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National EMS Quality Alliance Releases Revised EMS Compass Measures

Oct 23, 2019


National EMS Quality Alliance Releases Revised EMS Compass Measures

Dateline: Fort Worth, TX, October 2019 

The National EMS Quality Alliance (NEMSQA) is excited to announce the release of revised EMS Compass Measures.   The updated NEMSQA web site describes the measures in detail and includes a technical information package necessary for quality, research, and IT professionals to extract data and implement measure utilization.  Each measure is presented with a narrative, which tells the story of how the measure is significant and why it was developed.  The narratives assist in understanding the value of using the measures for performance improvement in every type and size of EMS agency. 

Michael Redlener, the Chair of the Measurement Development Committee and Board Trustee stated, “NEMSQA is excited to be part of the historic effort to identify and validate meaningful EMS quality measures that can support local, state, and national efforts to improve clinical care and safety for patients.  We thank our partner agencies and NHTSA for support in this important effort.  The publication of the updated EMS Compass Measures represents the culmination of more than a decade of work by many people and organizations dedicated to measuring and improving care in EMS.”   

The EMS Compass Measure Set was originally developed by the National Association of State EMS Officials,  a project funded by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). After a rigorous research and development period, fourteen candidate measures were released for public testing in 2016.

In an effort to continue work on these important measures,  NHTSA awarded the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) a contract to carry forward the EMS Performance Measures initiative. This included the tasks of reviewing and revising the candidate EMS Compass Measures and, out of this initiative, the National EMS Quality Alliance (NEMSQA) was formed. Now an independent organization, NEMSQA has adopted its own rigorous measure development process that will be used to create measures for improving  EMS care. Over the past seven months, the NEMSQA measure development process,  including phases of research, specification, and testing, was applied to the candidate EMS Compass Measures, and informed revisions and re-specifications to the measures.

In August 2019, the NEMSQA Measure Development Committee and Board of Trustees approved eleven of the re-specified Compass measures for continuation in the revised measure set. NEMSQA  finalized these measures and developed accompanying resources that stakeholders feel will be valuable to the EMS community.

“The updated website provides everything an EMS quality improvement manager needs to start basic data measurement for improvement of patient care.  We hope to build a network of quality professionals who will utilize and provide feedback on these measures, so we can continually improve the measure set as well as our EMS systems,” noted Brooke Burton, NEMSQA Trustee and Communications Committee Chair.

To learn more about the revised EMS Compass Measures, including information on specific measures, visit

NAEMT is a member organization of NEMSQA.