Recognition of the best performing emergency medical technicians – the GVK EMRI way

Published in Autumn 2018 Edition of Ambulance Today Magazine

As of July 2018, GVKEMRI is operating in 14 states and two Union Territories in India, with about 19,000 EMTs and ambulance drivers known as ‘Pilots’. In such a large, non-profit organisation with nearly 26,000 emergencies being responded to on a daily basis, recognizing the best performing EMTs is an essential prerequisite. 

The quality of case-handling and pre-hospital care is a special area of focus. Real-time documentation, study, research, analysis, recommendations based on real-time cases are also of prime importance. This will allow timely feedback and appreciation of Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) and Pilots (ambulance drivers) in the field with regards to the administration of necessary pre-hospital care measures. The Best Case selection committee at the state level are a group comprising of representatives from the medical department, operations team and HR departments. Best cases are published in a monthly periodical titled EMCARE both at the state level and national levels.

Based on the pre-determined selection criteria, two cases from each district are considered at the first stage for the best case of the month. Cases are gathered through a nomination process. Wide publicity is given to the best-case process amongst the work force at the ambulance level and supervisory level group meetings etc. EMTs and Pilots report cases to their district manager within 24 hours of case-handling. 

Best case selection criteria are as follows: 

• Case Nature – Critical / Serious/ Unique / Challenging

• Appropriate patient assessment protocol followed 

• Emergency Response Centre Physicians (ERCP) medical direction (Online Medical Direction – OLMD) obtained 

• Essential pre-hospital care provided 

• Precise (complete and correct) documentation of the case – voice log at state level Emergency Response Centre (ERC)/ Pre-hospital Care Record (PCR)/ photograph depicting the pre-hospital intervention 

• Patient alive in 48-hour follow-up • Optimal arrival time to scene 

• Optimal (justified to the judgment of the committee) on- scene time 

• Proper ongoing assessment 

The role of the Pilot (ambulance driver) is assessed for best cases, in terms of safe driving measures, required support to EMT in provision of scene safety, and appropriate photography depicting the pre-hospital care interventions with consent of the patient, without disturbing the services and facilitating anonymization (i.e. covering the eyes). 

Such cases selected from each state are published in the monthly state level EMCARE magazine. Each case will have a brief description of the emergency, a photograph taken while pre-hospital care was being rendered, a media clipping (if published) and accounts of the EMTs & Pilots in handling such a case. 

Timelines are fixed from the process of selection to publishing in the state level EMCARE magazine and a compilation of best cases from month-to-month from the districts, as well as the objectively-selected state level best case as per the selection committee. Cases from 26th of the month to the 25th of the following month will qualify for the current selection process. The monthly periodical is published on the 15th of the month. The EMCARE awards ceremony takes place on the 20th of the month. At the state level, the Chief Operating Officer (COO) or Regional Managers will preside over the EMCARE award ceremony.

The Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) Department will circulate the monthly periodical to all national, state, district-level stakeholders, visitors and key government personnel. 

At the national level, state level best cases are compiled by a single point of contact before the 25th of the month. Every aspect of the completeness and correctness of the cases are validated at the state level SPOC for best case and EMCARE magazine. Medical team members from the Emergency Medicine Learning Centre will coordinate with the national best case committee – a broad-based committee with at least seven members selected from various states of HR, Operations and Medical Teams.

All the cases which are selected at the national level are given the 108 Saviour of GVKEMRI India award at the quarterly ‘National Review Meeting’ at the main office of GVKEMRI by the Chairman of the GVK Foundation. Awardees also receive a medal, a certificate of appreciation and a cash reward for both the EMT and Pilot of the ambulance.

The rewards and recognition process by the organization is one of several sources of recognition towards ambulance staff. At the national festivals days, like Independence Day, in most of the districts best-performing EMTs and Pilots also receive special awards from the District Magistrate for their services beyond the call of duty.

Social recognitions the EMTs and Pilots get from the communities they serve are over and above the formal recognitions they obtain from the organisation. At the end of the day, EMTs work with enhanced professional zeal and passion after receiving recognition. 

To find out more about GVK EMRI visit their website at:

1 reply
  1. Clarissa
    Clarissa says:

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