Rowan County Pair is N.C.'s Top Paramedic Team for 2017

A team from Rowan County gave the top performance at this week's North Carolina Paramedic Championship.

Author: Scott Coleman

N.C. OEMS Chief Tom Mitchell (center) presents Rowan County EMS’ Daniel Medina (left), and Aaron Thurston the championship plaque for winning the 27th Annual N.C. Paramedic Competition held Sunday, Oct. 1, in Greensboro.

Oct. 4, 2017 — A team from Rowan County gave the top performance at this week's North Carolina Paramedic Championship.

Daniel Medina and Aaron Thurston claimed top honors following the 27th Annual Paramedic Competition, held at the Koury Convention Center in Greensboro during the annual Emergency Medicine Today Conference.

They out-performed the defending champions from Surry County EMS, Jose Butron and Josh LeCrone, and four other teamsfrom Mecklenburg EMS, Stokes County EMS, Randolph County EMS and Forsyth Emergency Services that were chosen from regional competitions in July. The championship competition is sponsored by the North Carolina Office of Emergency Medical Services.

Tom Mitchell, chief of the Office, announced the winners to cheers and applause from a banquet hall packed with hundreds of paramedics, EMTs and county emergency services medical directors.  

"All of the contenders truly are winners," said Mitchell. "They are the best of the best and are on the leading edge of performance in emergency medical response; we offer our special congratulations to this year’s winners, Rowan County EMS."

During the competition, teams were sequestered and drew lots to determine their order as each was called out to face a room full of peers while treating injuries from a mock 911 call about a young child locked in a hot car.

In the scenario, the competing team arrives on the scene to treat an unspecified number of victims. The only information they have comes from dispatch and what they are able to determine as they assess the scene. 

The competition provides a training opportunity not only for the competitors, but also for the paramedics and emergency medical technicians who closely observe each team's analysis and reaction to the scenario from bleachers positioned a short distance away. Large video screens display close-up views as care is administered. Teams are judged on professionalism, communication, patient rapport, conduct, attitude, appearance and attire.

Through the Office of Emergency Medical Services, the Department of Health and Human Services works to foster emergency medical systems, trauma systems and credentialed EMS personnel to improve responses to emergencies and disasters.


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