HAMMOND, Indiana - Area first responders enjoyed camaraderie, food and friendly competition in the annual "Battle of the Medics," held at Franciscan Health Hammond, Dyer and Munster in celebration of EMS week May 20-24, 2019.
Personnel from Hammond Fire Department, Calumet City Fire Department and Superior Ambulance Service, along with students in the Hammond Area Career Center EMT program participated in the five-station race against the clock, testing their skill and knowledge. Anthony Smith of the Hammond Fire Department had the best paramedic time, and Maren Hufnagl from the Hammond Area Career Center had the best EMT time. The best agency overall score went to the Hammond Fire Department, which repeated their top finish in 2018.
Welch's Stop & Shop in St. John catered and cooked for the hungry crews and other hospital personnel. A UCAN medical helicopter and flight team visited the Hammond event. Franciscan Alliance EMS Coordinator Matthew Eddy said between 50 and 100 visitors were fed at each location, even though weather prevented the games and a helicopter visit in Munster.
"As the EMS Coordinator, my main goal is to facilitate a great relationship between pre-hospital personnel and the front-line hospital staff. These events allow them to hang out, enjoy good food, friendly competition and just get to know each other better. They all have very difficult jobs and sometimes it's easy to forget how much they rely on one another," Eddy said.