Being an EMT and Paramedic means being able to respond urgently to various medical issues. Whether dealing with automobile accidents or cardiac arrest, EMT’s and Paramedics are careers imperative to emergency care. Assessing current conditions, understanding and revealing pre-existing conditions as well as conforming to strict medical guidelines and criteria are just some of the many job requirements and tasks completed by the professionals.
Once EMT’s and Paramedics arrive on an emergency scene, which they often arrive at in the company of other emergency responders, like police, EMT’s and Paramedics work with imperative equipment that requires extensive training and know-how and is often used to save lives and reaffirm the health of those involved in an emergency situation. Important equipment can be used to move patients as well as bring them to a healthier place. But if used incorrectly or with any type of flawed action, the extensive equipment used by EMT’s and Paramedics can be dangerous to victims and the professionals using them.
EMT Paramedic Schools By State
While there are an array of important duties that EMT’s and Paramedics complete, the specific tasks required can be bases largely on the level of certification that the professional has gained and the education level obtained. With five levels of certification available, the type achieved can transform duties from being more or less responsible for victims, equipment and other factors as well as fellow employees.
Requirements, Experience and Education
With five levels of certification, a basic EMT or First Responder are often the emergency responder that cares for victims at the actual scene of an accident or issue. In addition to caring for victims at the actual scene, this level of certification would also require their care during transport to a hospital or medical facility.
An EMT Intermediate has more training, resulting in a higher level of certification and greater responsibility. On the other hand, a Paramedic has more training than all of the other levels of certification, allowing them to administer medication, EKG’s and other complicated medical equipment. Usually, Paramedics complete more of the actions surrounding care prior to arriving at a hospital for more serious emergency situations.
In order to even begin training to become an EMT or Paramedic, students must have earned a high school diploma. Training is completed within a specific EMT and Paramedic training program, including various courses training and teaching elements of the career ranging from equipment use to anatomy to dealing with emergency situations, sicknesses, injuries and accidents. After attending classes and training EMT’s and Paramedics must pass an exam prior to beginning their career. EMT’s and Paramedics must also gain licenses in the state in which they will be employed within. Different states have different requirements for the licenses they offer within their location.
In addition to having the training and know-how, EMT’s and Paramedics must also be able to physically be able to handle the lifting and physical elements required of the job.
Job Environment and Work Setting
Professionals seeking a career as an EMT or Paramedic should not expect a cushy desk position. Instead, EMT’s and Paramedics work within all different types of weather, environments and throughout various times of the day. Positions can be high risk, and sometimes dangerous depending on the emergency situation. A typical forty hour work week required of other career people is not often typical for EMT’s and Paramedics. Work week lengths and hours can vary as can the time of day in which shifts are schedule, as emergency situations occur at all hours of the day, weekday and weekends.
Additionally, the profession can be stressful as workers come upon situations they may be harder than others to deal with. Injuries and accidents and even death are some of the aspects that accompany the career of being an EMT or Paramedic.
Advancement and Outlook
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, of the U.S. Labor Department, the job outlook for EMT’s and Paramedics is about average and should remain steady because of increasing health care needs, especially within cities and for private emergency companies. Job growth, according to the Bureau is expected to climb eight percent before 2018, highlighting stability within the career.*
*According to the BLS, http://www.bls.gov/oco/
While a professional within the field may be within a current certification, climbing the ladder of level can result easily and steadily with additional training required of higher levels of certification. Supervisory positions are also available for those with increasing levels of education, experience and certification. Opportunities for teaching and instruction of those seeking a career as an EMT or Paramedic is also available for those with experience as they advance through the various levels of the career.
Compensation and Salary
Despite the varying compensation dependent on the location in which one is employed as well as the type of company hiring, whether private or public, EMT and Paramedic compensation is often quite rewarding. Hourly wages range from as low as $9 per hour to as high as $24 per hour. Paid hourly, EMT’s and Paramedics are also paid over time compensation for hours worked over a 40 hour work week as well as receiving benefits. Unions and contracts are also available for this specific career, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.*
*According to the BLS, http://www.bls.gov/oco/