Over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, recommendations for mitigating virus transmission have continually been modified due to new knowledge about virus transmission, changes in prevalence within communities, and the availability of vaccinations. EMS and fire personnel received many recommendations to mitigate the risks of COVID -19 exposure. These recommendations focus on the use of personal protective equipment (PPE) when in contact with individuals with confirmed or suspected COVID-19.
This website provides recommendations specifically for EMS and fire agencies to sustain risk mitigation practices during the COVID-19 pandemic, including educational materials and sample SOPs/SOGs. These recommendations follow CDC guidance but may be modified by EMS and fire agencies to best address risk mitigation needs at their workplaces, especially as recommendations change for staff that are fully vaccinated.
Note that while interim recommendations from the CDC have relaxed mitigation procedures (e.g., face coverings) by vaccinated people outside of healthcare settings, recommendations for EMS and fire personnel have not changed. This is especially important for agencies without all staff fully vaccinated. Maintenance of clear EMS and fire agency SOPs/SOGs is critical to responder safety and the sustained response of these personnel during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Support for these documents comes from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Intergovernmental Personnel Act/Agreement (IPA) - Patterson PD, Martin-Gill C, Guyette FX, 20IPA2014138, 20IPA2014139, 20IPA2014141).
Last Updated June 16, 2021
See below for links to documents and materials.
PDF of Full Guidebook with 5 SOPs / SOGs