This week is National Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Week, and those of us in the Department of Homeland Security are proud to recognize the EMS responders across the country who serve on the front lines of emergency healthcare. These men and women have chosen to answer the call of a career that demands passion, purpose, and heart. Each plays a critical role in our nation’s health security.
In 2014, the world faced a public health emergency with the outbreak of Ebola across West Africa. In response, President Obama declared Ebola a national security priority and directed a government-wide aggressive response to limit the risk of the disease reaching the Homeland. Working closely with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Department of Homeland Security quickly established an effective screening process by funneling 94 percent of passengers originating from Ebola-affected countries into five designated U.S. airports. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) also implemented measures at all other U.S. ports of entry to conduct enhanced screening of the remaining six percent of travelers. During this time not a single traveler exhibiting Ebola symptoms is known to have entered the country undetected.
The Department of Homeland Security is proud to recognize Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Week – an opportunity to focus on the important work of our EMS providers and thank them for their service and protection. These individuals, who often put themselves at personal risk to help others, play a critical role in our Nation’s homeland security.
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is proud to support the State of Arizona, the National Football League (NFL), the cities of Glendale and Phoenix, and our federal, state and local partners as they work to keep Super Bowl XLIX fans, players and employees safe before, during and after this weekend’s big game.
DHS works with state and local officials through the BioWatch program to monitor for traces of dangerous pathogens in public places where large groups of people gather to ensure that we respond quickly when a potential threat is identified.