There’s a common misconception about the Emergency Medical Services industry, which is also one of our newest program offerings. When an ambulance goes whirling by you in traffic on its way to an emergency, it’s not merely an ambulance driver behind the wheel, but a highly trained emergency medical technician or paramedic capable of treating and stabilizing the patient they are rushing off to “pick up”.
It’s a position that has evolved throughout the years, first growing prominent in the 1970s. Some public perception has remained stagnant on the “transport” portion of the job description, but training, technology, and medical protocols have put focus onto treatment directly at the scene of emergency.
At Kirtland, our program is a two-year associate’s. Whether you have an interest in being an EMT or paramedic, the program will prepare you for on-scene care and transport, pre-hospital care, and operating complex medical and safety equipment. The program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs in conjunction with the Committee on Accreditation of Education Programs for the Emergency Medical Services Professionals.
This kind of program establishes students for an array of jobs, outside of the more familiar ambulance setting. EMS personnel work includes helicopters, cardiac catheter labs, doctors’ offices, emergency rooms, fire departments, federal agencies, and occupational and industrial settings.
The major difference between an EMT and paramedic is the amount of training and the ability to perform invasive procedures on scene. Emergency medical technicians conduct basic, noninvasive procedures at emergency sites. Paramedics, with additional training, are the most skilled emergency responders and capable of performing invasive and pharmacological procedures on site.
Job outlook for emergency medical technicians and paramedics is promising. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports a projected growth of 23% through 2022, which is much faster than average. It reports the median pay is $31,020, with the top 10 percent earning more than $53,550.
It’s a work environment for those drawn to public service. Public safety is always an important issue, and this career path puts you on the front lines of emergencies. Upon completion of our program, you’ll be eligible to take the state licensure exam for EMT and Paramedic. Completing the four-semester Paramedic training also fulfills the standards of the National Registry of EMTs, and you’ll be qualified to test at the National Registry for National Certification.
Learn more about our Emergency Medical Services program.