An interview with Retired Broward County Operations Chief Todd LeDuc, discussing first responder health, wellness and survival.
Length: 63 minutes
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The fire service continues to be plagued by occupational health risks that have been directly related to the rigors of firefighting. The author has written about and published on these extensively terming it the three-legged stool. The three legs of the stool are fire service cardiovascular deaths and disability, occupational cancer threats and behavioral health disorders including suicide.
Sadly, all three of these occupational risks can be minimized but tare often not through annual early detection exams. The notion of situational awareness is key to fire ground survival and that same concept of situational awareness of our health risk status is paramount to assuring survival. We know early detection is a key factor in better survival outcomes.
Yet, many firefighters are still not receiving annual wellness exams or ones that are specific to the unique health risks they face as firefighters.
Chief LeDuc began his emergency medical services training in Lowell, MA. in 1986 and completed his paramedic training at Northeastern University in Boston, MA. He served with the Broward County, FL Fire-Rescue service for the past 29 1/2 years, retiring as the Executive Assistant Fire Chief.
He served as Chief of EMS and Operations Chief in Broward County, which is the Nation’s 17th most populated county in America with 1.9 million residents. Broward County is the largest dual accredited fire department in the country.
Chief LeDuc recently joined Life Scan Wellness Centers as their Chief Strategy Officer. Life Scan Wellness provides 40,000 annual NFPA public safety physicals annually in 25 States. He has a master’s degree in executive fire service leadership and is credentialed as a Chief Fire Officer and Certified Emergency Manager. He also holds Fellow status in the Institute of Fire Engineers.
Chief LeDuc has conducted numerous department evaluations, strategic and master plans, accreditation site visits, consolidation feasibility studies and management efficiency reviews over the last twenty-five years internationally. He is a peer reviewer with the Center for Public Safety Excellence for both professional credentialing and agency accreditation.
He has published and lectured frequently on fire based EMS and firefighter health and safety issues. He has served as the Charter President for the National EMS Management Association and is currently the elected Secretary of the International Association of Fire Chief’s Safety, Health & Survival Section. He is a reviewer and editorial board member for numerous EMS and fire service publications. He is editor of the recently released Penn Well book, Surviving the Fire Service.
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