Negotiations continue in effort to reinstate TEMS

Lauren Gaines, Contributing Reporter

Tulane University students will soon have access to more affordable emergency medical services due to reinstatement of the student-run Tulane EMS program.

The service, which provided free 24-hour emergency medical care to students, was placed on deferred suspension in March 2015 for one year after the organization was found responsible for failing to comply with the university’s 2014-15 Code of Student Conduct.

In response, many Tulane students petitioned the university to reinstate the program, which provides students with free on-call emergency medical attention. At the forefront of the efforts to get TEMS reinstated was the student organized program, #BringBackTEMS, which was co-founded by Tulane Undergraduate Student Government Senator, Josh Rosenbaum.

“When Student Affairs suspended Tulane Emergency Medical Services last fall, the student body lost a service that provided invaluable care for alcohol-related emergencies, physical injuries, survivors of sexual assault and students struggling with mental illness,” Rosenbaum said. “TEMS gives students the peace of mind that even with the stress of tuition and all of our living expenses on our shoulders, Tulane will take care of us.”

Tulane junior Elena Perito echoes Rosenbaum’s sentiment. She sees TEMS as not only a smart economic choice for students, but also as one that ensures a personable and friendly experience for students.

“They’re not being like “I have better places to be’…they’re catered to [the] student,” Perito said.

During the past year, the university has been enacting plans to revamp the program and make it better for both those working with TEMS and those who will receive its services.

Assitant Vice President for Campus Health, Dr. Scott Tims, says that the university’s plan was not to permanently disband TEMS, but rather to address the issues that had arisen concerning the conduct, medical practice and training of TEMS members.

“Over the last year, working across campus offices, with alumni, TEMS members and the community EMS providers there was a concerted effort to bring back Tulane EMS in a way that would set it up as a model EMS service,” Tims said “We at Campus Health felt it was important to provide all the necessary resources for the organization to be successful.”

The new TEMS program will include a full-time staff member to provide training and assist the students with daily management of the program, and has been employing the assistance of alumni to mentor current TEMS members.

Though the TEMS program is working to restore services to students, it is not ready just yet.

“We are currently in negotiation with the city of New Orleans on an agreement that is required for such services to operate. We will send out a communication to all students once this is accomplished,” Tims said.

In the meantime, if students are in need of on-campus emergency medical attention, they should contact Campus Health Services at (504) 865-5911, and for off-campus emergencies, they should contact 911.