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Getting the most out of my EMT cert


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I am just finishing up my EMT cert.

 

I live in the Los Angeles area and there are 3 directions an EMT can go, 911 calls, inter-facility transfer, or ER tech.

 

I asked my EMT instructors what they thought is the best experience for pre PA and they said inter-facility transfer would be more relevant experience for a pre-PA than 911 and that getting an ER-tech position is tough unless you have some experience.

 

I did one of my ride alongs on Saturday and the duties of the EMT-B's were very limited:

- taking vitals

- moving patients from bed to gurney

- weighing patients

- helping patients up stairs

 

It was a very relaxed environment.  This ambulance company did not even have AED's on their rigs yet. (newer company??)

 

Meanwhile, people from class who did 911 calls in Compton were going to motor vehicle accidents and shootings.

 

I want to make sure that I am getting healthcare experience that is valuable to my education and relevant to the PA profession.

 

What do you guys think? Is inter-facility transfer a good job for pre-PA? Should I be doing 911 instead? Are there other jobs that an EMT-B can hold that would be more relevant?

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I don't see how IFT is more valuable than doing 911 calls. With 911 calls you'll be exposed to physically treating more trauma, psych, ob/gyn, cardio-pulmonary issues, the list goes on and on. With IFT, you'll be exposed to less with more being focused on transferring less "unstable" (and I use that term very lightly) compared to 911 calls.

 

My experience working as a nursing assistant is not comparable to an EMT but I got bored on med-surg and quickly jumped right into urgent care as a MA. Now I feel fulfilled and I am learning tons about different levels of acuity/medications/treatment plans/diagnosis/ddx etc.

 

If you don't feel like you're getting the most out of your experience, find something else. It's not about just accumulating hours, it's about what you're learning at the end of the day :).

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I don't see how IFT is more valuable than doing 911 calls. With 911 calls you'll be exposed to physically treating more trauma, psych, ob/gyn, cardio-pulmonary issues, the list goes on and on. With IFT, you'll be exposed to less with more being focused on transferring less "unstable" (and I use that term very lightly) compared to 911 calls.

 

My experience working as a nursing assistant is not comparable to an EMT but I got bored on med-surg and quickly jumped right into urgent care as a MA. Now I feel fulfilled and I am learning tons about different levels of acuity/medications/treatment plans/diagnosis/ddx etc.

 

If you don't feel like you're getting the most out of your experience, find something else. It's not about just accumulating hours, it's about what you're learning at the end of the day :).

 

So you were an EMT, CNA, and now an MA?  Did you go to courses for all three?  MA programs where I am at are a year long.  I chose EMT because I really wanted to learn basic life support, I haven't seen a PA program NOT list EMT as direct HCE, it was a 4 week accelerated course, and there are lots of cool volunteer opportunities such as ski patrol, search and rescue, big event emt, movie set emt.  Plus with experience ER-tech.  

Do 911. You will see more, do more, and develop confidence.

 

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Maybe I will look into one of these companies that do both IFT and 911.  Although 911 pays $10/hr while IFT pays $13-$14/hr.  I wonder why my EMT instructor recommended IFT.  He is well aware of all the different types of EMT jobs because he has done all of them and currently works as an ER-tech.

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ER tech>911>urgent care tech>interfacility>cna type hospital work

I was an emt in high school and worked as an ER tech and urgent care tech through college. also did some work as a phlebotomist.

went to paramedic school right out of college. best decision I ever made professionally-speaking

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ER tech>911>urgent care tech>interfacility>cna type hospital work

I was an emt in high school and worked as an ER tech and urgent care tech through college. also did some work as a phlebotomist.

went to paramedic school right out of college. best decision I ever made professionally-speaking

interesting.  Can an EMT-B work in an urgent care clinic?  If so, what are the requirements?  Urgent care is one of the specialties I am interested in.  I would assume urgent care work would be done by an MA rather than an EMT

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So you were an EMT, CNA, and now an MA?  Did you go to courses for all three? 

 

I am *was* a licensed EMT (will most likely let license lapse). I never wanted to work on a rig so I did the training for educational/learning purposes.

 

I used said license to work as a radiology aide and once I gained enough "hospital experience" I transferred to a different hospital to their med-surg unit. After realizing I was not learning enough, I transferred to urgent care and used said license as the backbone of my interview. An emt-b license is truly versatile. 

 

My title here is not Urgent Care Tech or EMT but rather MA. The only requirement they had was hospital experience and everything I do; injections, spirometry, audiometry, medication administration, rapid lab tests, ekgs, applying DMEs/ace wraps, ear lavages, wound care, suture removals, assisting with suturing/I&Ds, drug screens, etc were all on the job training.

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I am *was* a licensed EMT (will most likely let license lapse). I never wanted to work on a rig so I did the training for educational/learning purposes.

 

I used said license to work as a radiology aide and once I gained enough "hospital experience" I transferred to a different hospital to their med-surg unit. After realizing I was not learning enough, I transferred to urgent care and used said license as the backbone of my interview. An emt-b license is truly versatile. 

 

My title here is not Urgent Care Tech or EMT but rather MA. The only requirement they had was hospital experience and everything I do; injections, spirometry, audiometry, medication administration, rapid lab tests, ekgs, applying DMEs/ace wraps, ear lavages, wound care, suture removals, assisting with suturing/I&Ds, drug screens, etc were all on the job training.

thats pretty cool, what state are you in?

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I don't see how IFT is more valuable than doing 911 calls. With 911 calls you'll be exposed to physically treating more trauma, psych, ob/gyn, cardio-pulmonary issues, the list goes on and on. With IFT, you'll be exposed to less with more being focused on transferring less "unstable" (and I use that term very lightly) compared to 911 calls.

 

 

Maybe I will look into one of these companies that do both IFT and 911.  Although 911 pays $10/hr while IFT pays $13-$14/hr.  I wonder why my EMT instructor recommended IFT.  He is well aware of all the different types of EMT jobs because he has done all of them and currently works as an ER-tech.

 

 

Actually, I think it depends. If one knows that they're going into the PA profession with an emphasis of family practice/primary care, then I can see the value of IFTs. With IFTs, you really have to interact more with your patients, and care for them differently depending on their condition(s); (e.g. mental, physical, etc). You also have more time to get a glimpse of various diseases and their debilitating effects. Also, you'll start to understand the myriad list of Hx, Tx, and Rx your pt's will have as you will have to review their records while working IFTs. 911/emergency calls on the other hand, there really is no time for that in most scenarios. In an emergency setting, your top priority is making sure your pt's ABCs remain intact...treat, package, and go! 911/emergency calls are awesome, and requires a special skill-set I feel would be beneficial in the long-run as an E-Med PA, critical care, or surgical specialty PA.

 

I see the value in both, and depending where you want to go in your PA career, either can be beneficial.

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Actually, I think it depends. If one knows that they're going into the PA profession with an emphasis of family practice/primary care, then I can see the value of IFTs. With IFTs,you really have to interact more with your patients, and care for them differently depending on their condition(s) (e.g. mental, physical, etc). You also have more time to get a glimpse of various diseases and their debilitating effects. Also, you'll start to understand the myriad list of Hx, Tx, and Rx  your pt's will have as you will have to review their records while working IFTs. 911/emergency calls, there really is no time for that in most scenarios. In an emergency setting, your top priority is making sure your pt's ABCs remain intact...treat, package, and go! 911/emergency calls are awesome, and requires a special skill-set that I feel would be beneficial in the long-run as an E-med PA, critical care, or surgical specialty PA.

 

I see the value in both, and depending where you want to go in your PA career, either can be beneficial.

 

I completely agree with this! What are your goals with this experience? What do you want to gain from the experience in terms of knowledge? What type of medicine interests you? You will always gain more from an experience you are passionate about and that aligns with your goals.

 

Also there is no harm in applying for ER tech jobs if that's what you think best fits you. I knew that working as an EMT-B on the road was not for me as I get super carsick, especially when going priority 1 to a call, and that IFTs would not enable me to learn the medical skills I was eager to gain/practice. I was also told that it is super difficult to get an ER tech job, especially without much prior medical experience, however I was able to network my way into a position and I am super grateful I did. Do you do any clinical shifts in an ER or urgent care as part of your EMT course? Use the opportunity to demonstrate your interest in working there and to meet the people in charge of hiring. You would be surprised what people you have shadowed/briefly worked with will be willing to do for you.

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