operational improvements. Notably, within six months, comprehensive data analysis highlighted that the new configuration had no negative effects on patient outcomes, optimized resource allocation, and led to a substantial 70% reduction in the use of lights and sirens during responses. Additionally, it achieved a 78% decrease in Medic-involved traffic incidents, significantly enhancing safety for both the community and emergency responders. These impressive outcomes not only demonstrate Medic's innovative approach to EMS but also underscore its unwavering commitment to improving patient care, safety, and efficiency within the greater Charlotte area.
  • Honorable Mention: AAA/AIMHI EMS News Tracker (Rob Lawrence & Rodney Dyche)

    The American Ambulance Association/AIMHI EMS News Tracker, spearheaded by Rob Lawrence and Rodney Dyche, receives an honorable mention in the category of Excellence in Value Demonstration or Research. Since its inception in 2021, this invaluable resource has meticulously cataloged local and national news stories pertinent to the EMS community. By offering a filterable database complete with direct links to each news report, the News Tracker has become an essential tool for publications, presentations, and national webinars, showcasing the significant challenges and impacts facing EMS across the nation.

Advocacy in Integrated Healthcare Award
  • Rep Mike Carey (OH-15)

    Representative Mike Carey of Ohio’s 15th Congressional District is celebrated for his staunch advocacy on behalf of EMS, particularly in championing improved reimbursement and innovative patient care models. Since his tenure began in November 2021, Carey has leveraged his positions on influential committees to advocate for policies that support EMS providers and ensure they are fairly compensated for their critical services. His commitment to EMS advancement reflects his broader dedication to public service.

  • Senator Peter Welch (VT)
    Senator Peter Welch of Vermont is honored with the Leadership in Integrated Healthcare Award for his groundbreaking work on the Emergency Medical Services Reimbursement for On-Scene Care and Support Act (EMS ROCS). This legislation, a significant milestone for the integration of EMS into the healthcare system, proposes that the Medicare program reimburse EMS providers when they render care on-scene, even if the patient opts against transport to an emergency department. Welch's initiative addresses a critical gap in healthcare delivery by ensuring EMS providers are supported financially for the essential services they offer, regardless of patient transport decisions. His efforts highlight a profound commitment to enhancing patient care, supporting EMS providers, and advancing the integration of EMS services into the broader healthcare ecosystem.
EMS Leadership Award
  • Benjamin Swig of Acadian Health
    Benjamin Swig's visionary leadership at Acadian Health has been instrumental in transforming healthcare through innovative initiatives such as the Mobile Healthcare Division and value-based care agreements. His efforts in integrating EMS into broader healthcare delivery systems, from home healthcare innovations to partnerships for advanced medical solutions, demonstrate an exceptional commitment to improving patient care, efficiency, and outcomes. Swig's strategic initiatives have had a profound impact on the EMS and healthcare industries, making him a deserving recipient of the Leadership in Integrated Healthcare Award.
  • Jason Schaak of West Allis Fire Department
    Assistant Chief Jason Schaak of the West Allis Fire Department's Bureau of Mobile Integrated Health is recognized for his exceptional leadership in advancing community healthcare. By focusing on proactive and individualized care for residents heavily reliant on EMS, Schaak's work with the community paramedic program exemplifies innovative healthcare delivery that bridges gaps, reduces unnecessary hospital stays, and improves patient outcomes. His dedication to creating sustainable healthcare models and his impact on reducing overdose rates and improving the quality of life for community members underscore his significant contributions to integrated healthcare.

Lifetime Achievement Award

  • Dan Swayze, DrPH, MBA, MEMS

    Dan Swayze is honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award for his pioneering role in community paramedicine and his enduring impact on the EMS and healthcare industries. With over three decades of dedicated service, his leadership in developing the first MIH/CP program and integrating it into health plans has paved the way for innovative care models that significantly reduce acute care utilization. Swayze's contributions to education, program development, and advocacy have not only shaped the future of EMS but have also improved patient care and outcomes across the healthcare continuum.

“The AIMHI Excellence in Integration Award winners represent the very best in mobile integrated healthcare and its partners. We are proud to honor these exceptional programs and individuals for their contributions to public health,” said AIMHI President Chip Decker.

Those not in attendance will receive their awards locally.


Academy of International Mobile Healthcare Integration (AIMHI)

The Academy of International Mobile Healthcare Integration (AIMHI) represents high performance emergency medical and mobile healthcare providers in the U.S. and abroad. Member organizations are high-performance systems that employ business practices from both the public and private sectors. By combining industry innovation with close government oversight, AIMHI members are able to offer unsurpassed service excellence and cost efficiency.

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