1994: EMS Education Prior to Statewide Dissemination of POLST
Dr. Terri Schmidt, an emergency medicine physician and a county EMS medical director, along with Jerry Andrews EMT-P and other EMS professionals helped assure that POLST development and implementation was designed in ways that could be honored by EMS providers and emergency medicine physicians statewide. The initial form, developed by a Oregon ethics leaders, EMS, and all of the member stakeholders was modified with EMS fully engaged as partners in every step of the revision process. Prior to clinical use first responders were given clinical scenarios to assure orders would never result in under treatment (see annotation of Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 1996;44, 785-791). Once this pilot testing was complete and prior to statewide dissemination of the Oregon POLST Program, Dr. Schmidt led an intensive EMS educational effort. As with other professional groups, EMS education has been and needs to be supplemented with additional yearly instruction.