To become an EMT, a person must be at least 18 years old, can understand, read and write English, possess a high school diploma (or equivalent), and have a current certification in CPR equivalent to the American Heart Association's Course C (CPR for the Professional Rescuer).
The prospective EMT must then successfully complete an EMT Training Course (usually about 130 hours in length) and successfully pass the National Registry of EMTs, EMT-Basic exam. This includes a written test and several skills tests in dealing with patient care. The Medical Center offers an EMT Training Course. Download the application or call (270) 745-1244 for more information. The application can be mailed to the address at the top of the form or faxed to (270) 745-1207.
Once certified, the EMT-Basic must maintain NREMT-B certification. This is done every two years and includes completing 70 hours of continuing education on various topics.
An EMT is trained to provide initial stabilization of a sick or injured person. They do this through training in bleeding control, treatment of shock, monitoring vital signs, splinting fractures, spinal immobilization, oxygen administration and other basic level skills.
A small amount of additional training and meeting a few additional requirements allows the EMT to also utilize the Automated External Defibrillator (AED) to correct certain life-threatening heart rhythms and to assist patients in taking certain medications for cardiac, diabetic, allergic reaction, breathing and other problems.