Growing Resilience in EMS Toolkit
EMS GRIT, which stands for Growing Resilience in EMS Toolkit, is a project led by the National EMS Management Association (NEMSMA), which offers EMS leaders vetted resources to help support provider mental health and well-being.
As leaders, we know people are our most precious resource. Our people, who devote their lives in service to others, are a special breed. They give so much and bear witness to some of the greatest challenges to the human condition.
It is a sacred duty of leaders in paramedicine to support our staff to do their best work in service to others. It is the right thing to do, and there’s a strong business case for caring for the well-being of our employees.
EMS GRIT is a toolkit to help leaders care for the mental health and well-being of their people.
Many of our colleagues combat mental health challenges due to critical stress, but are too ashamed to seek help. We need to eliminate the stigma surrounding mental health treatment so our people do not suffer in silence.
Every time first responders are called on to help, they run the risk of experiencing traumatic stress. Responders must learn tactics that help them to avoid burnout and compassion fatigue, and EMS leaders need provide a supportive environment that encourages their staff to exercise self-care.
Stress is vital to our profession — it helps providers prioritize and focus on the task at hand. But without discipline, stress can change course and become detrimental to our ability to cope. Responders must build resilience and learn to understand our limitations and adapt to adversity.