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Have a full time job already but interested in EMT

Discussion in 'Firefighter/EMS Talk' started by thertel, Dec 3, 2006.

  1. thertel

    thertel

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    Hi,

    I've been interested in being a EMT since high school and just never made the decision to go that route earlier in life, but now was wondering if it is possible to to get certified and just volunteer for with an organization locally? Also how does one go about getting certified, can I just take the specific classes and study my butt off and do the clinicals or does it have to be setup like a degree? I'm in the Stephenville, TX area.

    Thanks,

    Thomas
     
  2. Tvov

    Tvov

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    Assuming you have volunteer EMS (ambulance) in your area, simply contact them for information. They will probably be most happy to hear from you. Also, they will tell you exactly what classes you need, and depending on how they are set up may pay all your expenses related to classes.
     

  3. thertel

    thertel

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    We do have a few of those around here. I'll give them a call, thanks for the good idea.
     
  4. ShotGlass

    ShotGlass

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    It is great that you want to get involved in EMS, but I would get involved with career department ,and get my experience that way. Most volly squads have low call volume, and minimal training. Getting in with career personnel is definately the way to go!
     
  5. Tvov

    Tvov

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    He is asking about volunteering. Can you volunteer with a paid department? From what little I know, that is against union rules.
     
  6. thertel

    thertel

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    Heck if its a union thing I'll pay dues based off of my wages. 5% of $0 is still $0. I've got some leads locally after making a few calls and hope to have something worked out soon.
     
  7. 4095fanatic

    4095fanatic

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    Btw, EMT should consist of about 130 hours of instruction... either a 3 week crash course or a 3-6 month college format class (2 or 3 days a week, a weekend here and there).
     
  8. Joey

    Joey Millennium Member

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    What do you call "low call volume" the 2nd busiest fire department in the nation is a volunteer fire department, that's not "career" but a extremely professional volunteer fire department & they run EMS.

    When you say "career" do you mean IAFF??

    The VFD just to the south of my VFD runs over 1K calls a year & we have ran over 530 calls so far this year.

    About 80% are medical.

    Figure out how many calls that is on an average a month, the local "career" guys do not get that much experience.

    I'd rather have the VFD EMT's round these parts work me or my family than the "career" IAFF EMT's and Paramedics as round here they can go a week or more without making a run since they work 24's and less than 10 days a month.

    Next up, what the F are you talking about when you say "minimal training" as it does not matter one iota if you are paid IAFF, paid on call or a Volley the requirements are EXACTLY the same to earn your NREMT EMT and to keep it.

    Round here state EMT is 160 hours of classroom and then ya have to do clinicals with both the ER and the local ambulance service. If you are a "career" EMT you must undergo the exact same state classes that the volly EMT's in the state do.

    NREMT requirements are the same no matter where you are, you either qualify for your NREMT cert or you do not & to recertify it takes the exact same number of CE hours for a Volly or a "career" guy.
     
  9. ShotGlass

    ShotGlass

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    Sounds like a SOUR VOLLIE to me! Now, I don't know for sure what vollie company is the second busiest in the nation, but if you mean Kentland...try again! they are volunteers, but most of them are ON THE JOB in DC, or maryland...so calling them vollies is a bit misleading. As for prefering vollies compared to Career staff, that seems silly. Also, what you fail to realize is that the vollie attitude is too prevalent in MOST volunteer departments. I think the IAFF does great work, and their members are some of the best firefighters out there. All I know, is that Vollies, for the most part, lower the standards, and drag down wages for professional minded EMS personnel! Don't worry, I know there are some good vollies, but they are BY FAR the exception!
     
  10. Tvov

    Tvov

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    LOL

    Sounds like a typical SOUR PAID guy to me! Also, what I think you fail to realize is that the paid attitude is too prevalent in MOST paid departments.

    Does this sound at all silly to anyone else?

    ShotGlass, attitudes like yours are a big part of the problem with relations between volunteer firefighters and paid career firefighters. I don't know a whole lot about the IAFF, but doesn't it say somewhere in their constitution that there shouldn't be volunteer fire deparments in the United States? Keeping in mind that full-time, paid fire departments are a MINORITY in the United States?

    The original poster asked about volunteering with a local organization. As I previously posted, I don't think someone can volunteer with a paid department, especially if it is IAFF (which most paid departments are).

    Also, I love you signature! Maybe I should make one up:

    "Paid departments: You get what you pay for! (which according to them is never enough!)"

    But no, I won't have that as a signature. That strikes me as immature and unnecessarily aggravating.


    I just realized something after I made this post. ShotGlass's post isn't for real, is it? A troller got me!
     
  11. D25

    D25 The Quick

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    Wow, comin' right in and making friends! I would think that a dip**** who carries coveralls in his POV so he can respond to MVAs and has turned his POV into a Ricky Rescuemobile would not talk trash about the incredible level of detication that it take to be a volly. And a question for you there smartass, how are people supposed to get the experience necessary to become a career FF if they don't volunteer? Your pipe dream says that you just hop into a career dpt., but here in the real world, 2006, that isn't how things work. If for some reason that is how it worked for you, then be thankfull that I didn't apply for the job that you got- the experience that I got as a volunteer made me a damn good FF and laid the foundation for me to be a good paramedic and I sure as hell would be collecting the paycheck that you say you're getting. But that point is moot, because your posts are full of contradictions, and that means that some of them are lies. I wholeheartedly disbelieve that you collect a paycheck as a FF, and doubt that your even a volly. Either way, I'd rather be a good, honest volunteer that is learning and contributing to his/her community than a liar troll.
     
  12. Joey

    Joey Millennium Member

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    Sour Vollie eh, guess if that's how ya have to categorize it so your feelers ain't hurt be my guest.

    However, the truth is the truth no matter how ya try and rationalize it.

    If Kentland fire department is ran by Volunteers who get paid from ANOTHER department but VOLUNTEER thier time and services at Kentland then guess what, they are VOLUNTEERING at Kentland & are NOT paid firefighters at Kentland
    :tongueout: :tongueout: :tongueout:

    thertel, ignore the crap slinging and bull talking as it's worthless and nothing but dribble.

    I know some SUPERB paid IAFF career firefighters who came from the vollie service and ya know what, they are outstanding firefighters. Ya get what ya put into the fire service & if you want to be a Fire MEdic than by all means join a VFD, get your EMT and learn the fire side as well as the EMS, all it can do is make you a better person & a better Fire/Medic:thumbsup: :thumbsup: :supergrin: :supergrin:
     
  13. thertel

    thertel

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    I appreciate the good input Joey, it is nice to have at least a little.

    Thomas
     
  14. Lynn D

    Lynn D Bullseye?

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    What bullseye?
    I just started an EMT-B course in October. Wanted to do it since college....a long time ago now! Now, I'm an RN and folks wonder why I didn't "bridge" to paramedic. Wanted to make sure I like it before I do all the work for paramedic. So far so good.

    I live in a fairly large city with a lot of suburban vollie agencies. Schooling is paid for if you sign on with a vollie. I polled some of the EMS folks and nurses I know before I made my choice. I chose to go to one that is all vollie and only EMT-B. I'll have to call out for ALS as needed -- well covered, so no biggie. We have several agencies that have both paid and vollie staff. I know of at least 2 of them. These are EMS only, though, not a combined EMS/Fire situation.

    So, yeah, it's doable. I say have at it and enjoy. Best wishes to ya.

    Lynn
     
  15. FirNaTine

    FirNaTine

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    I'll chime in on this. I was a volunteer firefighter / EMT-B for four years prior to getting hired by a career department. I am still affiliated with the volunteer department and run occasionally, however the wife and an infant, plus OT and part time, and finishing my NREMT-I to NREMT-P bridge leaves little time volunteer right now.

    As far as training, in my experience it is NOT the same. The certifications you get are the same, but the time spent on it was not. I had my national FFII prior to entering the academy but had to retake FFI/FFII,Rescue Tech,Haz Mat,EVDIS, and terrrorism training in the academy. The volunteer training meets minimum standards for certification but the career training was a lot more in depth. For example we spent a week each on hose evolutions, ground ladder evolutions, SCBA evolutions, and rope skills. Not counting morning physical training and other daily activities that was 120 hrs on just four aspects of the job. We had over a week of burning evolutions broken up into blocks. Overall it was figured that as a volunteer we would have spent about 250 hrs to get the cards we came out with, but we spent anout 550 hrs getting the training. And my volunteer training was good. I was trained by experienced instructors with MFRI (Maryland Fire and Rescue Institute) who develops the training used by many states throughout the nation, as well as the FF training done by the Department of Defense.

    EMS training ran a similar course. To be brief I was a little past halfway getting my EMT-P before getting hired and had to start over by the time I got to resume it last year. The amount of time I have spent in clinical practice this time compared to last has been multiples more. And it doesn't stop once you are trained. For example after all initial training was complete and I had obtained my license, I had to complete 10-24hr shifts under another provider to be released on my own. The unit I was on averaged 10-12 runs a shift. So I handled about 100+ calls before being released. As a volunteer I would have had to handle 10 calls before being released.

    I don't mean this to slam volunteers, but MY experience has been that most volunteers simply do not have the time to go significantly beyond the minimums required in training. Yes all of our cards read the same, and we have completed the same minimum training but the career departements I have knowledge of all go well beyond the minimums.

    As far as activity levels, that varies by region. And if you are claiming Kentland is the second busiest company in the country you have bought their propaganda. I know, I work with several of the members including their chief. They list all the runs by their station which includes 2 engines and a mini-pumper that runs mostly medical calls as their engine stats. Even with this I believe they still were only 3rd(maybe worse) in the country behind career engines that run their calls with ONE engine. So for example DC Engine 10 (second I believe) runs ~6000 calls with 1 engine and one crew at a time and Kentland was close but behind with 3 pieces. Obviously if they only listed the response stats of their single busiest engine they wouldn't be anywhere near the top of the list. And don't forget they only list the single busiest from a dept., so if LA has companies at 6150, 6225, 6300 runs only the busiest make the list even if the the third busiest engine there may have been the busier than than number 2 on the list. As far as my self I was a busy volunteer and had probably 600 combined fire and EMS calls in my busiest year as a volunteer, but in my first full year as a career firefighter I ran over 1200 calls.

    Being a volunteer can be a good place to start, but if you are considering pursuing a career in EMS I would seek out career providers and get local advice on it.

    Good luck with whatever you decide.
     
  16. kc4zgk

    kc4zgk

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    You might want to contact your local EMS provider about part time work, here in Georgia ( depending on the county ) we have ambulance companies who all have part time employees ( as needed ) that pay around $15.00 an hour for EMT-I. Georgia does not recognize EMT-B's to man a transport truck. I will chime in on the volly vs. full time training discussion to add that my department is a part time / paid on call department ( Roswell, GA. pop 95,000 ) we have 160 firefighters and may work up to 216 hours per month ( 12 hour and 24 hour shifts ) I work the maximum my self on nights and weekends as well as having a full day time job. Our training for NPQ FF-1 was a little over 400 hours Our First Responder class was 130 hours and my current EMT-I class will be 312 hours + 36 hours of clinicals + 36 hours on a ambulance. Now only around 20 of us are not career firefighters but my department runs 6500-7000 calls per year out of 6 stations with 3 of those running the bulk. I drive a rescue ( non - transport ambulance )and see around 900-1000 calls a year. not to bad but enough to keep you busy. As far as recurring training goes we have 9-12 hours per month so... Every department is different so it's probably best not to state one is better than the other until you take training / shift hours worked / call volume run into account. Just my 2 cents. Respectfully... as always.... Ed
     
  17. Tvov

    Tvov

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    FirNaTine, thanks for your intelligent and respectful response. You obviously have been on (and are still doing) "both sides of the aisle". I will listen to someone like you.

    We have a bunch of career firefighters in my department. They are very well trained, know what they are doing, experienced, and I would go into a fire with them. They contribute a lot to our volunteer department, and put as much time in helping as they are able with their jobs and family.

    thertel, sorry about your thread getting a little off track here.
     
  18. FirNaTine

    FirNaTine

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    No problem. I try to stay away from the political aspects of career vs. volunteer. There are good and bad on both sides. As a career firefighter I have worked with some great volunteers who unless you look closely at their uniform insignia you couldn't tell the difference them and the rest of the crew they were riding with. They are ones who have chosen to go beyond the minimums, and take the initiative to learn, practice, and behave like a professional. (Don't tell my union brothers please.)

    As with many things in life, you have to judge the individual not the group. Unfortunately there are some volunteers out there who choose to do the bare minimums, and take the attitiude of "What are they gonna do, take a zero off of my check?" They bring a rep that is hard to shake. On the other hand there are those like my cousin who is volunteer firefighter and occasional medic, who in a pinch would be one of the first I would have work on anybody. Why? Not because he's a relative, but because he has been a medic since I was baby, graduated I believe first in each his RN, BSN, and PA-C programs.

    By the way I know several EMS people who went on to become PA's, so I would advise all EMS students keep a close eye on your GPA even if you think you may not continue on beyond paramedic. Yes as long as you graduate and pass your exams everybody wears the same patch , but you may change your mind later. My paramedic program is ~50 credits in a related career field so a good GPA helps to keep your options open later when you get older. I know I don't plan to be carrying 350lb people down the steps at 2am forever.

    We now return to your previuos thread.....
     
  19. Joey

    Joey Millennium Member

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    That's what the fire department is for :supergrin: :supergrin: :supergrin: :supergrin:
     
  20. DScottHewitt

    DScottHewitt EMT-B

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    The majority of our area is served by volunteers. The County fire department has six (maybe seven by now) people on each shift (24/48 rotation). Captain, LT, rest firefighters/EMS. They also provide day time personnel in about four departments and two rescue squads. The rest of us volunteer. Our agency is not EMS, but the ten or so people we have EMS trained mostly are affiliate members with our neighboring department. I have been a "contractor" with the County for a year or so now helping with Fire and EMS classes. I don't do it for the few extra hundred I make a year. I do it because I love it and love helping turn out the best trained people we can provide to our citizens.


    Scott