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August 1, 1977

Emergency Medicine Training

JAMA. 1977;238(5):396. doi:10.1001/jama.1977.03280050036004

To the Editor.—  In the article "Medical Care in the Streets" (237:43, 1977), Nancy L. Caroline, MD, perceptively pointed out that the "weakest link" in the development of emergency medical services (EMS) systems may very well be the physician. With the rapid advancement in the technology of communications, transportation, and rescue, the emergency physician must become familiar, indeed expert, in areas that are covered in medical school curricula or in the traditional residency or fellowship programs.Dr Caroline outlines nine areas of expertise that are required to provide medical direction of modern EMS systems that heretofore a limited number of physicians have mastered by self-education and trial and error. As a solution to this dilemma, Caroline proposes that a "course of instruction for doctors by radio is urgently needed." I would submit that, although such courses are desirable, an even greater effort is necessary to meet the specialized physician manpower