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What is an EMR, EMT and EMT-Paramedic?
The most common certification in Emergency Medical Services are the, emergency medical responder (EMR) and the emergency medical technician (EMT). There are three levels of certification that are common to almost every state; EMR, EMT-Basic, and EMT-Paramedic. Within the industry, it is very common to refer to a basic EMT as simply EMT, and to refer to EMT-Paramedics as paramedics.
So, What’s the Difference?
The biggest differences between paramedics, EMR’s and EMTs are the training and the scope of practice (what they are allowed to do).EMR’s usually receive 80 – 100 hours of training, Basic EMTs usually receive 120 – 180 hours of training, while paramedics get anywhere from 1,200 hours to 1,800 hours of training. Paramedic programs often award two-year degrees.
The scope of practice differences between EMR’s, EMTs and Paramedics can be summed up by the ability to break the skin. Most states do not allow basic emergency medical technicians to give shots or start intravenous lifelines. Paramedics, on the other hand, can give shots as well as use more advanced airway management devices to support breathing. Basic EMTs are usually restricted to using oxygen, glucose, asthma inhalers, and epinephrine auto-injectors (a common exception to the no-needles rule). Paramedics are trained in the use of 30-40 medications, depending on the state.
What type of training do I need to be an EMR or EMT?
- You must be between the ages of 14 and 16 years of age to start the EMR Program.
- You must be a minimum 16 years of age to start the EMT Program.
The EMR and EMT Program prepares the student for Written and Practical Certification Exams. These courses includes classroom lectures, skill lab sessions, and a 10 hour scheduled hospital observation or Paramedic ride along. Upon successful completion of a course the student will be eligible to sit for the State of Connecticut EMR Exam or the National Registry of EMT’s Exam. Successful completion of this exam will award you a 3 year National and Connecticut EMR or EMT Certification.
What will I learn in the EMR and EMT programs?
The EMR and EMT course follow the US Dept. of Transportation National Curriculum. The course is conducted in 7-15 modules. Westport Volunteer EMS conducts these EMR & EMT classes in a variety of schedules to accommodate individual student needs. You can find classes held in the evenings or daytime in several hour blocks of time.
Who will pay for the cost of my EMR or EMT Training if I am a volunteer?
If you are a member of a local volunteer ambulance then usually an up front cost to you for initial training. Check with your local organization to see if you eligible for free tuition or can be enrolled in a tuition reimbursement program. Westport EMS offers tuition reimbursement after one year of service to Westport EMS only if you meet the required volunteer hours set by Westport Volunteer EMS policies.
Students not eligible for or not submitting payment authorization from a local EMS organization may pay for classes by check or money order only.