Emergency medical technicians are certified health professions who respond and provide care wherever there's a medical emergency. EMT training through classes or a certificate program is a necessity when pursuing this career, and there are three levels of EMT certification -- basic, intermediate and paramedic. In addition to the training classes, national EMT certification is required as well.
Emergency medical technicians (EMTs) are healthcare professionals who provide care at any scene where immediate medical attention is required. EMTs are certified at three levels: basic, intermediate and paramedic. Persons interested in becoming an EMT-Intermediate must first be certified at the basic level. Intermediate training may be presented as independent courses, a series of classes or certificate programs. All EMTs must earn national certification.
|Required Education||EMT-Intermediate training program; some programs result in certificates|
|Other Requirements||National certification from the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT); some states require additional licensing|
|Projected Job Growth (2014-2024)||24% for all EMTs and paramedics*|
|Median Salary (May 2015)||$31,980 for all EMTs and paramedics*|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
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Educational Requirements to Become an EMT-Intermediate
EMT-Intermediates are medical technicians who have completed an EMT-Intermediate training program and have been licensed by their respective state. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the specific training requirements for intermediate EMT-Intermediates vary by state, although the national standard curriculum may involve between 30 and 350 training hours for formal programs (www.bls.gov). The BLS also noted that jobs for EMTs and paramedics are expected to experience a growth of 24% from 2014-2024. These professionals' median annual salary was $31,980, as of May 2015.
Most formal programs require either a high school diploma or successful completion of the General Educational Development (GED) test. Applicants must also have completed an approved National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT) EMT-Basic level training program (www.nremt.org). As such, EMT-Intermediate applicants must also hold a current cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) credential.
Some programs may require applicants to complete additional testing, such as a mathematics test, while others may mandate that applicants have been vaccinated for certain communicable diseases, such as Hepatitis B. Candidates may consider contacting their prospective programs to check eligibility requirements.
Classes for EMT-Intermediate students focus on providing life support at the scene of an accident or other emergency. Students are taught to assess the situation, recognize a patient's condition and provide the appropriate care. Accordingly, these professionals receive instruction on how to control patient bleeding, manage patients who are in shock and provide additional trauma support. Courses also cover defibrillation and spinal immobilization techniques, as well as administering medication.
EMT-Intermediate students must complete clinical applications that typically include participating in ambulance rotations and working in hospital emergency departments. During these courses, students are assessed on their skill levels and further prepared for the EMT-Intermediate 1985 and EMT-Intermediate 1999 certification exams.
EMTs must hold basic EMT certification before enrolling in an EMT-Intermediate level certification program. These programs include classroom work as well as hands-on experience. The job market for EMTs is expected to grow at a high rate over the next few years; the median salary in 2015 was $31,980.