Eastern Kentucky paramedic honored as ‘Community Star’ on National Rural Health Day

Published: Nov. 18, 2021 at 10:22 AM EST
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HAZARD, Ky. (WYMT) - One Eastern Kentucky first responder has earned a national award for her dedication to her home community and the region in general.

Shelia Wise, a paramedic and training major at Estill County EMS in Irvine, was recognized Thursday by the National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health (NOSORH) as a “Community Star”.

Wise started her EMS career back in the 1990s and uses her talents to educate not only fellow medical professionals but other community members on a variety of topics.

Each Community Star was nominated for recognition by someone familiar with their rural health work and contributions. A selection committee reviewed and evaluated nominations and made recommendations on which stories to include in this year’s publication.

“I can tell you I am so honored to have received this recognition. I don’t feel that I do anything special,” Shelia Wise said in a news release. “I just do a job that I love in a community that I grew up in, where I know most everyone. A lot of my patients have watched me grow up. So, when I am working in this community, I am caring for not just patients — but truly my friends and family.”

The Community Stars initiative, which started in 2015, shines a spotlight each year on individuals and organizations who work every day to close gaps, open doors, address challenges and develop solutions through collaboration, education, innovation and communication.

Past nominees have included physicians, nurses, allied health providers, hospital administrators, board members, volunteers, community health workers and first responders.

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