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Researcher from Drexel University Named to Fire Service Data Organization Board of Directors

Jennifer Taylor, PHD, MPH, CPPS, director of the Center for Firefighter Injury Research and Safety Trends (FIRST) in the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health at Drexel University, has been named to the International Public Safety Data Institute (IPSDI) Board of Directors. The FIRST Center is a research and education enterprise organized to support the United States fire and rescue service through objective data collection and analysis. Two of FIRST's main projects, the Fire Service Organizational Culture of Safety (FOCUS) survey and the Injury Data Evaluation and Analysis (IDEA) portfolio, directly involve data collection within the fire and rescue service in an effort to combat the prevalence of occupational injury to first responders.

FOCUS, which was developed with funding from the US Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) Assistance to Firefighters grant program (AFG), measures organizational outcomes within a fire department, including management commitment, supervisor support, burnout, job satisfaction, and engagement. By collecting data on these five outcomes, FOCUS quantifies their impact on a fire department's injury rate.

IDEA grants--also funded by FEMA--built firefighter data systems at state and local levels and determined the minimum data elements necessary to conduct public health surveillance of non-fatal firefighter injuries in the US.

The IPSDI serves as the leading research, development, and training organization focused on using data science to provide analytical tools and information to the public safety sector. IPSDI helps fire departments gather, organize, and translate big data to improve how they evaluate risks, deploy resources, and respond to fire and other emergencies.

One of the most important tools that IPSDI makes available to fire departments is the National Fire Operations Reporting System (NFORS) Analytics Module. A major part of the NFORS data system is the NFORS Exposure Tracker. The Tracker, which was funded through FEMA AFG and the Ramsey Social Justice Foundation, is a resource for firefighters and paramedics who are on the front lines protecting their communities. 

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