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Sorry if this is a repost but I couldn't find anything on this forum about the actual interview process for ER Tech positions. I have an interview Friday morning at a big (>30 bed) Level 1 trauma center and I am pretty nervous about my chances to get the "emergency services technician" position. I have my EMT-B and have a little (read very little) experience volunteering in another hospital ER and some experience on a squad but not a ton outside of what I did through school to get my cert (maybe 36 total hours with local FD on 911 calls). I do however have about a year of experience working in a gastroenterology office as a procedural scheduler. 


My questions are:


A) Do I really have a shot at this job without real street experience? I've been turned down from patient care tech positions at the same hospital recently due to not having a CNA...I'm not in any way associated with a nursing program which has been indicated is preferred...


B)What sort of questions can I expect as part of the interview process? Anything besides the usual "tell me about yourself", "what's your greatest weakness" sort of stuff? 


C)Is there anything I can do as part of the interview to make myself stand out to the ED Director? Just talk about my patient centered philosophy?


Even though it will be a paycut, I really want this job as I know it will give me a ton of valuable experience. I would honestly do it for free if I could maintain the same scope of practice and have the opportunity to learn and work alongside PAs/NPs/MDs/RNs etc and see their clinical decisions and interventions. Any advice or help would be appreciated.

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for most er tech positions they are looking for someone friendly, polite, and willing to do any task assigned and show up when they say they will. do those things and you will do well as a tech. it really is a great exposure to medicine. I did it in small facilities for 5 years and after a while was scheduled interchangeably with the nursing staff as they had taught me the majority of their skills with the exception of hanging blood and placing foleys. I did everything else including starting IVs, pushing meds, drawing blood, doing ekgs and neb txs, assisting in surgery, etc. This was the 80s though so the idea of "see one, do one": was still very much alive. good luck. I'm sure you will do fine.

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Im a borderline career ER tech here. Your responsibilities will vary greatly depending on state, and instituition, and will revolve around what "type" of tech they want you to be. If an EMT-B is required for the position, you will likely operate under that type of a scope, or less. We have pre-nursing students with no experience, and 20 year+ flight medics all doing relatively the same job. Occasionaly, tech positions are at the medic level, which explains things like nebs, meds, assisting with surgical procedures like EMED said (pretty sure he was a medic for most of his pre-PA career). See one, do one, is fading quickly. When I first started 10 years ago, I had a lot more opportunity to do all kinds of stuff. In today's litigious workplace, this is not as common. When I started, you were expected to reach out and do as much as possible. Now, you have to be careful what you touch or do. Thats fine though, just relaying a point. At a large level 1, you will NOT have very much leeway to freestyle, especially being new and having no experience.


That being said, you will get in my opinion the best HCE there is. Interview will be simple, short, and likely not very intense. Managers are looking for someone who will not call off, and will work hard. Imagine a McDonalds interview, with a little bit of vetting for responsibility. The turnover is high in this position (people moving on to other things), and they don't care if you really know your stuff or anything like that. Your position first and foremost will be getting vitals, dipping pee, and busting your a$$ in triage to move the meat. All the fancy stuff is gravy. However, I have had a tremendous amount of opportunity in this position. Being surrounded by residents allows all the teaching to "roll downhill", and so I get detailed explanations for all kinds of stuff just by being in a room full of students. I see procedures taught. I hear attendings sound out their reasonings for treatments. I teach all kinds of skills classes to nursing staff and residents alike. And on and on.


I just realized I answered questions that were not asked. Say you will work hard and treat patients well, and that you are excited to be in that environment. You can do the job with your experience, although it will take a while to get to a high level. Some of us have been doing it a long time, with all kinds of backgrounds. Don't worry about that. You should be a good fit, if you know how to work. Take a blue collar mentality into it. Nothing worse than an "uppity" pre-med or pre-pa.

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  • 2 weeks later...

It went well! The interview was very vanilla except that I was interviewed by both the ER director (a RN) and the lead tech at the same time. Questions were very straight forward along the lines of "tell me about a time you dealt with conflict" or "how do you deal with stress" etc. I start monday morning with my orientation full time. Sounds like the scope is limited to non-invasive procedures so no IVs or Foleys etc but I'm sure I'll learn a lot over the next year before I apply to schools.

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Great news! Work hard and learn stuff! I value my ER tech time over my time in the squad, ICU, shadowing, all of it. Find the experienced techs and try to be like them. You may not have a lot of official responsibilities but you can learn and do plenty by observing those around you.

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