California has one of the largest EMT/EMS services in the entire country and the state is continually hiring certified EMS personnel. EMT and paramedic training, licensing and certification in the state of California are governed by the Emergency Medical Services Authority or EMSA. This state bureau has the responsibility of managing the entire EMS system for the state of California.
In the state of California, those who have completed EMS training in CA find employment primarily with ambulance services, fire departments, private industries and corporations. The California training also prepares EMS personal to work in both clinical and emergency environments.
Both EMTs and paramedics must complete a California EMT training program that is state accredited in order to be certified. California training alone is not sufficient; it requires a state accredited program or courses. The state of California and the EMSA also requires the individual who has completed EMT training to pass the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT) exam and recognizes the exam certification if taken in other states.
California EMT training applicants who wish to take the EMT certification test are first required to have 110 hours of EMT training instructional study and another 10 hours of medical training studies. Paramedic training in California requires a minimum of 1,090 hours for training.
Each state has its own EMS (Emergency Medical Services) Board and requirements for EMS certification. To become certified in the state of California an individual:
• must be 18 years of age
• must enroll in EMT-basic training and pass EMT certification
• must pass a criminal background check
• must have a high school diploma, GED or equivalent
• must possess current CPR certification
For paramedic training - the state of California requires an applicant to:
- Submit a Statement of Citizenship, Alienage, and Immigration Status for State Paramedic License Application or Paramedic License renewal.
- Complete a California paramedic license application.
- Submit the appropriate fees which are dependent upon your status and what you are applying for. This includes California EMT-paramedic training graduates, out-of-state EMT paramedics, and Challenge Candidates. Current fees range from $250-$300.
- Successfully complete an approved paramedic training program.
The paramedic training program consists of 1,090 (minimum) hours to include:
- Didactic and skills – 450 hours
- Hospital and clinical training – 160 hours
- Field internship – 480 hours – which must include a minimum of 40 advanced life support (ALS) patient contacts)
Every two years, for those who hold an EMT-II, EMT III, or paramedic certification, the state of California requires EMS personnel to verify that they are still up to par on their continuing education requirements, also known as CE requirements, or EMT refresher courses. It is recommended that an individual begin the application process for re-certification well before your certification expires.
According to the United States Department of Labor:
Employment of Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) and paramedics is expected to grow by 19 percent between 2006 and 2016, which is faster than the average for all occupations. Job prospects should be are very favorable and job opportunities should be best in private ambulance services. Competition will be greater for jobs in local government, including fire, police, and independent third-service rescue squad departments which tend to have better salaries and benefits. EMTs and paramedics who have advanced EMT training education and paramedic training, such as Paramedic level certification, should enjoy the most favorable job prospects as employees and patients demand higher levels of care before arriving at the hospital.
Additional requirements for pursuing EMT training and EMT paramedic training exist, and details of these are fairly common state to state. Read the articles EMT Training and EMT Paramedic Training for details and a list of these requirements.
Further information can be obtained by contacting the California EMSA:
(916) 322-4336, or the Paramedic Licensure: (916) 323-9875.