EMT and paramedic training, licensing and certification in the state of New York are governed by the New York State Department of Health, Bureau of Emergency Medical Services. The New York State EMS Bureau is responsible for the general oversight of the EMS system statewide and the state has five levels of training and certification:
- Certified First Responder (CFR)
- Basic EMT-B ~ Emergency Medical Technician
- Intermediate AEMT-I ~ Advanced Emergency Medical Technician
- Critical Care AEMT–CC ~ Advanced Emergency Medical Technician
- Paramedic AEMT–P ~ Advanced Emergency Medical Technician
Each state has its own EMS (Emergency Medical Services) Bureau and requirements for EMS certification. In New York this requires participating in a state accredited EMS training program or courses.
For NY certification as a First Responder an individual:
- must be at least 16 years of age when they take the certification exam
- must have a high school diploma, GED or equivalent
- must complete a DOH-65 form (Emergency Medical Services Certification)
- must complete an New York State CPR course that is accredited
- must enroll in EMT-basic training & complete the exam with a passing grade
- must pass a criminal background check
For certification as an EMT individuals must, along with the above requirements:
- Be at least 18 years of age or older
- Possess an Emergency Medical Technician Certificate (given by the New York State Department of Health)
- Complete high school, possessing a diploma or a GED
- Possess a valid driver’s license from any state
The state of New York also requires the individual who has completed New York EMT training to pass the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT) exam and recognizes the exam certification if taken in other states. In addition, passing of a state approved exam is also required before state licensing is issued.
Once certified as an EMT, advancement towards paramedic requires additional training. This usually entails working for at least 1 year as an EMT, and continued EMT training for REMAC certification. REMAC is a New York committee which consists of physicians and paramedics who establish the capacity of practices and protocols for paramedics in the New York regions. Although the scope can vary region to region, each EMT paramedic candidate must pass REMAC certification before employment as a paramedic. The test includes a written question exam and an oral interview exam. In New York an EMT certificate is valid for 37 months from the last day of the month that you passed your certification examination.
Furthermore, the Pilot Recertification Program allows an EMT, EMT-Intermediate, EMT-Critical Care or Paramedic, who is in continuous practice, demonstrates competency and completes appropriate continuing education, to renew their certification without taking a certification exam.
New York State does not have a specific scope of practice document for the CFR/EMT/AEMT. Instead, in NYS, scope of practice for the CFR/EMT/AEMT is defined by curriculum, protocol, and physician medical direction at the EMS agency, region, and State levels. If you need to determine whether a particular skill falls within the EMS provider’s scope of practice, refer to the appropriate curriculum and protocol.
New York EMS Reciprocity
If you hold EMS certification from another state or participated in EMT training courses, and would like to work as an EMT or paramedic in New York State, you can pursue New York State certification. Although New York State does not grant certification as an EMT or Advanced EMT based solely on National Registry, you may apply with your national registry and you will be issued a letter that allows you to enroll in a NYS Refresher Course. In addition, if you currently hold an EMS certification or license from another state or the U.S. Military you may be able to obtain a New York State Certification through the reciprocity process. Information can be found through an “Information Packet for New York State EMS Reciprocity”. This can be found on the Department of Health, Bureau of Emergency Medical Services website.
Once you have completed the reciprocity application and mailed it in (they do not accept calls), the Bureau of EMS will send notification in the mail when the process is complete.
For reciprocity applicants and individuals who are or were in the military and:
- have completed the appropriate and approved military medical training (ie 68W) in the last 6 years and
- hold a current National Registry EMT-B credential obtained by having completed the practical skills and written examination for the current credential
will be certified/recertified as a NYS EMT-B for the remaining time of their NREMT card.
There are additional requirements for pursuing EMT and paramedic training in each region, 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.
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.
Further information can be obtained by contacting the New York State Department of Health, 875 Central Avenue, Albany, NY 12206-1388; phone (518) 402-0996. Or visiting the New York State Department of Health, Bureau of Emergency Medical Services website.