Emergency Medical Technician – Paramedic (EMT-4/EMT-P/EMTP)

  • Emergency Medical Technician – Paramedic (EMT-4/EMT-P/EMTP)

Work Activities/Work Locations

  • Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT) provide emergency medical care to the sick or injured at the scene and en route to the hospital. They assess many varying emergency situations and determine what care is needed and provide that care.
  • They maintain contact with the hospital emergency room physicians who prescribe drugs and/or medical procedures that EMTs administer to patients while en route to the nearest ER.
  • When arriving they transport patients to the emergency department, and report their observations and actions to hospital staff. Afterward, they restock supplies, check equipment, and decontaminate the vehicle if disease was present.
  • Some must be able to safely drive ambulances thru traffic to get people to hospitals as quickly as possible.
  • Beyond general duties, there are four levels of qualifications for further duties: First Responder, EMT-Basic, EMT-Intermediate/Intermediate Technician, and EMT-Paramedic. (See previous Career Scripts) Some states, however, do their own certification and use different rating scales to determine proficiency.
  • One must successfully complete EMT-Basic as a prerequisite for enrolling in EMT-Paramedic.
  • EMT-Paramedic – They provide the most extensive pre-hospital care and techniques for advanced level private and municipal ambulance services. Paramedics manage emergency patient care and treatment, perform comprehensive patient assessments, use critical thinking skills, provide advanced cardiac life support, perform endotracheal intubation, administer various medications, interpret EKG’s, and perform advanced skills and interventions.
  • They work in hospitals, police, fire and public services departments, prisons or jails, or (they) are employed by rescue squads or private ambulance services.

Advantages and Disadvantages

  • EMTs like helping people during emergencies. They take pride in efficiently handling serious medical situations.
  • They must be able to work as a member of a team. Must be able to work without direct supervision.
  • Their work can be stressful. Not for people who lose control during a crisis. Courage, dedication and assertiveness are assets.
  • Many work rotating shifts, weekends, and holidays.
  • EMTs work both indoors and outdoors, in all types of weather, under adverse conditions.
  • 80% of EMT’s in Wisconsin are paid on a per call basis. Some EMT’s are volunteers.

Getting Started

  • Students should take a college preparatory curriculum.
  • Helpful high school courses would include anatomy and physiology, mathematics, English, chemistry, biology, Driver’s Education, and Medical Terminology.
  • Job shadowing is recommended.
  • For acceptance into the EMT-Paramedic program, a Wisconsin State EMT- Basic Licensure is mandatory.
  • At Gateway Technical College, the student completes another 2 semesters of classes (36 credits). Students focus on advanced level pre-hospital care and techniques for advanced level private and municipal ambulance services. After completing the two semesters, students are eligible to receive the Paramedic Technician Associate Degree.
  • At Fox Valley Technical College, Paramedic Technician is a 1,150-hour Diploma Program that consists of 648 hours of classroom/lab instruction and 504 hours of clinical. The core courses include: Patient Assessment, Advanced Airway Management, Medical Emergencies, Nebulizer, Administration of Glucagon/50 percent Dextrose, Narcan, Cardiac Drugs, Intravenous Therapy, Blood Sugar Evaluation, Cardiac Rhythm Interpretation, Advanced care of Trauma, Infants and Children, Operations, and Clinical/field Experience.
  • Northcentral Technical College (NTC) offers several options towards an Associate Degree. Upon successful completion of the second semester, and successful licensing, in the short-term Paramedic program, the student is prepared for entry-level employment as a Paramedic. Their skills after graduation include identifying, caring for, and treating a wide variety of medical situations that include Advanced Cardiac Life Support and Pre Hospital Trauma care. Students will also have the opportunity to work in a variety of environments such as fire departments, hospital emergency rooms, private ambulance services and industrial medicine. Once the short-term program has been completed, students may choose to apply credits earned to an Associate Degree that may be obtained while they continue working in their field.
  • After graduating from an accredited program, in order to practice as an EMT/Paramedic in Wisconsin you MUST be Certified AND Licensed.

Educational Institutions

Chippewa Valley Technical College
Fox Valley Technical College
Gateway Technical College
Lakeshore Technical College
Madison Area Technical College
Mid-State Technical College
Moraine Park Technical College – Fond du Lac
Northcentral Technical College
Northeast Wisconsin Technical College
Waukesha County Technical College 
Western Technical College
Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College – Ashland
Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College – New Richmond
Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College – Rice Lake
Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College – Superior

  • A high school diploma/GED and being 18 years of age is required for acceptance into the EMT-Basic Program.
  • For acceptance into a EMT-Paramedic program, a current Wisconsin State EMT-Basic, EMT Intermediate/Intermediate Technician Level Licensure is mandatory or a refresher course within the past 24 months. Nicolet Area Technical College also requires current endorsement of a physician medical director. These prerequisites are usually standard but can vary some for different schools.
  • Another prerequisite requires passage of a criminal background test and immunizations before Clinicals can be taken. Proof of CPR Professional Rescuer or CPR Healthcare Provider is also required.
  • After graduating from an accredited program, in order to practice as an EMT-Paramedic in Wisconsin you MUST be Certified AND Licensed.
  • CERTIFICATION means you have met the standards of the certifying body credentialing. Certification is recognized by employers, state licensing agencies and the public as being tied to competency.
  • STATE LICENSURE gives you the right to work in a particular capacity. National certified EMTs who are NOT State licensed CANNOT practice. After you obtain National Certification, you must obtain a license to work.
  • EMT Certification is through the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT). Proof of accredited training, passing both a Cognitive Exam and Psychomotor Exam are among the requirements for Certification.
  • The NREMT Paramedic cognitive exam is a computer adaptive test (CAT). The number of items a candidate can expect on the Paramedic exam will range from 80 to 150. The maximum amount of time given to complete the exam is 2 hours and 30 minutes. The exam will cover the entire spectrum of EMS care including: Airway, Ventilation, Oxygenation; Trauma; Cardiology; Medical; and EMS Operations. Items related to patient care are focused on adult patients (85%) and pediatric patients (15%).
  • The psychomotor section of the examination process consists of twelve (12) separate skills presented in a scenario-type format to approximate the abilities of the Paramedic to function in the out-of-hospital setting.
  • Obtaining Registration/Certification through the National Registry of EMTs is NOT to be confused with a Wisconsin license AND DOES NOT AUTHORIZE an individual to practice in the State of Wisconsin.
  • EMT (EMT-Basic, Intermediate Technician, Intermediate, and Paramedic) Licensure is through the State of Wisconsin. Proof of Certification and successful completion of Exam are among requirements for licensure.
  • Wisconsin E-licensing was implemented in August 2009. This system allows the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Section to issue one (1) EMS certificate/license to a First Responder or EMT at his/her highest eligible level. EMS personnel will no longer need to hold multiple licenses when affiliated with more than one EMS service.
  • Once licensed by the State of Wisconsin, individual EMS certificate/license holders will apply for local credentialing with any EMS providers with which they are associated.

Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs
1361 Park St.
Clearwater, FL, 33756

Committee on Accreditation of Educational Programs for the Emergency Medical Services Professions
8301 Lakeview Parkway, Suite 111 – 312
Rowlett, TX, 75088

Fire Science

National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians
PO Box 1400
Clinton, MS, 39060-1400
601/924-7744 or 800/34-NAEMT

National Association of EMS Physicians
PO Box 19570
Lenexa, KS, 66285
913/895-4611 or 800/228-3677

National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians
6610 Busch Blvd.
PO Box 29233
Columbus, OH, 43229

Professional Ambulance Association of Wisconsin
922 South Park St.
Madison, WI, 53715

Wisconsin Emergency Medical Services
1 West Wilson Street
Madison, WI, 53703
608-266-1865 or 608-261-6870


Career Outlook

Number Employed in 2014 (Wisconsin): 5,450
Number Employed in 2014 (U.S.): 241,200
Expected Employment in 2024 (U.S.): 299,600
Percent Employment Growth (2014-2024): 24%
Expected Annual Openings: 9,800
Median Salary in 2014 (Wisconsin): $27,076

Salary information is located at Career One Stop

Wisconsin AHEC Health Careers Information Center provides the most current salary information available from CareerOneStop. CareerOneStop will have a lapse between when the information is gathered and when it is released.

EMTs work 40 to 60 hours a week. They work rotating shifts and may work nights, evenings and holidays.

  • Paramedics may advance in rank within the Fire Department, become a dispatcher or helicopter and flight crew Paramedic.
  • Paramedics also get pay raises after working a designated amount of time and when they complete supplemental training classes.
  • Management and Administrative positions may be available.
  • Advancement opportunity to become a Critical Care Transport Paramedic (CCTP). Prerequisites include: 21 years of age; possess a valid EMT-Paramedic license/certification with a recommendation of three (3) years experience as a Paramedic; course completion card for Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS); course completion card for Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS) and several others.