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Press Release

Contra Costa EMS Medical Director Receives Statewide Honor

December 8, 2009

The medical director for Contra Costa Emergency Medical Services (EMS) has been named 2008 California EMS Medical Director of the Year.

Dr. Joe Barger was chosen for the statewide award because of his leadership on the Statewide EMS Scope of Practice Committee. The committee is comprised of EMS medical directors from around the state and advises the California EMS Authority on matters regarding the medications and interventions used by those working in the field.

"I am appreciative and quite honored to receive this award," said Dr. Barger, who was honored at an event last week in San Francisco. "The EMS community is special to work with—there are many dedicated people at both the state and local level who work hard to improve prehospital care. We are fortunate to have a public that supports our efforts."

Dr. Barger is a mainstay at Contra Costa Health Services (CCHS), of which Contra Costa EMS is a division. He joined CCHS in 1980. In addition to EMS medical director, Dr. Barger has served as assistant EMS medical director and chief of the Regional Medical Center's Emergency Department. He is also a deputy health officer for CCHS.

California EMS Authority Director Dr. Steve Tharratt said Dr. Barger was selected for the award because of his "excellence, motivation and service to EMS."

"Dr. Barger is part of a team of EMS leaders and medical professionals whose mandate is to not only provide medical care to those in need, but also to provide leadership and education to continue to advance the EMS system," Dr. Tharratt said.

Contra Costa EMS Director Art Lathrop said Dr. Barger excels on both the state and local level. "We're proud of Dr. Barger's leadership on the Statewide EMS Scope of Practice Committee, but we're also proud of his leadership in promoting excellence in patient care for people who live in Contra Costa County," he said.

To find out about the latest efforts from Contra Costa EMS, visit

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Press Contact
  • Art Lathrop
  • 925-646-4690