National EMS Week is an annual event celebrating the critical work done by Emergency Medical Services (EMS) providers in communities across the United States. This event is recognized by the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) and the National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians (NAEMT), and it takes place each year in May.

EMS providers are often the first point of contact in emergency situations, and they play a vital role in providing timely, life-saving care to patients. National EMS Week is an opportunity to recognize the bravery, dedication, and hard work of EMS providers and raise awareness about the challenges they face and their critical role in our communities.

The Theme for National EMS Week 2023

Each year, EMS Week is centered around a specific theme to highlight different aspects of the EMS profession. Themes such as “EMS Strong” and “Beyond the Call” have focused on the resilience and dedication of EMS providers. Various activities are organized throughout the week, including training sessions, educational programs, public safety demonstrations, and recognition ceremonies. This year’s theme is “Where Emergency Care Begins.”

“EMS Week is a time to celebrate the health professionals on the frontlines who save lives every day,” said Christopher S. Kang, MD, FACEP, President of ACEP. “Timely intervention from medical professionals before a patient reaches the emergency department can make all the difference in a crisis. Teams of dedicated first responders are doing everything they can for patients and their families and communities—overcoming challenges and individual risks and putting patients first to provide exceptional care to anyone who experiences a medical emergency.”

“During EMS Week, it’s so important to honor the paramedics, EMTs and others in EMS who do so much for their communities,” says NAEMT President Susan Bailey, MSEM, NRP. “‘Where Emergency Care Begins’ reminds the public of EMS’s most important mission – the ability to respond appropriately to the most urgent emergencies and to provide critical interventions in the field that save lives and reduce long-term disability.”

“EMS practitioners demonstrate their commitment to their patients countless times every day, often in difficult circumstances – whether it’s providing care on the side of a highway, carrying a patient down multiple flights of stairs or across treacherous terrain, or being in situations where their own safety isn’t guaranteed,” Bailey says. “EMS Week is an opportunity for both EMS agency leaders and communities to show our genuine appreciation and let them know that our communities value them.”

The History of National EMS Week

National EMS Week was first established in 1974 by President Gerald Ford, who declared the week of November 3-10 as National Emergency Medical Services Week. The event was later moved to May and has been recognized in May since 1992.

Events and Activities

National EMS Week involves a range of events and activities that EMS providers, healthcare organizations, and community groups organize. These events provide an opportunity to celebrate EMS providers, raise awareness about their work, and promote the importance of EMS in healthcare.

Some of the events that take place during National EMS Week include:

  • EMS Appreciation Day: This is a day to honor EMS providers and show appreciation for their hard work and dedication.
  • Community Outreach Programs: Many EMS providers organize outreach programs during National EMS Week to educate the public about their work and promote emergency preparedness.
  • Award Ceremonies: Many organizations and communities recognize outstanding EMS providers through award ceremonies and other events.
  • Continuing Education: National EMS Week is also an opportunity for EMS providers to participate in continuing education courses and seminars to enhance their skills and knowledge.


In conclusion, National EMS Week is an important event that recognizes the critical work EMS providers do in communities across the United States. This event provides an opportunity to celebrate the bravery, dedication, and hard work of EMS providers and raise awareness about the challenges they face and their critical role in healthcare.

Through various events and activities, National EMS Week promotes the importance of supporting EMS providers and engaging with communities to promote emergency preparedness and support for EMS providers. By acknowledging and celebrating the contributions of EMS providers, we can build greater awareness and understanding of this important and essential aspect of healthcare.

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