Danny Garrison Wins Virginia Governor's EMS Award

November 13, 2012

RICHMOND, VA—Danny Garrison, Richmond Ambulance Authority’s director of communications, has won the 2012 Governor’s EMS Award for Outstanding Contribution to Emergency Medical Services Telecommunication. The Governor’s EMS Awards were presented Saturday night during the 33rd Annual Virginia EMS Symposium at the Norfolk Waterside Marriott. The winners of the various EMS award categories were presented with a certificate signed by Governor Bob McDonnell and an award trophy.

“Danny has not only done an outstanding job in his role as director of our communications center, he has also contributed to the improvement of emergency communications on a state, national and international level,” said Chip Decker, CEO of the Richmond Ambulance Authority. “We are pleased Danny was recognized by the governor for his efforts and also very proud of the entire RAA team for the excellent job they all do on a daily basis.”

Garrison leads a 16 person team at the Richmond Ambulance Authority that provides command, control and communication for RAA’s operations. RAA receives approximately 60,000 calls for service each year and responds to 52,000 of these calls in addition to handling the 100,000 or more additional telephone and radio calls necessary to operate this busy EMS system. Despite the heavy call volume, RAA’s response times are among the fastest in the nation, and RAA remains one of the few EMS agencies in the United States accredited by both the Commission on the Accreditation of Ambulance Services (CAAS) and the National Academies of Emergency Dispatch (NAED).

In 2011, Garrison was appointed by Governor McDonnell to the State E911 Board and embarked on a communications project with the University of Oslo, Norway, to compare and contrast the U.S.-based Medical Priority Dispatch System (MPDS) against the European Criteria Based Dispatch (CBD) System. And in 2012, Garrison was invited to become a member of the NAED International Research Committee, alongside members from such countries as the United Kingdom, Canada, Austria and Brazil. He has also worked to help improve the performance of the Richmond Police Department’s Division of Emergency Communications.

“We know that life saving in Richmond begins when we receive the call, and the RAA communications team can begin to initiate the world-class EMS and dispatch life support we are renowned for,” said Garrison. “This award is an acknowledgement of the hard work of the team at RAA that manages the system as well as being a huge personal honor to be singled out as a leader in EMS communications by the governor and EMS community across the commonwealth.”

Garrison also won the 2012 Old Dominion EMS Alliance (ODEMSA) Regional Award for Outstanding EMS Telecommunications Dispatcher in July.

About the Richmond Ambulance Authority
In 1991, the Richmond City Council and the city manager implemented an emergency medical services (EMS) system that placed the patient first and guaranteed its performance to the city’s residents. Today, the Richmond Ambulance Authority responds to approximately 135 calls per day and transports, on average, 110 patients per day. RAA’s emergency response times are among the fastest in the nation with ambulances on the scene of life threatening emergencies in less than 8 minutes and 59 seconds in more than 90% of all responses. RAA is one of only 15 EMS agencies in the United States accredited by both the Commission on the Accreditation of Ambulance Services and the National Academies of Emergency Dispatch. RAA is also a Commonwealth of Virginia Accredited Dispatch Center. For more information, see www.raaems.org.