EMT training and EMT paramedic training, licensing and certification in the state of Texas are governed by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) and the EMS and Trauma Systems, which is regulated by the DSHS.
The state of Texas has five levels of EMT certification:
- emergency care attendant (ECA)
- licensed paramedic
To become a certified EMT or paramedic in the state of Texas an individual:
- must be at least 18
- must complete a DSHS approved EMS training course
- must have a valid driver’s license
- must submit an EMS Personnel Certification Application and fee
- must pass a criminal background check, which requires submitting fingerprints through the Fingerprint Applicant Services of Texas (FAST)
- must have a high school diploma, GED or equivalent
- must pass the NREMT exam
- (for paramedic) must complete the above steps and submit proof of either a 2 year EMS degree or a 4 year degree in a required field.
Texas EMS training and degree programs –
are available through technical programs, colleges and state approved institutions. It is important to be sure the program you are considering is state approved and accredited. The state of Texas and the EMS and Trauma Systems also requires the individual who has completed EMS training and paramedic training in Texas to pass the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT) exam in order to be certified and licensed in the state.
Once training is completed, you may to take the NREMT exam prior to submitting your state application. The application processing takes approximately four to six weeks.
An individual certified through out-of-state through emergency medical services may apply for Texas certification by reciprocity. Persons with Emergency Care Attendant (ECA); First Responder (FR) or Emergency Medical Responder (EMR) are not eligible for Texas Reciprocity. EMTs, EMT-Intermediates, Paramedics and Paramedic Licensures may apply.
Reciprocity for EMS Levels
The out-of-state EMS certified candidate must submit proof of and possess current EMS certification from another state or territory.
The individual must complete an out-of-state reciprocity application and include a fee.
Must possess a National Registry (NR) certification or must contact the NR to take their Assessment exam for the State of Texas.
Applicants seeking reciprocity at the EMT-I level must have specific training that passes the requirements of the state of Texas. These include training in areas such as alternative airway intubation devices, and IV initiation, patient assessment and management.
Reciprocity for Paramedic Licensure
A person must possess current certification and/or licensing in another state or US territory and meet the Texas State academic requirements in order to apply for paramedic licensure through reciprocity. If you do not meet the academic requirements for licensure, you may be eligible for paramedic certification by reciprocity. In the state of Texas, the procedures for reciprocity for paramedic certification and paramedic licensure are different. They are as follows:
1. Academic Requirements for Paramedic Licensure
A certified paramedic can apply for initial Paramedic Licensure if you meet one of the following: an associate degree in EMS; a baccalaureate degree; or a post graduate degree.
The degree must be from an accredited school that is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as an approved accrediting authority.
2. Eligibility for Applying for Paramedic Licensure Reciprocity
Be at least 18 years old
Submit a Paramedic Licensure reciprocity application
Submit the fee
Must possess a current Paramedic certification from another state
Must have a current National Registry paramedic certification or successfully pass the
National Registry Assessment exam Must present college transcripts or a copy of diploma that verifies the academic requirements
Submit an Out of State Verification Form A from states you are certified
Must possess the following Academic Requirements
-an associate degree in EMS;
-a baccalaureate degree; or
-a post graduate degree
Recertification and Upgrading EMS levels
Once certified, continuing education re-certification courses are required. The state recommends you begin the re-certification process 3-4 months prior to your EMT certification expiration date, including the application process which takes approximately 4-6 weeks.
If you hold an EMS certification and want to train and test for a higher level of certification, you must first submit an initial paper application. Currently, early 2014, this will have to be done by paper form. You can access the certification application at this link:
Additional requirements for pursuing EMT training and EMT paramedic training exist, and most details of these requirements are fairly common state to state. Read the articles EMT Training and EMT Paramedic Training for additional information, details, and a list of these requirements.
According to the U.S. 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
Texas Department of State Health Services, Office of EMS/Trauma Systems ”
by mail at, PO Box 149347, Austin, TX 78714-9347
or by phone: (512) 834-6700.
You can also visit the office:
The Exchange Building, 8407 Wall Street, Suite N-410, Austin, TX 78754.
Or call the office, (512) 834-6700.
The following are just a few of the dozens of EMT training and paramedic schools in Texas that offer accredited paramedic training programs:
College of the Mainland in Texas City, Texas offers an EMT training school program, as well as an associate degree program for those interested in becoming a paramedic.
Del Mar College EMT Paramedic Training Program in Corpus Christi, Texas has a paramedic training program that offers both a certificate and associate degree, beginning in the fall of each year.
Grayson County College EMT Paramedic Training Program in Denison, Texas has an Paramedic course that does not require a pre-acceptance process.
Houston Community College Texas EMT Paramedic Program in Houston, Texas offers a paramedic certificate program offered that begins with EMT basic certification and continues into a two-year paramedic training program.
Life Ambulance EMS Academy Paramedic School in El Paso, Texas has been offering classes for EMT Basic, EMT Intermediate and EMT Paramedic training programs since 1999.
University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio in San Antonio, Texas EMT Basic EMT training certificate program is offered during spring and summer semesters. The Paramedic training program begins in the fall.