HOW TO BECOME AN EMT
You are making a very wise decision in reading about how to become an EMT. Not only is becoming an EMT an altruistic career, but it's a lifelong commitment to saving people's lives. I applaud and respect you. Now....what must you do to become an EMT?
First, you should know that there are different types of EMTs. They are all considered EMS (Emergency Medical Service) personnel, but each one has different roles to play in the team and different types of training. Another thing to know is that there are different types of EMTs in each state. Where Alaska has five different levels of EMT, Arkansas has four, and Florida only has two. This makes it important to know what your state's specific requirements are. You do not want to think that all states have the same conditions to becoming an EMT and passing through the ranks to the top (a paramedic).
So what's do we do now?
STEPS TO TAKE
- Depending upon the state you reside in, you'll want to check if you need to either become a First Responder or become an EMT-B (Basic).
- Either way, you'll want to apply and attend a state-approved training program.
- Then you'll want to apply for positions (could be volunteer til you're done training) in different organizations. For example: fire or police departments, private ambulance companies, research labs, or hospitals.
- Apply for and take the NREMT exam. This is a nationally recognized registry for everything EMS. Most (if not all) state's require you pass this exam.
- Apply for and take your state-specific EMT-B exam and become certified.
- Apply for licensure in your state.
- Then you can start gaining experience and moving up through your state's ranks. And if you so desire, you can eventually become a paramedic.
- Pay the necessary application, license, and/or exam fees.
WHAT'S THE PAY???
Okay okay! You probably only wanted to read this article for this very reason, to find out how much an EMT makes. Well, that again depends upon what state you live in, but the average salary across the U.S. is $33,020. The average hourly wage is $15.88. But you should take into consideration that most EMTs and paramedics are paid hourly, get tons of overtime, and therefore making much more than that.
So congratulations to you for even thinking about becoming an EMT. That's a great thought to have. I hope you find yourself happy and helping others live much longer. To your future!