What is EMS Medicine?

Posted: 16th November 2017 by Dr D in opinion

Was asked the other day what is EMS/PreHospital Medicine for doctors?

Loose the coat, we’re going outside!

– after I thought a min, my go to answer is, “Practicing EM outside the 4-walls of an Emergency Department”

  • EMS Physician
  • Flight Physician
  • Tactical Physician
  • Event Medicine
  • Disaster Medicine
  • Austere/Wilderness Medicine
  • Mass Gathering Medicine
  • Research & Publications

Then again, I might have to change my thinking, because this is just “doctoring” without all the resources and luxuries that we have gotten used to having when we are working clinically. I still think the best doctors are the ones who take a GREAT history and have PHENOMENAL physical examination and observational skills.


Learning to be an Emergency Medicine “MacGyver” (yes, that’s my hero and showing my age, I know) is not easy and I have found to be so much more fun and exciting. As the House of Medicine gets more reliant on technology and testing, we are loosing those PE and personal skills.

EMS Docs in general supervise providers and practice themselves in those kinds of environments. When the zombie apocalypse hits or the large electromagnetic pulse disables all of our computers and technology; its gonna be our time to shine.