EMT-Paramedic License and Credential Information

Paramedics are often the first to respond to pre-hospital emergency situations, and they primarily work on ambulances and occasionally in an emergency room. To learn more about licensing and credentialing for these professionals, along with education requirements and job prospects, read on.

Paramedic Licensing and Credentialing

In order to become a licensed paramedic, individuals typically must complete a state-approved paramedic training program and pass a licensing exam. In some states, successful completion of the paramedic certification exam offered by the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians examination (NREMT) leads to licensure, while other states have their own licensing examinations.

In most cases, paramedics need to renew their licenses every two years after taking the NREMT or state examination. This usually entails completion of continuing education classes.

Education Requirements

EMT-P training is primarly available through certificate and associate's degree programs. Students in these programs learn how to assess patients, perform endotracheal intubation, apply splints, and other lifesaving techniques. Clinical fieldwork is a critical component of paramedic training, and students often take part in ambulance ride-alongs with licensed paramedics.


Students typically need to complete EMT-B or EMT-I training first before enrolling in an EMT-P program. Some associate's programs include both EMT-B and paramedic training, but many paramedic certificate or associate's programs require EMT-B certification prior to enrollment. Additional prerequisites often include a criminal background check, drug screening and placement testing.

Career Information

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that the average hourly wage for EMTs and paramedics was approximately $16.77 as recently as May 2013. The number of employed EMTs and paramedics was expected to increase 23% from 2012-2022, which is considerably faster than the national average of 11% for all occupations.

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