In terms of education, requirements for developing a career in paramedicine lay emphasis on completion of at least EMT- Basic level.
Then, you can either systematically proceed to the EMT- Intermediate and EMT- Paramedic level or directly opt for the paramedic level after completing one-year EMT training and taking necessary preparatory classes.
Paramedics are the highest in the order of Emergency Medical Technicians. Thus, they have advanced skills in all the functions of EMT- Basic. Certain education and skill requirements for paramedics, however, vary from one state to another.
Eligibility Requirements for Enrolling in Paramedic Programs
- Minimum age is 18 years.
- Having a high school diploma or GED certificate is a must.
- You should also be holding an EMT- Basic certificate
- Holding a valid motor vehicle driver’s license is another essential requirement
After successful completion of your paramedic certificate or associate degree, you will have to pass the NREMT exam and obtain licensure.
Beyond the EMT- Paramedic certification, there are certain specialty certifications as well like Flight Paramedic, Oil Rig Paramedic, Wilderness Paramedic, etc.
Paramedic education shall cost about $1,000 to $10,000. In certain states, the tuition fee may be waived off in case you are affiliated with a rescue squad, EMT agency or fire department.
Personal Prerequisites for Paramedics
Paramedics are expected to possess strong technical skills. In addition, there are some other desired personal qualities that can help these healthcare professionals deal with emergency situations calmly.
For instance, a paramedic should be able to stay clear-headed in stressful situations so that he or she can think quickly and take appropriate decisions in a crisis. Plus, effective analysis and problem solving skill are extremely useful.
Moreover, you should have a high sense of responsibility as you would be responsible for saving the life of a sick or seriously injured person requiring emergency medical treatment.
Keep in mind that a paramedic is personally, legally, morally and ethically responsible each drug administered to the patient.
Here’s a video to help you understand what it takes to become a paramedic.
Some other characteristics that can help you succeed in this career are honesty, selflessness, patience, adaptability, compassion, mental and emotional stability, etc.
Plus, excellent communication and interpersonal skills can develop patient rapport and handle his/her friends or relatives present on the scene.
Good leadership and teamwork qualities, on the other hand, will help you coordinate well with the team you are working with.
In addition, you must be prepared to function independently in a dynamic, non-structural environment as well. Needless to say, you are most likely to gain satisfaction in this job if you are always willing to help others.
Other Requirements for Becoming a Paramedic
Apart from subject knowledge and personal skills, physical fitness plays an important role in determining your success in paramedic career because you may be required to carry your patients in emergency situations. Thus, you need to have good physical stamina and endurance.
You also need to undergo a tuberculosis and hepatitis B test. Besides, paramedic students are required to passing a drug test and criminal background check prior to registration for the classes.