What Education Does a Paramedic Need?

Paramedics need a high school diploma or equivalent and must complete a postsecondary educational program. Most states require paramedics to be licensed.

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The EMT Basic Course

The EMT Basic Course is the first step in becoming a paramedic. This course covers all of the basics of emergency medical care including CPR, First Aid, and introduces students to the EMS system.


The EMT Basic course generally lasts about 110 hours, but the actual length may vary depending on the program. The course is usually divided into two parts: classroom instruction andclinical training.

Classroom instruction typically covers topics such as emergency medical care, anatomy and physiology, and medical ethics. Students also learn how to use medical equipment and perform CPR. Clinical training gives students the opportunity to practice their skills in a real-life setting, such as a hospital or ambulance.

To become certified as an EMT Basic, students must pass an exam administered by their state’s certifying agency. Once they are certified, they are then eligible to take the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT) exam. This exam is not required for every state, but it is necessary for becoming certified in some states.


There are many different types of EMT training, but the most common is the EMT Basic course. This course is typically around 120 hours long and covers the basics of emergency medical care. Students will learn how to assess and treat patients, as well as how to properly use all of the equipment that they will be working with.

After completing an EMT Basic course, students will then need to take a certification exam in order to become certified paramedics. The certification process can vary from state to state, but it typically involves passing a written exam and a skills exam. Once a person is certified, they will need to renew their certification every few years in order to stay up-to-date on the latest medical procedures and changes in equipment.

The EMT Intermediate Course

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) defines an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) as “an individual who has satisfactorily completed a formal training program at a school, college, university, or medical institution and who is licensed or otherwise recognized by the state in which he/she practices.” An EMT-Intermediate is an individual who has completed an EMT-Basic course and a state-approved EMT-Intermediate training program.


In order to become an emergency medical technician (EMT), you must complete an accredited EMT training program. These programs typically range from six to 12 weeks in length and include both classroom and clinical instruction. Upon successful completion of an EMT program, you will be eligible to take the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT) certification exam.

While most EMT programs will cover the same core topics, the specific coursework for each program may vary slightly. However, all EMT programs will include instruction in the following areas:

-Anatomy and physiology
-Emergency medical care
-Patient assessment
-Emergency medical services operations
-Infection control
– CPR and first aid


EMT-Intermediates must complete a self-paced study program and pass a state-recognized cognitive and skills exam. Some states require EMTs to complete an accredited EMT program and achieve National Registry EMT certification before they are able to take the state’s EMT-Intermediate exam. In order to take the National Registry exam, individuals must hold current National Registry certification at the EMT level or higher.

EMT-Intermediates who wish to become Nationally Registered have two years from the date of their state registration to achieve National Registry certification. After two years, individuals must retake and pass both the state’s EMT cognitive and skills exams as well as the National Registry exam in order to maintain their national certification.

The Paramedic Course

A Paramedic is a medical professional who provides pre-hospital emergency care. They are trained to administer lifesaving treatment and transport patients to hospital for further care. In order to become a Paramedic, you will need to complete a Paramedic course.


Paramedics must complete a rigorous course of study that includes both classroom work and practical training. The exact curriculum varies from one programs to the next, but most will include the following topics:

-Anatomy and physiology
-Emergency medical procedures
-Patient assessment
-Ambulance operations
-Infection control
-Ethics and law


National and state boards certify paramedics. Some employers prefer certification from the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT). Candidates must pass both a cognitive and a skills examination to earn the national certification.

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