Founded in 1993, the North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System's Center for Emergency Medical Services (CEMS) is the largest hospital-based ambulance service in the New York Metropolitan area and is one of the largest in the United States.
The CEMS has unrestricted operating authority to work in the 2,200 square miles of New York City, Nassau and Suffolk Counties. Home to the Regional Emergency Management Training Center, the CEMS employs more than 300 emergency medical technicians and paramedics who operate over 40 response units each day. The CEMS fleet of ambulances transport over 55,000 patients annually.
The Center for Emergency Medical Services was awarded a certificate of full accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation of Ambulance Services (CAAS), making it the first and only ambulance service in the New York metropolitan area to receive this distinction and one of six in the entire state of New York.
When first accredited, the North Shore–LIJ Center for EMS was only the 69th agency in the United States to receive this recognition. The commission defines a standard for the medical transportation industry that is at a higher caliber than typically required for state licensing. The commission looks at all aspects of a service's operation, from the chain of command to inter-agency relations,
human resources and clinical quality.