It is Public Safety Telecommunications Week...and our Someone 2 Know knows how important the work is. Adam Heinz oversees some of our region’s first- first responders - the men and women who answer our calls during an emergency at REMSA.

We got a chance to watch him at work at headquarters in Reno.

Calm, clear and genuinely concerned, Heinz has been with REMSA for more than 17 years and says he has always had a passion for patients, "I mean, every single year when I was a kid, for Halloween, I was a doctor,” he remembers fondly. “Seeing my grandmother who was in medicine, kinda watching her and knowing I wanted to help people."

Adam's original plan was to be a doctor, but as he was preparing for medical school:

"They had an EMT course at TMCC and so I said, 'let me test it, let me see’, and you know it just kinda grew on me.”

As the Director of the Clinical Communications, Adam interacts with callers on the phone and, if out in the ambulance, with patients in person.

"It may be my fifth call that I've seen or maybe the 100th time that I've run on somebody with chest pain, or the fifth delivery but it may be their first and they're scared, they don't know what to expect,” says Heinz.

The telecommunications team meets regularly to review recent calls, ensuring dispatchers are providing the needed over-the-phone-instructions until paramedics arrive.

Adam also oversees the clinical care provided in the field. REMSA ground crews include a fleet of 45 ambulances staffed with paramedics and advance EMT. Additionally, workshops help train clinical staff in everything from the basics to new technology that can aid in a medical emergency.

With nearly 20 years on the job, Adam has seen a lot of trauma and he appreciates the impact he's able to make. "Working with the team that I get to work with, the privilege of working with as well as the employees that I get to support, I mean, that's what motivates me."

And on this Telecommunications Week, we honor and thank all the men and women who literally answer the call - in times of emergency.