“In this job, you will face some of the most difficult and trying things you will ever know. These things can weigh on you, and sometimes you will not understand why? Your family will be unsure as to why you have issues and why you are distant.” — Graham Losse, Nature Coast EMS paramedic.

Nature Coast Emergency Medical Services EMTs and paramedics live this quote daily. They are your health care first responders — crews who passionately make their way through the streets of Citrus County to get to those with chest pain, breathing problems, deep lacerations, seizures, strokes and more. They are highly trained and highly committed. They serve each patient with excellence and compassion.

That’s why we offer the Nature Coast EMS Citizen’s Academy, so that we can give those who live in our community a little bit of the behind-the-scenes action that occurs in the EMT/paramedic world. We want you to know how we will care for you in the worst of times, and how we have the know-how to handle basically any medical situation we face.

The Nature Coast EMS Citizen’s Academy is only six weeks long and starts on Tuesday, Sept. 24, from 6 to 9 p.m. It is held every Tuesday until graduation on Oct. 29. In addition to learning what EMTs/paramedics do on a daily basis, you’ll experience a field trip to see a demonstration of our rescue swimmers, the only such team in Citrus County, as well as some of our specialty equipment. The class also includes Heartsavers CPR/AED training.

Best of all, the Citizen’s Academy is free and gives you an opportunity to experience the excitement of what it’s like to be a first responder. To register, simply visit natturecoastems.org and click on Education, then scroll down to the Citizen’s Academy under Upcoming Classes. Or email heather.yates@naturecoastems.org. There are open spots available at the moment, so reserve your seat now to see how we serve our community with excellence and compassion. Looking forward to seeing you in September.

Mike Hall is president/CEO of Nature Coast EMS.

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