EMT’s are certified based on the level of EMT training or certification program they had. The National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians or NREMT offers certification exams and currently used by most of the states, 46 states to be exact, as their certification for one or more EMT certification levels. Some states give their own certification or licensure exam and set their own standards. The NHTSA set the requirements and guidelines for the EMT training and certification.
The NREMT EMT certification means that you have demonstrated competence. To work you still need to have a state license as required to all emergency medical professionals.
NREMT Certification Requirements
You need to be at least 18 years old and you should have completed the state approved EMT training for your EMT level within the past two years verified by your Program Director on the NREMT website. You also need to have a current CPR credential for health care providers verified by your Program Director. For EMT-Basic, you also need to have completed the state-approved EMT-Basic psychomotor exam.
Applying for the NREMT Certification
You need to create and login to their website, fill out the application, pay the application fee of $70 for EMT-Basic, $100 for EMT-Intermediate, and $110 for Paramedics. You will then receive the Authentication to Test or ATT after you become eligible to take the exam. The ATT contains important details and instructions like schedules and proper identification.
NREMT Certification Exams
On the EMT certification, you need to complete the cognitive and psychomotor exams. The cognitive exam, a computer adaptive test, varies items and required completion time based on your EMT level. The exam will cover everything about EMS care. You need to have the ability to provide safe and effective medical care to pass. You can apply after 15 days for a reexamination if you are unsuccessful. You are give 6 attempts to pass and if you fail all six, you need to repeat the whole EMT training course.
The psychomotor examination is a practical exam of your emergency care skills. The skills or hands-on knowledge and ability you need to demonstrate vary depending on your EMT level. Some of these skills include patient assessment and management, cardiac arrest management, spinal immobilization, bleeding control/shock management, mouth-to-mouth ventilation, and many more. You are given 2 or 3 attempts for the exam depending on your EMT course level except EMT-Basic. EMT-Basic also needs to pass an state-approved psychomotor exam.
You need to be actively working as a medical professional using your EMT skills, complete educational requirements and recertification report, and completed 72 hours of continuing education or examination within six months before expiration.
For a more complete information about the EMT certification offered by NREMT you can check the NREMT website.
State EMT Certification
Some states like Colorado still requires applicants to be NREMT certified whether they had their EMT training in that state or from another state and wanted to be certified in that state.