Commission on Professional Credentialing Announces Name Change to the Chief Medical Officer Designation

(CHANTILLY, VIRGINIA)  The Center for Public Safety Excellence’s (CPSE) Commission on Professional Credentialing (CPC), in conjunction with EMS Week 2012, is re-launching the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) designation under the new name of Chief EMS Officer (CEMSO).

“We’re not only changing the title, we’re also going to be reaching out to all of the major EMS associations to further expand this credential on a much wider basis,” said Commission Chair Stephan D. Cox.  He continued, “It’s about moving this designation and the EMS profession forward.”

Approximately 90 people have received this designation since its inception. The program offers an opportunity to critically review an individual’s managerial performance in EMS, and lays out a path on areas for continual improvement. 

Last fall the CPC reviewed the program to learn how more people might pursue it. Overwhelmingly, the common answer received was that the title was not representative of what the position is. Some areas of the country do use the term CMO for their EMS Supervisor/Chief, but most use the term EMS. 

Representatives of organizations such as the National EMS Management Association (NEMSMA), National Association of State EMS Officials (NASEMSO), International Association of EMS Chiefs (IAEMSC), National Association of EMS Educators (NAEMSE), and the National Association of EMTs (NAEMT) all said they supported changing the title to follow the Fire and Emergency Services Higher Education (FESHE) model and incorporate EMS, thus the title Chief EMS Officer (CEMSO) was created.  This change is effective immediately, and all existing designees will be re-designated as Chief EMS Officers. 

“This is not about just fire-based EMS,” said Commissioner Norris W. Croom III, who serves as the EMS Representative on the Commission. “This is about EMS as a profession, as it doesn’t matter what patch you wear on your sleeve or what color ambulance you drive. It also doesn’t matter whether you are paid or volunteer. What does matter is that you have the desire to better yourself and EMS as a whole.”

For more information on the Chief EMS Officer (CEMSO) designation or any of the programs at CPSE, go to

About The Center for Public Safety Excellence, Inc.
The Center for Public Safety Excellence, Inc. (CPSE) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that, for more than a decade, has helped local public safety agencies around the world streamline and improve the services they provide their communities.

Through its individual commissions, CPSE provides a host of programs including accreditation for fire and emergency service agencies and professional designations for senior-level fire and emergency service officers.