Penn State Health operates the Life Lion EMS system throughout south central Pennsylvania. Life Lion EMS is a 24/7 emergency medical service that provides 911 response to the local municipalities and non-emergency transportation for the Penn State Health system. These services include ALS (Advanced Life Support), and BLS (Basic Life Support) care with a team of highly trained Paramedics and Emergency Medical Technicians. A team of 150 people make up Life Lion EMS and respond to calls for assistance from various locations strategically located in the communities we serve. The Milton S. Hershey Medical Center has provided prehospital service to the community for over 25 years and Life Lion EMS proudly serves the local and regional communities:

We're committed to providing easy access to quality, efficient, out-of-hospital care in a professional, compassionate and caring environment.

Non-emergency transportation

Life Lion EMS provides non-emergency transportation services for the Penn State Health System.

To request a transport, please complete the Transport Request Form and submit this via fax machine to the Life Lion communications center at 717-531-0861.


For patients who do not require ambulance/litter transportation, a simpler and more affordable means of transportation is available. A wheelchair patient should be medically stable, require minimal medical intervention or expected treatment.

One individual drives the van, so the patient must be able to sit in a wheelchair unattended. Many insurance companies do not cover wheelchair charges, or might only cover a portion of the charge, thus making payment of the transport the responsibility of the patient.

Basic Life Support (BLS) Ambulance

Patients who require Basic Life Support transportation should be relatively stable, not requiring any form of invasive procedures (IV infusions, intubation, EKG monitoring, etc.). Capped IV ports are permissible for BLS transportation. Patient self-regulated medication pumps are allowed, only if the patient is able to maintain the device.

A BLS crew will consist of a minimum of two certified Emergency Medical Technicians, allowing one EMT to be present in the patient area. This transport will need to be deemed medically necessary by a physician, prior to transportation.

Advanced Life Support (ALS) Ambulance

For patients who require Advanced Life Support inter-facility transports, requiring a higher level of care than a BLS transport. These types of transports would include, but are not limited to, a patient with IV access, medication administration (within the scope of practice for paramedics), EKG monitoring, and or advanced airway and basic ventilator management.

EMT-Paramedics are required to function under a Pennsylvania Department of Health authorized medical command physician. Transports that would exceed a paramedic scope of practice would be triaged and moved to the Critical Care Transport level also provided by the Life Lion system. All transports  need to be deemed medically necessary by a physician, prior to transportation.

Continuing Education and Special Programs

Life Lion Emergency Medical Services

Life Lion Emergency Medical Services presents a monthly continuing education session, free of charge, for all EMS providers. These sessions are held the third Thursday of each month (except holidays) and provides 1.5 hours of Pennsylvania Continuing Education credits for pre-hospital providers.

Monthly topics range from medical updates to informative presentations presented by Penn State Health physicians  and EMS personnel. The monthly session begins at 18:30 EST and is held in Lecture Room T2500 of Hershey Medical Center. Other programs are held in conjunction with Life Lion Critical Care Transport and other departments in the health system, as available. For more information about these sessions, email Donna Fawber-Via at

Life Lion EMS Community Paramedicine Program

Newly added in 2017, the Community Paramedicine program is a unique offering for the patients our health system serves. Specially trained paramedics provide in-home care and follow-up monitoring on patients that have been discharged from the hospital. This team reports their findings back to the primary care team and ensures the transition of care from the hospital to home is smooth for the patient. This helps to reduce, and ultimately prevent readmissions.  

Community Paramedic programs, also called mobile integrated health teams, are a new service that is being offered by many EMS agencies across the country. These programs have shown great success in reducing the impact of disease and illness on various patient populations. Life Lion EMS is one of the first in Central Pennsylvania to offer such a program and uniquely helps to distinguish our EMS service from others.  

EMS Special Operations

Life Lion EMS operates a specially designated physician response unit that deploys emergency medicine physicians into the community on a variety of 911 incidents. This unit carries specialized equipment and medications to any routine or complex 911 scene where a physician might be needed. This specialized unit is the only one in service in central Pennsylvania and one of a handful in the entire Commonwealth of Pa.  

Tactical EMS

For many years, Life Lion EMS has supported the law enforcement community with paramedics trained in tactical medicine. These paramedics are imbedded on the county crisis response team to handle any injured parties. The paramedics have multiple hours of training and certifications in all aspects of tactical medicine and support law enforcement at a variety of incidents.  

Special response team

Life Lion EMS also deploys a unique team that is specially trained to treat and transport patients who might have a highly infectious disease, or might have been exposed to a chemical, biological or nuclear agent. This team drills several times throughout the year and also supports hospital operations at all levels.    

Public service and public relations activities

Life Lion Emergency Medical Services has personnel and equipment available for a variety of public service activities. Crews can be  requested to attend functions to provide services and share information and programs on:

  • Ambulance stand by at community and sporting events (hourly fee charged)
  • Blood pressure screenings and wellness education
  • Car seat education/inspection
  • Ambulance and station tours
  • Education programs for kids and adults alike

Please feel free to contact our office with any request or questions at 717-531-3883, x-6