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AAP Statement on Senate Passage of Emergency Medical Services for Children Reauthorization

12/12/2018 by: Colleen A. Kraft, MD, MBA, FAAP, President, American Academy of Pediatrics

“The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) applauds the U.S. Senate for passing legislation yesterday evening to reauthorize the Emergency Medical Services for Children (EMSC) program. For more than 30 years, the EMSC program has worked to ensure children and adolescents receive emergency medical care designed specifically for them in times of need. It is critical that this program continues for years to come, which is why we are calling on the U.S. House of Representatives to act.

"Pediatric emergency services begin the moment a call is placed with 9-1-1 and extend until a child is safely returned home. Children are not little adults – medical devices and life-saving drugs need to be sized and dosed specifically for children and the personnel providing emergency medical care should be trained for their unique needs; the EMSC program makes sure that is possible.

"We cannot predict when an emergency will occur, but the EMSC program provides peace of mind that children and adolescents will have the medical care they need, when they need it. The Academy thanks Senators Bob Casey (D-Pa.), Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) for their work to champion this bill. Pediatricians urge the House to pass this legislation without delay so that all children can receive optimal emergency care no matter where they live."

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The American Academy of Pediatrics is an organization of 67,000 primary care pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and pediatric surgical specialists dedicated to the health, safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults. For more information, visit aap.org and follow us on Twitter @AmerAcadPeds.