Medical Rescue Team South Authority (MRTSA) is known across western Pennsylvania for its stellar service and new Chief Josh Worth wants to take that reputation nationwide.
Worth, 30, who started at MRTSA in mid-May, has big dreams for the rescue service. He wants to widen its visibility in the community and push for change in the EMS sphere.
“As we progress over the next couple of years, that’s going to be the push—for us to be more visible but also to make us one of the best EMS agencies in the country,” he said. “I want to take us out of the comfort zone. I want people from all over the country to want to come work here. I want that kind of pride in the service.”
Worth, who grew up with a keen interest in public safety, joined Monroeville Fire Department right after high school as a way to fill the free time he had during the summer. But he quickly became hooked. He liked medicine and helping people, and working in emergency medicine brought it all together. He became an EMT in Monroeville, then a paramedic in Plum. He received his bachelor’s in emergency medical services administration from Columbia Southern University and is working towards a master’s in public health, with a focus on public health policy, from George Washington University.
While working as a medic, he recognized challenges in the EMS system that needed fixing. He came up against a lot of “that’s the way we’ve always done it,” and he wanted to see the service grow and be more progressive.
“I think instead of trying to fit our service around the way that the system was designed, I think we need to be the change that we want to see in EMS,” he said. “That got me into the management side of things.”
Worth took a role as education director for Susquehanna Valley EMS in Lancaster County before assuming the chief position at Foxwall EMS in Fox Chapel, where he served from 2017 to 2020. He went on to work as the director of operations at Monongalia County EMS in West Virginia before coming to MRTSA. Here, he is in charge of scheduling, policies and procedures of incident response, and serves in numerous other managerial roles.
MRTSA went through a deliberately lengthy search process for its new chief, said interim Executive Director John Trant. Worth stood out for his “drive for excellence and willingness to push for change,” Trant said.
Worth is planning a big push to make MRTSA better known to the residents in the six communities that it serves. So, you’ll probably see him out and about in the community. “EMS is evolving and changing and I think what we need to do better is we need better awareness. We need better public outreach. We need to be more visible to the community and we really need the community to better understand what we do,” he said.
Worth lives in the eastern suburbs with his wife, Meagan, and children Josh Jr., 8, and Daphne, 7. The family plans to move to one of MRTSA’s six communities and looks forward to becoming a part of the area.