EMT, Paramedic, and Emergency Medical Responder Career Video

EMT, Paramedic, and Emergency Medical Responder Career Video Transcript

Emergency Medical Responders (also known as emergency medical technicians, EMTs or paramedics) help save lives on a daily basis. This video provides an introduction about the career of Emergency Medical Responders for anyone interested in becoming one.


Emergency Medical Responders are usually the first line of defense for victims of serious and life-threatening incidents. Also known as Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) or paramedics, Emergency Medical Responders must react quickly to a given medical situation and ensure patients are stable while transporting them to medical facilities.


Emergency Medical Responders usually work in pairs. One drives to a medical care facility, while the other cares for the victim and performs any additional medical care in the ambulance. An operator communicates with the Emergency Medical Responders regarding the type of incident and location. Using special equipment and training, Emergency Medical Responders are sometimes able to handle the situation on site without any need for the victim to be rushed to a medical facility.

There are several qualification and training levels associated with Emergency Medical Responders: First Responder, EMT-Basic (or EMT-1), EMT-Intermediate (EMT-2 and -3) and EMT Paramedics (EMT-4) [1]. Some states may name the levels differently, but the divisions are essentially the same. The lowest qualification levels allow the Emergency Medical Responder to perform basic emergency medical care such as CPR. As qualification level increases, Emergency Medical Responders perform more and more complex medical care on victims. Upon reaching the EMT Paramedic (EMT-4) rating, Emergency Medical Responders can use complex medical equipment, administer drugs and perform many other pre-hospital care functions.

Job Skills and Duties

Physical strength and mental and emotional stability are prerequisites for a career as an Emergency Medical Responder. They are often required to lift patients, which requires bending and load bearing activity. In addition, they are exposed to unsettling sights and life-or-death situations, which can drain on people's mental well being and emotions. In addition, Emergency Medical Responders work in all outdoor conditions, like rain, sleet and snow.

Training Required

Certification is required in all 50 states to become an Emergency Medical Responder; though, requirements may vary state to state [2]. In addition, certification must be maintained by registration every two years. To register, you must be currently working as an Emergency Medical Responder and you must fulfill continuing education requirements. Some training programs culminate in an associate degree along with EMT training. Most training programs are progressive starting with the lowest level of certification and moving up to the highest. Training can be obtained at vocational and technical schools as well as junior and community colleges.

Prominent Jobs

Emergency Medical Responders work for hospitals, private ambulance services and local government positions, including fire departments and public ambulance services. With enough education or experience, these workers can also become emergency service supervisors, managers, directors or even executive directors. Other occupations include dispatchers, physician assistants, instructors and registered nurses[3].


Working as an Emergency Medical Responder can be an exciting and very rewarding career. Check with your state and local schools to find more information about training and education in your area.


[#1] The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), www.bls.gov

[#2] The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), www.bls.gov

[#3] The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), www.bls.gov

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