Commission Endorses Position Paper on Biometric Criminal History Checks

December 6, 2023 – The Interstate Commission for EMS Personnel Practice is excited to announce the approval and release of the Position Paper titled "Biometric Criminal History Checks for EMS Personnel" (POSITION PAPER 2023-01), effective December 6, 2023. This position paper underscores the vital necessity for a consistent implementation of FBI-compliant biometric criminal history records checks for all Emergency Medical Services practitioner licensures in the United States.

The Commission firmly maintains that biometric checks for EMS practitioners, who frequently engage with vulnerable populations in various settings, are an essential aspect of public safety and protection. This measure brings EMS in line with other healthcare professions, ensuring uniformity across health professions in the protection of public welfare and the maintenance of the highest standards of professional integrity.

The Commission asserts that FBI-compliant biometric criminal history record checks should be the national standard for all EMS practitioners. With the adoption of the Recognition of EMS Personnel Practice Interstate Compact (REPLICA) by 24 states, which mandates biometric criminal history checks, the Position Paper recommends that this FBI-compliant background check practice be extended to all EMS personnel nationwide. The focus is on enhancing public safety, professional ethics, public trust, and addressing the unique challenges present in EMS service.

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