What Emergency Medical Technician - Paramedics Do

A paramedic is a healthcare professional who provides emergency treatment, including advanced life support, to patients in emergencies. The paramedic's role is to assess the urgent medical needs of patients and stabilize their conditions. Paramedics are the most highly trained emergency medical responders.

Types of Work Environments

  • Ambulances and ambulatory helicopters
  • Sporting events
  • In tandem with policemen and firefighters to manage critical environments

Education and Training Requirements

To become a paramedic, you must have a high school diploma and a current emergency medical technician certificate. They then require nearly 1,000 hours of training in emergency medical procedures including the use of cardiac defibrillator and giving intravenous medications. This training can take between ten months and two years to complete. As a paramedic, you will be trained to perform the following skills, in addition to the skills you have as an EMT: advanced management, oral endotracheal intubations, nasal endotracheal intubation, percutaneous cricothyroidotomy, continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP), needle decompression, transport ventilator, pharmacological intervention, intravenous access (IV), intraosseous access (IO), intramuscular injections (IM), subcutaneous injections (SC), sublingual administration (SL), administer over 30 medication by IV, IO, or IM/SC, medical/cardiac care, place and interpret electrocardiograms (ECG), synchronized cardioversion, manual defibrillation, transcutaneous pacing, and more in-depth medical and trauma patient assessment.  


According to salary.com, the median salary for paramedics is $49,071 per year.

Professional Organization

The National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians
National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians
Ohio Division of Emergency Medical Services

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