The Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) profession is a not a career for those seeking glamorous roles.
It is a job that requires one to have the mental alertness, the physical agility, as well as the essential skill set to care for patients.
More often than not, the work entails administering and dispensing emergency treatment to patients in the most precarious of situations.
It has its rewarding moments, especially when someone you don’t even know has been spared his life due to your timely intervention. Lets answer the question, how long is EMT training?
How long is the training to become an emt?
EMT courses last about six months and are available in community colleges, in fire departments or other emergency service providers, or through learning facilities offering vocational certificate programs.
Some programs may require CPR or cardiopulmonary resuscitation certification prior to admission.
Generally, the coursework will include basic education subjects, such as disaster emergency medical services (EMS) and training for critical injuries, cardiac and respiratory emergencies.
You need not have any prior medical experience to be admitted in an EMT course.
The following minimum eligibility requirements are normally applied:
Age requirement – you must be of legal age; at least eighteen (18) years old. If you’re under 18, you may still enrol provided you apply not earlier than six (6) months before your 18th birthday, which means that you should be at least 17 ½ years old at the time of enrolment. This is with your understanding that your certificate of course completion shall be pending until you shall have reached the required age.
You must present proof that you are a holder of a current American Heart Association Basic Life Support for Healthcare Providers card or a Professional Rescuer CPR card from the American Red Cross, which CPR certification must be duly updated throughout the EMT course.
Didactic: This involves 120 hours of hands-on skills training.
Clinical/Field Ride-Along: This is the part that requires students to complete a total of at least 24 hours of observation under the direct supervision of a trainer or preceptor at a duly affiliated hospital or ambulance firm.
This must be completed within thirty (30) days from the last day of didactic instructions, with a minimum number of ten (10) patient contacts.
Final Testing: It takes around 4-8 hours to finish.
Overall, that’s around 150 hours, which can run for as short as two months to a maximum of four months, depending on the course format you choose.
There are courses that last from 3 to 11 weeks but those can be challenging to complete.
Requirements to become an EMT
Licensing and Background Check
Before any certification as an EMT is issued, you are bound by your local EMS to submit yourself for background check or investigation to determine whether or not you have a criminal past, and take and pass the National Registry of EMTs (NREMT-B) computer adaptive test. After successfully fulfilling all prerequisites, you are now eligible for state certification in the state where you intend to work.
Certification & Recertification
Certification requirements vary by state. In the State of California, for instance, the validity of an EMT certification is good for two years only. Refresher classes or the equivalent of 24-hour continuing EMT education will be required prior to recertification.
Why is certification important?
Aside from its validity, the certification levels are categorized into three aspects indicating each of their work responsibilities, rights and privileges, namely: 1) Basic 2) Intermediate or Advanced, and 3) Paramedic.
They are, of course, state-regulated and duly administered by the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians or NREMT, which liaises with other states on matters of licensing for EMTs.
How long does it take to be an EMT-Paramedic?
It was quick completing the coursework, but how long does it take to become an EMT-Paramedic?
Generally, if you’re studying on a full-time basis, it would take you about six months to earn your EMT-Basic training plus certification; add another six months to acquire your training and certification as an Intermediate or Advanced EMT, and lastly; a good one year to two years additional time, experience and effort to become a Paramedic.
Note well that the actual scope or amount of time it takes to become an EMT will eventually depend on the individual requirements set forth by each state.
A good idea would be to consult with the EMS Authority or Bureau for exact course requirements and proper benchmarks.
I hope this answers your question how long is EMT training?