Medical

The Austin Public Safety Wellness Center offers a variety of services available to public safety personnel. We provide annual medical testing (spirometry, hearing, vision, EKG/Stress, and tuberculosis screening) reviewed by the medical director, Dr. Paul Parrish. Other services include lab review, case management, vaccination programs, exposure management, and health interventions.

Case Management

For personnel with certain medical diseases, the case is closely followed by the medical team in order to ensure that the personnel can complete job duties in the field.

EKG/Stress Test

The cardiac stress test or "the submaximal treadmill evaluation" is used to evaluate aerobic capacity.  For incumbent firefighters, aerobic capacity is measured annually as part of the mandatory wellness exam.  The EKG is used as a screening tool for cardiac disease and disorders beginning at 40 years old incumbent firefighters, and is also conducted immediately before all cardiac stress tests.  For cadets, the cardiac stress test is used to evaluate aerobic capacity and screen for cardiac disease.  To be considered for entrance into the Training Academy, a minimum aerobic capacity of 12 Metabolic Equivalent Tasks (METS) is required.

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Treadmill Evaluation

Hearing Exam

Public safety employees are at risk for occupational hearing loss due to possible long-term exposure to loud noises. Audiometry is a portion of the medical exam conducted during pre-employment to establish a baseline for candidates, as well as annually for incumbents as a screening tool to identify hearing loss.  In the event a member needs hearing aids, the screening records are utilized for workers' compensation purposes.

Prior to your hearing exam, please Submit Records Request.

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Hearing Exams

Physician Exam

The occupational health physician assesses medical and fitness exam during results blood work, and works with employees to achieve optimal health.  Based on this assessment, he/she may refer personnel to needed resources.  In the hiring process, he/she evaluates whether the candidate is medically cleared to perform job tasks for firefighting according to National Fire Protection Association standards.

Spirometry

Spirometry testing is administered as a portion of the medical exam during pre-employment for candidates, as well as annually for incumbents.  Spirometry tests assess specific factors of lung function for occupational safety.  They are continued on an annual basis to allow the occupational health physician to screen for lung disease.

This video is a demonstration of the test.  A member takes a deep breath, creates a tight seal on the mouthpiece, breathes out forcefully, and keeps breathing until the examiner tells him/her to stop; each member needs to take three to eight breaths.  The test will indicate when the examiner should stop, and then the physician will review the results. 

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Spirometry

Vaccines

All personnel will have their vaccinations updated per the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention recommendations for healthcare providers.  This includes Hep A, Hep B, MMR, and TDAP.  Each year, flu vaccines will  also be provided for personnel.

Request: Vaccine Records

The following are vaccine information sheets giving general information about those offered:

Vision Exam

Vision screening is administered as a portion of the medical exam, both pre-employment for candidates, as well as annually for incumbents. During the hiring process, they are conducted to screen for specific visual problems which may impact certain duties. These screenings are continued on an annual basis to allow the occupational health physician to identify changes in visual function or ocular health.

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Vision Exam

Vitals

Blood pressure, height, and weight are measured.

Services

Cadet screening, annual testing, light duty, exit exam

Schedule an appointment
(512) 974-0200

Contacts

Paul Parrish

Medical Director

Paul Parrish
Phone: (512) 974-0208
Office:
517 S Pleasant Valley

As the Wellness Program Medical Director since 2005.  Dr. Parrish is a board certified occupational physician who earned his medical degree from The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston.  He earned his Master of Public Health degree and completed an occupational medicine residency at Johns Hopkins University.  Paul served in the U.S. Air Force for over 10 years, including an assignment as a Flight Surgeon, before coming to Austin.

Anne Schaak

Registered Nurse

Anne Schaak
Phone: (512) 974-1368
Office:
517 S Pleasant Valley

Christina Hwang

Registered Nurse Lead

Christina Hwang
Phone: (512) 974-0200
Office:
517 S Pleasant Valley

Jenni Garcia

Work Comp Assistant

Jenni Garcia
Phone: (512) 974-2511
Office:
517 S Pleasant Valley

Rocio Hernandez

Work Comp Assistant

Rocio Hernandez
Phone: (512) 974-1310
Office:
517 S Pleasant Valley