What Degree Do You Need to Be an EMT?

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What Degree Do You Need to Be an EMT?

Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) are the most prevalent type of EMS provider. There are various levels of certification for providers in the field of emergency medical services (EMS). Many EMTs go on to receive an Advanced EMT credential or become paramedics after learning the necessary skills to assist in life-threatening situations. EMT training and work experience have also served as stepping stones for many doctors, nurses, and firefighters. Students who become Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) must complete a minimum of 170 hours of training. EMTs are trained to assess patients and determine if they have any life-threatening injuries or illnesses. This could include splinting a patient’s injuries after a car accident, providing life-saving epinephrine to a patient suffering from an allergic reaction, or even doing CPR on a patient in cardiac arrest. Other skills learned by the EMT include oxygen administration, bag valve mask ventilation, baby delivery, and medicine administration. The best tool in an EMT’s toolbox is their assessment skills, which include the ability to swiftly determine if someone is dying. This is the primary focus of EMT schooling. Obtaining the necessary degree is the most crucial criteria for becoming an EMT. Because this career necessitates a varied range of abilities and knowledge, many students opt for a bachelor’s or associate’s degree. Working professionals may benefit from a few additional certificates, but to become an EMT, you must complete a rigorous training program. In addition, in order to practice, all EMS professionals must maintain their credentials, so you’ll need to stay on top of these requirements.

Basic Requirements

You must be an EMT and have at least 6 months of work experience as an EMT to be eligible for a paramedic course. Admission requirements for paramedic programs may vary. Some schools require you to study college-level anatomy and physiology before being admitted, while many others have personal health requirements, such as confirmation of vaccines and a physical exam. To assess your eligibility for admission, schools may need a criminal background check, an admissions interview, or an entrance exam. Each institution has slightly different standards, but the goal is to choose those students who will be successful in the training programme.

What Does an EMT Earn In a Year?

An EMT’s average hourly wage is $18.80, or roughly $39,000 per year. In May 2020, the median yearly wage for EMTs and paramedics was $36,650. Half of the workers in a given occupation earned more than that amount, while the other half earned less. The bottom ten percent made less than $24,650, while the top ten percent made more than $62,150.

What Do EMT’s Do?

A medical worker who provides emergency care outside of or on the way to the hospital is known as an emergency medical technician (EMT). They can provide basic medical and first-aid care until a person can be taken to a hospital or other medical facility for further treatment. Any procedure that breaks the skin is prohibited for EMTs. There are certain exceptions, such as administering an epinephrine shot to someone who is experiencing a severe allergic response. On the other hand, paramedics are frequently called upon to undertake more invasive treatments, such as administering medication through an IV, which is a tube that is inserted into a vein. EMTs work in ambulances, assisting patients in getting to the hospital. They may also collaborate with fire departments and rescue helicopters. Private ambulance services are another option for EMTs.

What Does an EMT’s Job Description Entail?

EMTs and paramedics usually perform the following tasks: Respond to 911 requests for emergency medical help, such as CPR or wound bandaging. Determine a treatment plan based on a patient’s condition. Treat sick or injured patients with first-aid or life-supporting care.

Training and Education

EMTs are usually required to have a high school diploma or a GED. They must also have CPR certification, which may be obtained through an organization like the American Red Cross or a local hospital after a few hours of instruction. After that, students must enroll in an accredited EMT course. These courses normally last between 120 and 150 hours and are completed in less than a year. Students must take the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT) exam after finishing EMT training. Some states require EMTs to take a different test created by the state. EMTs must also complete additional 8-hour training and obtain a specific driver’s license in order to drive an emergency vehicle. EMTs who have completed their certification as an emergency medical technician can continue their education to become advanced EMTs. In some regions, these professionals are known as EMT-intermediates because they can perform more tasks in the field, such as administering IV fluids and drugs. It takes roughly 400 hours to complete advanced EMT training.

Follow These Steps to Become an EMT

This exam assesses your competence to deal with a wide range of emergency situations, including cardiac arrest, hemorrhage control, joint dislocation and bone fracture immobilization, and supplemental oxygen administration. The EMT office in your state should be able to tell you where you can take this test and what you’ll need to pass it.

  • Complete Your Basic Schooling Requirements

Aspiring EMTs must have a high school diploma or a GED certificate to be eligible for this profession. Consider preparing for and taking the GED if you have not completed high school or if you are lacking classes required for a diploma.

  • Get Your CPR Certification

Most EMT schools demand that students have completed CPR training and have a current CPR certification. The American Red Cross, for example, provides both in-person and online CPR training.

  • Finish an EMT Program

To be considered for an EMT employment, you must complete a recognized curriculum. This certification programme, which must be approved by your state, will provide in-depth training in emergency medical techniques and technologies.

  • Pass the Mental Test

The National Registry of Emergency Technicians requires all aspiring EMTs to pass a cognitive examination. This computer-based exam has 70-120 questions on several aspects of emergency medical services that an EMT is required to provide, such as cardiology and resuscitation, breathing and ventilation, and trauma.

  • Get a POassing Grade on the Psychomotor Exam

You must also pass an EMT psychomotor exam conducted by your state’s local training organization or an emergency medical office in addition to the certification course and the cognitive exam.

EMTs’ Proposed Abilities:

To be successful on the job, EMTs must possess a number of critical abilities. They require the capacity to make quick and correct judgments as a primary competence. Because EMTs operate in life-or-death circumstances, being able to make an educated and quick decision can save someone’s life. EMTs should also have the following skills:

  • Communication Skills:

EMTs work with and engage with a variety of people on a daily basis, typically in stressful emergency situations. An EMT’s ability to receive and transmit crucial information, as well as coordinate with medical centers, other medical professionals, and first responders, depends on their ability to communicate effectively and clearly.

  • Compassion:

Compassion allows an EMT to stay present in the moment and assist their patients in feeling better.

  • Physical Stamina and Coordination:

EMTs are frequently called upon to undertake a range of physical duties that necessitate strength, stamina, and coordination.

What Does It Cost To Train As an EMT?

Many healthcare occupations, especially those that require certification, require a year or more of training and can easily cost more than $5,000. EMT training, on the other hand, typically costs $1,000 to $1,750 and takes three months (or less with an accelerated course) to complete.

Testing For Your License As a Paramedic:

The final stage in becoming a paramedic is to pass your state’s license exam. Although it is a difficult exam, there are many excellent study materials available to assist you in passing it. You’ll have more paramedic work prospects with the certification than as a basic EMT, as well as a higher wage and greater responsibilities. You could work in a fire station, a life support helicopter, a hospital, a cruise ship, or a variety of other thrilling locations. While being a paramedic has its challenges, the work itself may be immensely gratifying. Being a paramedic necessitates a level of commitment to the job that is more akin to an avocation than a profession. It isn’t the correct choice for everyone, but for many, it is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

The NREMT Exam:

EMTs can be certified at the national level through the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT). It’s vital to know that in order to obtain NREMT certification; you must complete an approved program and pass the national exam. There are also written and practical components to the national test.

EMT Continuing Education Requirements:

Every two years, EMT certification must be renewed. National certification can be renewed by passing a cognitive examination or completing 40 hours of continuing education classes, while each state may have its own set of criteria.

Academic Requirements:

All paramedics and emergency medical technicians (EMTs) must complete a postsecondary education programme. EMTs are required to be licensed in all states, while the standards differ by state. EMTs typically need between 120 and 150 hours to finish their training. Classes for paramedics are lengthier, ranging from 1,200 to 1,800 hours. EMTs learn how to extricate patients and prepare them for transport, give CPR, give oxygen, administer glucose to diabetic patients, assist people who are having asthma attacks or allergic reactions, Give CPR, Give oxygen, Assist people who are having asthma attacks or allergic responses. Paramedics learn everything that EMTs do, plus more advanced abilities like how to: administer medications, start intravenous lines, provide advanced airway care for patients, resuscitate patients and assist persons who have been in accidents. Anatomy, physiology, cardiology, drugs, and medical procedures may be covered in classes.

Paramedic Accredited Programs:

The National Registry of EMTs (NREMT) requires paramedics to complete an accredited program in order to be eligible for National EMS Certification at the paramedic level. The NREMT is currently used in 44 states as part of the state test procedure for paramedic licensing. Passing the NREMT exam is recognized in four states that accept National EMS Certification as an alternative to state-based certification. Only two states need a state-based examination for paramedics’ initial licensing. Candidates who complete a CAAHEP-accredited program can apply for national EMS certification, which will improve their chances of getting reciprocity in the majority of states.

Where Can EMTs Get Help Dealing with Workplace Stress?

Many EMTs can rely on their employers for assistance when responding to emergency calls. Critical incident stress management (CISM) or critical incident stress debriefing is a service provided by some employers (CISD). After a life-threatening or multiple-casualty occurrence, supervisors employ CISM to help EMTs de-escalate and calm their emotions before the event’s stress takes root in their brains. CISD is also used by management in the event of traumatic or important incidents or accidents, usually within 24 hours of the event. Many employers also provide referrals to mental health providers for counseling or other treatment for trauma and PTSD. To best support EMTs’ health and well-being, management and EMTs must collaborate to create an organizational culture that acknowledges and addresses all types of occupational pressures both inside and outside the stationhouse in a positive, supportive manner. EMTs who don’t have enough support from their bosses or peers can ask their doctors for counseling or other treatments. Because they are affected by the ancillary effects of stress, it is beneficial for families to be included in the healing process. Many EMT families become acquainted both inside and outside of the stationhouse and provide mutual support.


Being an EMT is a wonderful experience and a career choice. You’ll be put in circumstances where you’ll have to rescue people’s lives. An EMT, also known as an EMT-Basic, provides care to patients at the scene of an accident and while transporting them to a hospital by ambulance. EMTs can examine a patient’s status and respond to respiratory, cardiac, and trauma emergencies.

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