Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) or ParamedicsEmergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) or Paramedics are skilled medical workers who respond by ambulance to medical emergencies for the injured and ill.
They are sent to emergencies by specially trained dispatchers who maintain radio contact or patch them through to medical professionals for ongoing instructions.
Following instructions, they examine victims to determine the nature and extent of injury or illness and administer first aid and emergency basic life support (BLS), such as giving oxygen and doing cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
They continue the BLS treatment during transport to hospitals.
They help the emergency room staff do pre-admittance treatment and obtain medical histories.
EMTs are trained on ambulance operations and procedures. They drive emergency vehicles with special communication and medical equipment, check their vehicles daily, and keep them in excellent condition and well stocked with medical supplies.
Advancement to either an EMT-II or EMT-Paramedic requires additional classroom and clinical training hours.
EMT-IIs perform more complex procedures such as inserting intravenous catheters, and administering a limited number of drugs.
Paramedics are the most highly trained workers of the EMT group. They provide all phases of emergency, pre-hospital care, including emergency advanced life support (ALS) treatment at the scene and during the ambulance ride.
- Must be at least 18 years old.
- Successful completion of approved EMT training to obtain EMT State certification.
- Emergency Medical Technician-Paramedic positions require a State license.
- Continuing education every two years to maintain certification or State license.
- Valid California driver's license.
- Desire to help others.
- Good judgment.
- Fingerprint clearance may be required by employer.
- EMTs and Paramedics Median hourly wage: $11.36
- Average annual wage: $28,890
- Estimated number of EMTs and Paramedics in 2002: 13,700
- Estimated number of EMTs and Paramedics in 2012: 18,100
- Estimated annual job openings: 600
Possible Career Paths
Possible Career Paths for Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) and Paramedics include becoming a Fire Fighter Dispatcher, EMT II, Psychiatric Technician and EMT-Paramedic.