How to Become An EMT in the U.S.

How to Become An EMT in the U.S.

An Emergency Medical Technician or a paramedic is an emergency responder who provides emergency medical care to both ill and injured. Since the job role of an EMT is a lot than just being an ambulance driver or attendant, it receives more competition. If you too want to get into this healthcare field and want to know how to become an EMT in the U.S., this guide is just for you.

For other healthcare career guides, also read:

How to Become a Physical Assistant

What is an EMT?

EMT stands for Emergency Medical Technician. An EMT /paramedical agent is a trainee, who attends to emergency calls such as road accidents, fire mishaps, and other personal injuries. It would help if you did not confuse EMTs with a paramedic as they are not the same even though after a certain stage and level of training EMTs become paramedics. 

EMT’s are the primary mode of contact when there is an emergency. They are the people who attend to the ill and injured person by driving an ambulance with a paramedic in it. Although paramedics have more medical training and knowledge than an EMT’s, they still work together on emergency cases. EMT’s also clean and sterilizes the inside of the ambulance and stock up emergency supplies.

EMT’s, paramedics, and emergency medical service (EMS) professionals seek training and qualification. They are proud of the fact that they and paramedics are the first responders to emergency calls. EMT’s will always be available in any hospital in any country.

People are rest assured that if they get held by a mishap or a car accident, they can always depend on EMT’s and paramedics. These professionals will help them to reach them on time and help them with initial medical procedures until moving to a hospital.

3 Different Levels of EMT’s

Due to the increase in population, there has also been an increase in healthcare professionals (doctors, nurses, etc.). But, in cases of emergencies, there has been a shortage of qualified individuals attending to them hence the creation of EMTs took shape. To become an EMT, you have three main levels that can set your professional 

In each state of the U.S, there are various levels of EMTs; but, the basic three are:-

EMT First Responder/Basic (EMT-B)

Is the first level amongst the EMTs. Usually, an EMT first responder works in association with the ambulance or fire squad. Their main job is to give temporary care to an injured or ill person until more qualified help arrives. EMT first responders undergo training of 40 to 43 hours, which covers medical topics. These include CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation), fractures, control bleeding, oxygen administration and emergency childbirth.

EMT Intermediate (EMT-I)

EMT-I has wider responsibilities than EMT-B’s and undergoes more in-depth training of 130 hours. They are also taught CPR, control of bleeding, how to work on fractures, childbirth and oxygen administration. Still, they get to use the automated external defibrillator, immobilizing the spine and providing medications. 

EMT Paramedics (EMT-P)

All EMTs go back to college to study further to become paramedics. They complete an associate’s degree, which takes two years to complete. Get advanced skills than EMTs, such as interpretation and monitoring of cardio rhythm. They can administer drugs, perform Intravenous medication, open a patient’s airway, etc.

For other healthcare career guides, also read:

How to Become a Doctor

How Much do EMTs Earn?

An EMTs or a paramedic’s job is a medical facility such as places of road accidents, fire mishaps, or other natural calamities. Their level of training defines an EMTs job.

An EMTs salary depends on the level of training they receive, where they work, and under whom they work. Let’s take a look at a few examples:

If an EMT is a fresher with no prior experience, they will earn a salary of $20,000 to $35,000 per year. For one to four years of experience, they will earn about $23,000 to $41,000. If they have five to nine years of experience, they will earn about $40,000 to $50,000 per year. Beyond ten years of experience, they will earn about $60,000 per year.

How to Become an EMT

If you have the compassion to save lives when in emergencies, then becoming an EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) is the right job for you. Once you decide to become an EMT, then you need to know how you will seek training in emergency care and ambulance services. Since EMTs will be the first to reach an emergency scene that could be of various types including:-

Emergency childbirth, wounds by gunshots, heart attacks, drowning, and road accidents.

You must have the alertness and the mindset to perform under any circumstances even when the situation is gruesome. You can arrive at the emergency scene and test the situation. If required transfer individuals who get to hospitals where they would get further medical help. Many find doing this kind of a job as a noble act of returning something to life and a noble way of earning money.

Educational Qualifications to Become An EMT

To become an EMT, you must complete high school or equal. Then you must join an EMT training course at your community college or other colleges. Ensure the program seeking accreditation from the Committee on Accreditation of Educational Programs. This program will take three months to complete and is the first level in EMT, which is also known as EMT basic (EMT-B). Now you must sit for a certification exam by NREMT (National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians) to be a certified EMT basic. There is an end for the certification so you might have re-certified after a year or two. Furthermore, every state has its own rule and regulations on licensing so you might want to find out what are the rules in your state.

It is illegal to practice as an EMT without proper certification or license. Besides, without a certification, your duties would not be easy to perform. It is advisable to continue your training and get certified as EMT-Intermediate and EMT-Paramedics. Remember, the higher the training, the more emergency care you can provide to those who get injured or ill. Now that you seek certification and get licensed, you can work for a hospital, or at the fire department, or work at an ambulance service. People hire and pay EMT’s or paramedics based on the level of training they underwent, so make sure you have the highest form of training.

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