EMS Research

The EMS program strives for leading-edge research and innovation in pre-hospital care on topics ranging from stroke and rescuscitation to biosecurity and pharmacology. Our faculty and fellows benefit from close collaboration with Stanford experts across multiple disciplines. Multiple ongoing research efforts explore advances in CPR, disaster planning, stroke, opiate abuse, and EMS system design, among others.

High Performance CPR

Stanford has launched an initiative to train physicians, nurses and technicians in the process of high-performance CPR, originally developed at the Seattle Rescuscitation Academy.  HP-CPR differs from traditional CPR in several respects, most notably in a team approach and attention to steps that eliminate unnecessary pauses. In implementing and measuring both the protocols and the results, Stanford is contributing to the growing body of research on how to improve CPR survival rates and minimize long-term damage. (See full story)

Disaster Planning

Disaster medicine, a section within EMS, is extensively engaged with the healthcare system providing medical direction to the Stanford Office of Emergency Management, as well as leading a national and international response group (SEMPER) that includes faculty, residents, and hospital staff. In addition, we provide extensive medical support to the federal urban search and rescue system.


Stanford, led by emergency medicine physician Prasanthi Govindarajan, MD, is utilizing largescale databases and sophisticated analysis to see how different EMS systems impact the survival rates of time-sensitive conditions, in particular stroke-related disabilities and treatment. Other research includes a multi-institutional study of the use of mobile stroke units; utilization of different stroke scales for large vessel occlusions; and telemedicine.

EMS System Design

The EMS division is engaged with national, state and local stakeholders in redesigning the role of EMS in the community, to include community paramedicine.