Public Safety Medical has been a participant and task force member of this innovative initiative, developed by the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) and the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC), to improve the health and safety of public safety professionals since its inception in 1997.
Due to the alarming rate of duty-related deaths and premature retirements due to injury, the IAFF (International Association of Fire Fighters) and the IAFC (international Association of Fire Chiefs) decided this issue was too big to not address. In 1996. they along with ten pairs of locals unions and their departments, as well as select experienced physician groups (including Public Safety Medical) joined together to form the Fire Service Joint Labor Management Wellness-Fitness Task Force. Their goal was to design a mandatory, non-punitive, and positive program that would help keep firefighters fit and healthy throughout their fire service career.
Out of this collaboration came the WFI (Wellness-Fitness Initiative) in 1997. Designed to be comprehensive yet cost effective, it realized great success in accomplishing its goals. In fact, the NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) adopted the standards as part of their 1582 Standard. Additionally, the NFFF (National Fallen Firefighters Foundation) advocates for this program.
For more information on the Wellness-Fitness Initiative, click here