The profile of an emergency medical services leader: a multi-national qualitative study

February 2015

This article discusses the profile of an Emergency Medical Services (EMS) leader that emerged from a larger study on how EMS leadership is learned from a multinational qualitative study of EMS providers working in Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. EMS is a team-oriented profession designed to respond to emergencies and disasters. Within EMS are leaders responsible for ensuring response capabilities, which has been plagued with criticisms and shortcomings. Different leadership styles have been applied to EMS but no one style is ideal for every situation or circumstance encountered by EMS leaders. The findings discovered that EMS leaders are found throughout an EMS system and need to understand the importance of their actions, have integrity and take responsibility. Among other characteristics and qualities, EMS leaders needed to be communicators who solve problems and lead by example, are fair and able to separate personal from professional.

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