EMS has been part of my life for a long time, and I want to continue to push our profession to new possibilities. For too many, EMS has been considered ‘a ride to the hospital.’ At some point, we all have been called ‘ambulance drivers’ — as though all we do is drive.
The past two years have proven we are so much more than that. We’ve provided care for desperately ill patients as COVID overwhelmed resources and staff. We rallied to help each other as well as our small hospitals get patients transferred safely. We responded to calls and treated patients at home in some cases. Then we not only helped with vaccine clinics, but some of us organized the clinics and turned our ambulance bays into vaccine stations. Others went to homebound patients and did vaccinations there.
Those challenges (and successes) have shown hospitals, doctors, nurses, other colleagues, and the public that we are professionals at work.
I will work to elevate our profession so that we can be better recognized as a valuable part of the health care system — and be reimbursed accordingly. We must work to promote and enhance EMS as a professional career path so that we can recruit and retain high-quality providers. We must also embrace new opportunities that can help us better serve our communities. Mobile Integrated Healthcare and Community Paramedicine, for example, present an exceptional opportunity to leverage our existing infrastructure and improve patient outcomes, but they must be supported by a sustainable reimbursement model.
MEMSA is in a position to influence and advocate for each of these goals, and as a member of the Board of Directors, I will work tirelessly to improve EMS in our state.
My background includes working in Fire and EMS since 2004. I started out at a volunteer fire department. After obtaining my paramedic license, I wanted to see more of the country and moved New Mexico, where I worked at a hospital-based EMS system that offered challenging long-distance transports and excellent critical-care experience. A few years later we returned to the Kansas City area to be closer to family. I have served in numerous roles including EMS education, flight paramedic, Operations Director and to my current role with LifeFlight Eagle as its Clinical Base Manager. I still keep my paramedic skills sharp and my boots on the ground working part-time as a firefighter-paramedic at a rural Missouri agency.
I live in Liberty and have been married to my wife Andrea for 15 years. We have an 8-year-old daughter named Bella. I am a family guy and I enjoy spending time with my girls, the great outdoors, boating, and hunting on our family farm in Northern Missouri.