What is an EMT-Basic?
An EMT-Basic (EMT-B) is a person who has:
- Taken and passed a "CPR for Healthcare
Providers" course, based on either the Red Cross or American
Heart Association curriculum.
- Taken a state-approved, 110 hour EMT-B
course based on the U.S. Department of Transportation EMT-B
curriculum and passed with a final grade of 70 or more
- Passed the state written certification examination
with a score of 70 or more
- Passed all of the stations of the state practical
The EMT-B course teaches initial evaluation, treatment
and transport of patients with medical problems and/or trauma.
Students learn to recognize and provide initial care for ailments
like shock, heart problems, breathing problems, strokes, burns,
diabetes, drowning and accidents.
EMT-Basics are the foundation of American prehospital
Emergency Medical Care. For medical emergencies, they provide
rapid response, initial evaluation and care, and transport to
an appropriate medical facility. They also provide transport between
facilities for people who are bedridden and/or require continuous
monitoring and care.
Why take an EMT course?
A common reason that a person would take
an EMT-Basic course is so that they can become certified and work
full time on an ambulance. Some people take the course to work
part time on an ambulance. Not all people who take the course
work on ambulances.
Some people take the course because they might
be a first responder (police officer, fire fighter) looking for
more knowledge. Other people might take the course because they
want to work as a police officer or fire fighter and are about
to take a civil service exam (in MA being a certified EMT-Basic
is 1 extra point on your civil service exam score!).
Other people may take the course because they
will be part of an emergency response team at their current job
or to volunteer for services like the American Red Cross. Some
people take the course to have second job or work in a hospital.
Some people take this course because it is worth a certain number
of college credits.
What are my job options once I become a
certified EMT-Basic ?
Once you have completed the course and
successfully passed the state written and practical exam you will
be a certified EMT. Once you receive your certification you can
then work as an EMT.
People may work as an EMT in different ways.
Some people will choose to work "in the streets". This
might be in an emergency setting by working for a city or town's
EMS provider. There are cities and towns who hire private ambulance
services to provide EMS for their areas. This may be a great way
to get right into "the streets". Some areas use the
fire or police departments as their EMS provider. In these situations
you would need to be an employee of that department, so you may
have to take civil service exams to be hired.
Some people may choose to work as an EMT in a
"non-emergency" role. This is usually accomplished by
working for a private ambulance service that deals with mostly
transfers from facility to facility. There are also some hospitals
that hire EMT's to work in the emergency room setting.
There is also the chance to work as a volunteer
in some places, such as working for the American Red Cross. Every
area is a little different so there may be more or less opportunities
in your area. We would be glad to help you find out what exists
in your area.
Will I be certified after I take the course?
NO. This course will prepare you to take
the state of Massachusetts written and practical exam. Upon successful
completion of the course (a course average of 70% or higher, and
successfully completing all practical skills) the student can
apply to take the state exam. Only the state of Massachusetts
can certify a student as an EMT. The state requires a score of
70% on the written exam, and successfully passing all 4 stations
of the practical exam.