LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Oct. 5, 2009) – Bellarmine University and Louisville Metro EMS announced today that the Bellarmine Emergency Response Team, known as BERT, has been approved to provide emergency medical services at campus events. The team is among a select group of university-sponsored emergency medical groups comprised entirely of student volunteers.
"The Bellarmine Emergency Response Team is an excellent example of student initiative," said Bellarmine University President Joseph J. McGowan. "The team was completely student-organized and continues to grow because of the dedication of student volunteers."
The Bellarmine Emergency Response Team began as a senior service project two years ago. It started with one student and has grown to 10 student volunteers in a brief period. All members are certified EMTs.
"We have invested millions of dollars in technology, communication and training to make sure our community's emergency response is as strong as possible," said Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson. "Having another highly skilled team in a densely populated area like a university is a great benefit for our city. Bellarmine's Emergency Response Team will be a wonderful complement to Louisville Metro EMS."
The students, who wear standard EMT uniforms, provide CPR instruction to the campus community in addition to staffing campus events. Many of the BERT students were trained through Louisville Metro EMS and volunteer regularly to assist the city during large community events, such as the Kentucky Derby, Thunder Over Louisville and Oaks Day.
"Recently, EMS introduced a new partnership with the American Heart Association and Jefferson County Public Schools to teach CPR in the schools. With BERT, we're working to create an even wider and deeper emergency medical response capability for Louisville -- one that reaches not only into our streets, schools and homes, but directly into our university campuses as well," said Dr. Neal Richmond, director, Louisville Metro EMS. "This is an exciting development for Bellarmine University, for Louisville Metro EMS and for our community."
Bellarmine University is an independent Catholic university offering more than 50 majors, as well as graduate degree programs and a doctor of physical therapy. Forbes magazine and the
Princeton Review rank Bellarmine among America's best institutions for higher learning, and U.S. News and World Report consistently ranks Bellarmine as a top tier university.