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Breaking down EMT hours for PCE and HCE


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Hi everyone, long time lurker first time poster. I am getting everything ready to begin my application when this next cycle opens up and have researched just about everywhere I can to find a correct answer to my question without luck. I apologize in advance for the length of the post.

First off a little background. I worked as a full time emt/firefighter for 4.5 years before I returned to school to finish my degree last year. I have close to 8500 total on shift hours logged. I have read several conflicting answers as to whether I include all of those under PCE or if they get broken down into PCE or HCE. From the CASPA website it almost seems like they want you to break it down but it is still unclear. Several EMT's or paramedics have posted that they put all on shift hours down as PCE but then I would have 0 hours for HCE. I feel some schools could see that as a lie from me trying to claim them all as PCE. I would obviously like as many PCE hours down as possible but want to know what you guys think is right? All PCE? Or do I try my best to break it down? ( it will be extremely difficult for me to truly break down how many hours I was working directly with a patient between all of the different calls with varying lengths of time and many patients that I treated on scene but didn't take to the hospital etc.) Where I worked we were very busy all the time and 96% of our calls were medical related so I am confident I was working directly with patients over 60% of the shift. To be on the safe side, I'm considering just taking 1/3 of my total hours and designating them HCE and that would still leave me with over 5500 PCE hours. 

Anyway, just looking at suggestions or even better what some of you other EMT or paramedics put down.

Thanks!

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When I applied, I think I may have called all of my hours PCE but it's been 18 years since I applied. I think that whatever system you use can be defended.

You could, for example, use a duty cycle model: you could guesstimate how much time you spent not on calls (in station or on fire runs), use that fraction for PCE, and then call the rest HCE. 

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5 hours ago, UGoLong said:

You could, for example, use a duty cycle model: you could guesstimate how much time you spent not on calls (in station or on fire runs), use that fraction for PCE, and then call the rest HCE. 

That's what I did: estimated the number of EMS calls I ran per year, multiplied by 1.5 hours per call, multiplied by number of years I had.  Called that patient care experience.  Called the remainder of on-shift hours HCE for paid shifts, nothing for the remainder of vollie shifts.  I had close to 30 years in when I applied to PA school, so both were large numbers.  I never got any questions about it - essentially I think I checked the "lots" box on PCE.

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5 hours ago, EMEDPA said:

It's all PCE. Do nurses have to estimate how much time they spend on breaks or at pot lucks? No. If you are at work as a medic it all counts. I was a medic x 5 years. I reported 10-12 24 hr shifts/mo x 12 months x 5 years. 

If I go that route and have 0 HCE listed does that hurt me? Or does the 8500 PCE offset pretty much everything else?

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On 4/17/2021 at 3:34 PM, EMEDPA said:

It's all PCE. Do nurses have to estimate how much time they spend on breaks or at pot lucks? No. If you are at work as a medic it all counts. I was a medic x 5 years. I reported 10-12 24 hr shifts/mo x 12 months x 5 years. 

I did similar calculations for the amount of time I worked as a medic.  It turned out to be a ton of hours.  I don't think anyone batted an eye.  Discussing with program admin after graduating I got the impression that the hours I listed were considered quite favorably in the decision to offer me a seat.

Edited by dmdpac
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