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EMT experience question

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Hi everyone,

I'm currently planning my admissions strategy and I'm wondering how my EMT experience may be viewed by PA programs.  I have 6000+ hours working as a crew EMT (basic) on a hotshot wildland firefighting crew.  I follow standing orders, have an expanded scope of practice, and am responsible for the field care of 20 crew members. However, my primary role is still a firefighter and I don't treat the general public, only my teammates.  While I plan on gaining more traditional clinical experience, the ability to list these hours would be very beneficial.  I'm wondering if I will be able to list this as patient care experience, have to prorate it, or if it won't be acceptable at all.  I would guess it may be variable school to school, but does anyone have a general idea of how programs may look at this type of experience?  Thank you so much for any insight, I've been wondering about this for some time now.

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Like you said this will more than likely vary by school. Out of those 6000 hours, how many were actually spent providing EMT level care? The process of applying is somewhat part of an “honor system” when reporting your numbers, so you do want to be honest. Overall I think the hours you have spent providing care will be valuable to you in your application. 

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I agree with johncfl, those hours that you spent providing care are the important ones. However, this is a really unique one because there definitely aren't going to be that many applicants that worked as an EMT on a wildfire crew like that's pretty hardcore and you should definitely use your personal statement and any interviews to highlight that. I don't know any other background info about you but I'm gonna guess being an EMT for that crew really shaped your interest in being a PA. Definitely think about the defining moments you had working with them, the challenges of being a provider in that kind of environment, and some of the things you learned/experienced in that role that someone on a standard rig that tends to the general public wouldn't see on a normal day. Like I said, that job sounds wicked hardcore and could make your application stand out

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