Welcome
To the First Responder Center for Excellence

At the FRCE, we’re dedicated to protecting the lives and livelihoods of first responders, nationwide. Our education and research initiatives constantly shed new light on challenges to the health, safety and well‑being of firefighters, EMS personnel and other first responders. It’s all with the goal of reducing line‑of‑duty injuries and deaths as well as occupational illnesses.

Helping You Stay on the Front Lines, Safely Serving the Public

First responders face more than emergencies every day. Carcinogens on the scene pose deadly dangers. Stress, substance abuse and depression impact mental health. Strength and stamina are pushed to the limits. And chronic conditions such as diabetes and heart and lung disease significantly reduce a first responder’s ability to respond quickly, protect property and save lives—including their own. The FRCE is here to make you aware of these life-threatening issues. We’ll help screen for, prevent or address them, and get you back to the job you love.

About Us

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Behavioral Health

Recognizing emerging or existing mental health issues is critical to keeping first responders positively focused and in control.

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Cancer

Learn about exposure to carcinogens and toxic chemicals, how they’re absorbed through the skin and lungs, and more.

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Cardiac

Over the last decade, more than half of on-duty volunteer firefighter deaths were from heart attacks. Discover what you can do to reduce your risk.

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Health & Wellness

A healthy diet and exercise are important on and off the job. See how they help strengthen your immune system, reduce stress and boost energy levels.

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Physicals

The NFPA 1582 annual physical is critical to determining your physical and mental fitness to do your job. Learn its parameters, what they identify and how to prepare to take it.

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Training Resources

Stress First Aid (SFA) training courses can help identify and address post‑traumatic stress disorder, substance abuse and depression, which happen frequently among active firefighters and EMS personnel. With regular monitoring and prompt intervention, healing can begin, and confidence, mental acuity and sense of purpose can be restored.

Available Courses

Stress First Aid for Awareness (90 minute)
Stress First Aid—Full Course (two day)
Stress First Aid for Leadership (90 minute)

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Resources

Behavioral Health Research
Towards an emotional‚ stress test‚: a reliable, non-subjective cognitive measure of anxious responding
2017 | Scientific Reports

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Behavioral Health Policies/Procedures
Trauma Screening Questionaire
| NFFF

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Behavioral Health Research
To debrief or not to debrief our heroes: that is the question
2010 | Clinical Psychology & Psychotherapy

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