Florida continues its commitment to providing quality Emergency Medical Services (EMS) for its citizens and visitors, services that are founded on the principles of quality improvement, ensuring that an optimal, uniform and standard of prehospital emergency medical care is available to everyone in Florida.
To make this commitment a reality, the Florida Prehospital EMS Tracking and Reporting System (EMSTARS) program was created. This program provides for the collection of incident level data from EMS agencies and subsequent analysis for benchmarking and identifying quality improvement initiatives. This program has been implemented with the guidance of the EMS Advisory Council Data Committee who has defined and maintains a Data Dictionary ensuring the standardized collection of EMS incident data into the state repository providing project oversight and steering.
Additional information about Florida's Prehospital EMS Tracking and Reporting System is available in this EMSTARS Basic Facts document.
The National EMS Information System (NEMSIS) Technical Assistance Center has released NEMSIS version 3. NEMSIS version 3 represents a revision from the existing version 2.2.1 released in 2005 as well as the initial movement of this standard into Health Level 7 (HL7). NEMSIS Version 3 will soon become the EMS industry data standard capable of describing EMS from an operational, service delivery, and patient care perspective.
NEMSIS Version 3 provides a much richer level of documentation within EMS and enables greater linkages to other patient care systems. Details on NEMSIS Version 3 can be accessed at www.nemsis.org
Bureau of EMS - Florida Release Plan for NEMSIS 3.0
In preparation for the next phase of data integration with the release of NEMSIS version 3, the Florida EMS Advisory Council Data Committee has drafted the new Florida EMS Dataset for version 3. The Florida EMS Advisory Council voted to approve the Florida EMS Dataset version 3 during the January 2012 EMSAC meeting.
The Bureau of EMS and the EMSAC Data Committee are working to finalize Florida's Transition to NEMSIS version 3. The transition plan will define the implementation plan and time frames, the time period for accepting NEMSIS 2.2.1 and NEMSIS version 3, and other transition needs.
At this time and until further notification, the Bureau of EMS will only accept files that are compliant with the current Florida EMS Data Dictionary 1.4.1 (NEMSIS 2.2.1 compliance) for agencies reporting to EMSTARS.
EMS agencies who are currently submitting to EMSTARS should not transition to NEMSIS version 3 software prior to notification from the Bureau on the transition / implementation plan.
EMS agencies should communicate with their software vendors about their vendors plans to support Florida EMSTARS 1.4.1 and their vendor's plans for transitioning to NEMSIS version 3.
EMS agencies should negotiate with their vendors for the continued support of Florida EMSTARS 1.4.1 software throughout Florida's transition to NEMSIS version 3.
EMS agencies that are procuring new ePCR (electronic patient care reporting) software should not finalize their negotiations without consultation with the Bureau of EMS, Data Unit and are advised not to procure software that will not allow for Florida EMSTARS 1.4.1 support until Florida is ready to begin its transition to accept NEMSIS version 3.
The Bureau of EMS and the EMSAC Data Committee will provide notification once the Florida Transition Plan and transition timeframes are finalized for Florida's NEMSIS version 3 release.
Although NEMSIS is releasing NEMSIS version 3, the NEMSIS TAC will continue to accept NEMSIS 2.2.1 data from states through December 31, 2015 to allow software vendors, states and agencies to implement NEMSIS version 3.
For further information and assistance, please contact the Bureau of EMS, Data Unit staff by email or by phone.
Florida has a very broad public records law. Most written communications to or from state officials regarding state business are public records available to the public and media upon request. Your email communications may therefore be subject to disclosure
If you have a story to tell, or something or someone to Spotlight, please contact Steve McCoy at the Bureau of EMS, Data Unit.
This page was reviewed and updated on August 13, 2014