EMT Intermediate Courses and Classes Overview

Jan 02, 2019

Emergency medical technicians (EMTs) with EMT-Basic certification are eligible to take EMT-Intermediate (EMT-I) courses. These courses are available to be taken alone or as part of a certificate program.

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Essential Information

Intermediate-level EMT courses are offered by 2-year colleges and medical schools. Although they are less common, some certificate programs are available and consist of several courses that may later be applied toward a paramedic degree program. The content of an EMT-I course is based on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's National Standard Curriculum, but course content conforms to individual state licensing requirements. Topics usually include patient assessment, treatment of shock and emergency procedures. Programs and courses include significant classroom instruction, clinical practice and a field internship. In addition to state licensure, graduates can pursue EMT-I certification from the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT). Both a multiple-choice exam and a hands-on exam are required. Here are a few common concepts taught in EMT intermediate courses:

  • Blood sugar determination
  • Trauma emergencies
  • CPR for infants, children and adults
  • Common injuries
  • Illnesses
  • Bleeding control

List of Common Courses

EMT-I Introduction Course

In this introductory course, EMTs with a current EMT-Basic credential learn the additional responsibilities of becoming an EMT-I. Students review related vocabulary, legal issues associated with emergency medical care and emergency communication systems.

Patient Assessment Course

This second class in an intermediate EMT program includes instruction on patient assessment procedures. EMT-I students learn to quickly examine patients to determine if the patient is breathing or in shock, as well as what injuries the patient has sustained. Additional topics include recording a summary of the patient's medical history and anatomy.

Airway and Breathing Course

EMTs are often called to emergencies where a patient is having trouble breathing or not breathing at all. This course concentrates on techniques for maintaining patient breathing by opening airways and restoring breathing using endotracheal intubation - opening the windpipe and inserting a plastic tube. Common causes of breathing emergencies are discussed.

Recognizing and Treating Shock Course

Students learn to quickly recognize traumatic injury and to stabilize patients in shock. Instructors demonstrate stabilization techniques, such as the use of a pneumatic anti-shock garment, which compresses the body to increase blood flow in a patient. Students study the causes associated with different types of shock, such as anaphylactic shock (which is caused by allergic reactions), cardiogenic shock (which is typically caused by a heart attack) and neurogenic shock (which is caused by injuries to the nervous system). Intravenous therapy (IV) is taught for treating hemorrhagic shock, shock caused by rapid blood loss.

EMT-Intermediate Practicum Course

EMT-I students spend time working in the hospital and in the field to develop advanced skills in areas including patient assessment, administering IVs and alleviating airway restriction using intubation. Students experience the emergency room, anesthesia department and obstetrics department while working in the hospital. Practical education in the field may consist of working with an ambulance team providing advanced pre-hospital care. After completing the practicum, students are eligible to take the EMT-I certification exam.

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