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Illuminations CDE Programs

EMD Illuminations

The EMD Illuminations Program provides at-your-desk continuing education for telecommunicators and other public safety communications professionals. The program is offered as an annual subscription-based service.

Each month, EMD Illuminations instructors present timely, relevant topics that can be accessed online, anytime during the month, from any computer with Internet access. Although topics offered are medical in nature, participants do not need to be certified as emergency medical dispatchers to enroll in EMD Illuminations. APCO also offers General Illuminations and CTO Illuminations, each of which features a different set of dispatch education topics.

Each month-long course allows participants to earn one CDE, for a total of 12 CDEs per subscription year. Participants must submit copies of Illuminations certificates to the Institute of completion to receive CDEs.

EMD Illuminations Topics for 2020

Topics are subject to change.

Typhoid Fever
Typhoid fever is a foodborne, life-threatening illness caused by bacteria. An estimated 22 million cases of typhoid fever and 200,000 deaths occur worldwide each year. This course will cover mechanisms of transmission, signs  and symptoms, and responder precautions.
Tracheostomy (stoma)
A tracheostomy is a surgically created hole (stoma) in the patient’s windpipe (trachea) that provides an alternative airway for breathing. This session will focus on tracheostomy, including infections of the stoma and challenges created with difficulty breathing incidents.
Incidents Involving Chemical Substances
Chemical incidents are events involving accidental or intentional use or release of a chemical substance. This session will look at the 5 classes of chemical agents: nerve agents, blister agents, blood agents, choking agents, and irritating agents.
Complacency: The Most Dangerous Word in EMD
“Just another chest pain,” is a critical outlook. This session will focus on the mental preparedness of the EMD and ensuring that efforts are made to ensure the EMD does not become complacent, viewing calls for service as routine.
Dieting: What Are the Dangers of Fad Diets and Supplements?
It seems like the majority of adults you meet are on one type of fad diet or another; however, without medical oversight dieting can be dangerous. Everyone looking for a “magic weight loss pill” is likely to use and abuse supplements that increase the heart rate to a dangerous level, leading to chest pains and or fainting. This session also looks into common medical complications of dieting, including ketoacidosis, diabetic ketoacidosis, anorexia, bulimia and dehydration, and the applicable guidecards for the resulting medical emergencies.
Attacks Against Field Personnel
The news is full of cases of fire and EMS personnel being taken hostage, stabbed, jumped, beat, and shot. This session will focus on ensuring the EMD is considering the potential risk to responders on each call for service and paying attention to the small cues that may be present during caller interrogation that something is not right on scene.
Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV)
Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) is a respiratory illness caused by the virus MERS-CoV. This virus was first reported in 2012 in Saudi Arabia.  Over 30% of patients infected with MERS-CoV have died. This session will include signs and symptoms, as well as transmission.
Calling 9-1-1 for a headache is not the norm, so when a caller contacts emergency services for a headache, it is much more severe. The EMD must be aware of the various severe causes of headaches including aneurysms, hematomas and hemorrhages.
Measles Outbreak
This session will cover the transmission of the disease, signs and symptoms of measles (including the measles rash), the 3 C’s of measles, and complications.
Playground Injuries
When children go to the playground, the last thing on a parent's mind is injury. However, there are a considerable number of injuries that commonly occur, with falls as the leading cause of playground injuries. The most common injuries include fractured or broken bones, cuts, bumps and bruises, sprains, and concussions.
High-Risk Abdominal Pains
Patients presenting with abdominal pains may be experiencing high-risk emergencies. This session will focus on various types of high-risk abdominal pains that may demonstrate as extreme pain in the belly that does not go away, such as with aortic aneurysms, strokes, and myocardial infarction, and the symptoms of these conditions that the EMD may hear during the call taking process.
Improving Patient Care
This session will explore the medical devices on the market that inform the user about conditions for which they may not yet be diagnosed. This session will explore PSTs being exposed to this type of data and terminology that PST's may not be familiar with, how some of these devices may impact EMD protocols, data storage, and the possible HIPAA implications.

Annual Subscription

$119 non-member
$109 APCO member
$99 per person (group of 26-50 registrants)
$89 per person (group of 51+ registrants)

Purchase Illuminations

  • Go to the EMD Illuminations registration page, where you will see a list of classes by date.
  • Select the month for the version of EMD Illuminations you want to take
  • Click Register next to that topic and month.
  • Follow the instructions to complete registration for this track.

You will be subscribed to EMD Illuminations for 12 months starting with the month and topic you selected.