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True EMS Stories

The Return of Marvel’s The Vitals

We teamed up with Marvel once again to bring to life true heroic stories from the front lines of the pandemic in the form of a Marvel comic. This time, celebrating our EMS heroes.  

The Vitals continue their battle on the front lines of the Coronavirus pandemic

EMS providers don’t have superhuman strength or the ability to read minds. Nor are they invincible to the dangers of today’s greatest enemy—COVID-19. However, what they lack in superpowers, they more than make up for in courage and sacrifice. Because when disaster strikes, it’s EMS providers who are the first to strike back. And the last ones to give up on those in need. They spend their days in the trenches, fighting the injustice of millions of innocent lives lost. All at the risk of their own.

So, we thought, what better time to recognize the enduring commitment of our EMS workforce than during National EMS Week? And what better way to shine a light on their incredible acts of heroism than through the pages of a comic book.

EMT talking to patient in helicopter EMTs driving an ambulance in snow
Helicopter taking off in snow EMT shedding a tear

Real EMS. Real Stories. Real Heroes.

Behind every great hero is a story worth telling. So we set out to collect real-life stories from real EMS providers all across the AHN network. And received countless submissions from those who had witnessed firsthand these everyday heroes in action.

Now, to tell these larger-than-life stories, it would take the biggest name in comics to do it justice. So we teamed up with Marvel Comics who took these stories and did what they do best—gave them the superhero treatment. And before long, The Vitals — True EMS Stories was born. Discover for yourself what makes our EMS workers worthy of being immortalized in the pages of a comic book.

Reuniting patients with their heroes

No one is more aware of the heroic nature of these frontline workers than the ones whose lives have been directly impacted by them. But rarely are these patients given the chance to share their gratitude to their masked hero, let alone see them again. That is, until we stepped in and reunited patients with the EMS provider who came to their aid when their life was on the line. And captured the touching but powerful moment of the patients unveiling the Marvel comic to them for the very first time.


EMS Pledge and Prehospital Care Services

Just as Super Heroes pledge to fight for justice, we at Allegheny Health Network pledge to remain a considerate and dependable partner to our EMS providers each and every step of the way. From pre-arrival to arrival to after-patient transfer, you’ll receive the utmost respect and attentiveness from our hospital staff members. After all, a hero deserves a hero’s welcome.

Our pledge includes pre-arrival communications for prompt access to a medical command physician, the treatment of respect by our highly trained medical professionals upon arrival, and an area dedicated to our heroes—our valued EMS partners.


The Vitals. True EMS Stories

A comic book created by Marvel. Inspired by

the real stories of EMS providers.

Meet The Vitals – True Nurse Stories

Prior to the release of this EMS-inspired Marvel comic, it was nurses who were first welcomed into the Marvel Universe in the first volume of The Vitals—True Nurse Stories. Which told the true tales of eight Allegheny Health Network nurses working tirelessly and courageously on the front lines of the pandemic.

Nurses hurrying to enter an operating room Nurse providing care to an elderly patient

The Marvel comic made its debut just in time for 2020—the year the World Health Organization designated as the Year of the Nurse. It went on to garner national press and international attention. And was Marvel’s most popular digital comic book of the year having only been out for the month of December. Not to mention, a copy was requested by The Smithsonian for permanent collection.

While intended to honor nurses specifically, The Vitals would become a larger symbol of the perseverance of frontline workers during the pandemic. And would even help boost nursing recruitment efforts to pave the way for our future heroes.

Tell a hero thank you

Help us shine a spotlight on our EMS heroes by sharing The Vitals – True EMS Stories with friends and family on your own social channels. And be sure to tag an EMS professional in your life as way of letting them know they’re your hero.

Lastly, we’d like to give an extra special thank you to the EMS providers within Allegheny Health Network. Your heroism and commitment to saving others is an inspiration to all.

Our EMS Pledge

As an EMS provider, you rely on our hospitals. Which is why we’re committed to providing you with the very best experience when visiting our facilities.