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How Do I Get Started Working for an Ambulance Service?

How Do I Get Started Working for an Ambulance Service? Working with an ambulance service to save lives is a high calling, and not one many undertake. While there are several types of ambulance workers and other emergency service workers, each one follows a similar pattern of education to work in the field. Education is crucial to working in emergency medical services, so it shouldn’t be neglected.


The admission requirements for an EMT-Basic program are simple. Potential recruits need to have a high school diploma or equivalent. Depending on the program, there may be other requirements, like physical and mental tests, as well as background checks, drug tests, and up-to-date immunizations.

Potential applicants should also have problem-solving and communication skills, as well as the ability to stay calm under pressure. Physical dexterity and attention to detail are incredibly important, as small mistakes can be disastrous. If a candidate meets all of these requirements, they shouldn’t have too many issues getting accepted into a program.

Basic Training

EMT basic training can take anywhere from six months to two years to complete, depending on the program. These programs are offered at technical schools and community colleges, depending on location. The programs can require anywhere from 120 to 150 hours of coursework to complete. After graduation trainees will know how to complete patient assessments, handle emergency situations, proper use of field equipment, and have a cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) card.

After graduation trainees will have the opportunity to continue to learn more by applying their knowledge in the field. Basic training is a requirement to work in any medical services field, so potential workers in the field will want to ensure they complete one of these programs.


The next step in the process is certification. This usually involves passing a national or state exam. This is administered through the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT). The exam measures cognitive and psychomotor skills, and questions are tailored to the student based on responses.

Candidates will have three chances to pass the exam. If they fail any attempt, they need to wait another 15 days before they can attempt it again. Once they successfully pass the exam, they must be recertified every two years to maintain their certification.

Advanced EMT Training

While certification is technically the final step in becoming an Emergency Services Worker, receiving advanced EMT training is the way to open up more opportunities and different jobs. It will require around 300 hours of coursework. Some of those 300 hours will also be spent as clinical time in a hospital. The focus of the program is advanced instruction on using medication, complex airway devices, IVs, EKGs, and more.

If you’re interested in becoming a paramedic, it’s best to complete this training. Not only will it teach you more about the field, but it will provide more experience should you apply for other jobs.

Paramedic Programs

These programs are certificate based. If you’ve passed certification and have shown an aptitude for the field, you should have no issue applying for a position. You may be required to work as an EMT for several months before applying, depending on the program. All the previous requirements must still be met, as well as a proficiency in all manners of the Emergency Medical Services job.

Becoming a paramedic is not a necessary step to work as an EMS worker. You can choose to become one, or remain as an EMT or other position in the field.

Working in EMS

EMS isn’t for everyone. Working as a paramedic may not be a dream for every person who works in the field. It’s up to you to decide how you want to approach it. Regardless of where in the field you want to work, it’s best to complete some training to prepare. If you’re interested in working as an EMT or other EMS job, contact our team today. We’ll help you figure out where to get started.


MedStar Ambulance
Worcester, MA

MedStar Ambulance
Leominster, MA



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