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paramedics vs EMT

Discussion in 'Firefighter/EMS Talk' started by jaxxx, Feb 21, 2006.

  1. jaxxx

    jaxxx

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    Im looking on doing something in the health field in my career and I would like to hear some suggestions on what field I could look into.
     
  2. hotpig

    hotpig IAFF Local 4766 CLM

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    I work per diem as a Paramedic for a Hospital based County funded Ambulance Service. I'm overpaid 80% of the time and way under paid the rest.

    I work about three twelve hour shifts every two weeks. It gives me a decent amount of play money aside from my Fire job.

    Many of the full time people regret wasting time with the Paramedic program. In the time it has taken them to get a EMS job they could have just about finished the RN program.

    We have lost about half of our Medics this way. My old partner told me that he could not see himself working for 17.00 per hour on the ambulance the rest of his life. Now he is working for one of those Nurse Staffing companies for 45.00 per hour.
     

  3. Glkster19

    Glkster19

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    I agree. With the new ciriculum here in MI, you can almost complete the RN program in the same time frame. Avg starting pay for a medic here is probably closer to $8-10/hr vs. $21-24 for an RN unless you work for an agency as stated above. Unless you get a gov't job as a medic, you will never come close to what you could make as an RN plus there are so many more opportunities as an RN. Don't like ICU, go to the ER. Don't like ER go surgery, don't like surgery then check out woound services, etc. As a medic, it's like this: Don't like this service, go to that service. Same crap, different uniform and different color ambulance. If it wasn't for the fact I'm almost 40 and fairly close to retirement, I'd consider nursing school. For me, it would probably be a pay cut or close to it and then start all over with retirement. Like the above poster, I too work for a hospital based service a few days a pay period and they happen to be a good paying service. I will say that working for a hospital based service is great because they basically let us work as RN's. Drastic increase of what you can see/do in the ER vs. in the field.
     
  4. hotpig

    hotpig IAFF Local 4766 CLM

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    I have learned a lot more working in the ER than I could have ever learned working just on the truck.
     
  5. Tecumseh

    Tecumseh Libertarian

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    Thats shameful that they do not pay you guys more. I can only imagine some of the hazards faced as a nurse. I would imagine your jobs put you in a lot more dangerous situations. I have no expereience as either but I still think you guys are a very important and vital role to the medical community.
     
  6. jaxxx

    jaxxx

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    yea I been there and done the whole RN program...i seriously was about to loose my mind...came to a piont and realized that my health and sanity was more important that going through the program right now....maybe I can find another RN program that I might get into but I would never go back to that one I was in. I've spoken to different student from different nursing schools and it was hard but not as hard as mine.

    I might be looking into a PTA, respiratory therapist, LPN, or maybe even a dental hygeinist

    what do you guys think?
     
  7. hotpig

    hotpig IAFF Local 4766 CLM

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    Some places have bridge programs from LPN to RN. It may be a good stair step for you. I would just buckle down and do the RN if I ever decide to go back to school.
     
  8. DaleGribble

    DaleGribble Sandwich!

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    If you're thinking about becoming a paramedic, think about something else.

    I can tell you now that this is not the job you want. You'll make crap for a wage, you'll be looked at like a red headed step child by most of the people in the medical community and you'll spend the majority of your time dealing with patients that don't need an ambulance!

    Like the others said, go for the RN, you'll make a lot more money, get treated better and have an easier life!
     
  9. jaxxx

    jaxxx

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    hows a physical theraphy assistant?
     
  10. RLDS45S

    RLDS45S

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    This is the most loaded question in the world! There are intangibles related to working in EMS. There is an autonomy that is not present in the hospital! There are times when I long to be back on the street full time running calls. I mean I work less hours as a RN and I make a lot more $ then I ever did or could as a medic. I did not mind the 24 hr shifts, the missed meals, or the holidays. EMS is 24/7/365.

    Granted 95 percent of the time EMS is not a butt tightening experience. But, that 5 percent of the time it is put up or shut up.

    The best time of my life was having saved cardiac arrest victim help my partner and myself extricate a couple of victims from a MVC. Talk about what comes around! All the while his wife was yelling at him!:)

    A person has to be happy in life! You may never get rich as an EMS provider, but sometimes the rewards are more then pile of money could ever buy!

    But, the best advice is use EMS as stepping stone to furthering yourself in another area of health care!
     
  11. jaxxx

    jaxxx

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    its easier said than done saying that you want to go through the RN program...I actually have been there done it..I been a pretty smart student all my life...I had a 3.6 GPA until i got into the RN program and killed me...it wasnt worth my loosing my health and sanity over the program I was in and Im only 23..anyways..I might look into a resp theraphy..or radiation theraphy..maybe even PTA
     
  12. SargeRN

    SargeRN

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    Sounds like we have a LOT of been there done that folks here! I too have been the gaunlet with a new twist thrown in. I also spent 20 years in the US Army as a Medic! The last year before I retired flying as a medic with a MAST unit. Seemed the logical follow on was to a EMT. Well after becoming a NREMT-I and an Instructor was spending more time working, 40 hour weeks and 20 hours OT ALL THE TIME, than anything else. Decided I wanted to go to Nursing school and did! Well that was 11 years ago and I've worked everyting from OR to ER then ICU and now back to the ER! Seems like EMS gets in your blood and never goes away. As far as the age discussion goes I was 42 when I went back to Nursing school and have NEVER regretted it at all!
    If Nursing is something you want to do GO FOR IT and don't look back!

    Sarge
     
  13. JGinzo

    JGinzo

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    I am a union firefighter paramedic with a South Florida fire department and I love my job. I can't think of doing anything else and I would encourage anyone to do it. But then again my experience my be the exception and not the norm especially if working for a private company.
     
  14. D25

    D25 The Quick

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    I love it. I am/was a FF as well, so that helps out in terms of $ and variety. But then again, I just got laid off, and today is my last shift. Next stop- a private EMS provider, but they do extensive air transport, so again, that helps out in the $ and variety. We'll see...
     
  15. jaxxx

    jaxxx

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    may I ask how much an avg salary is?
     
  16. JGinzo

    JGinzo

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    Average starting pay for Firefighter/Paramedic for Fire Dept is around $42000
     
  17. G21FAN

    G21FAN Useless loser Millennium Member

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    If you are considering a Paramedic career, read first the burnout thread in this forum.
     
  18. DScottHewitt

    DScottHewitt EMT-B

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    Thought this was going to be another fued thread. LOL. But wait, give it time.....

    I have always thought in the back of my head I would like to move up to ALS at some point. But I do have a concern. I have actually myself seen ALS people forget BLS stuff when that was all that was really needed. I am scared I might do the same.

    On the other hand, a great CT from our first due agency (Stuarts Draft Rescue Squad) took EXCELLENT care of my dad the morning he went to AMC two weeks before he passed. And it was all BLS stuff. (With a shot of TLC thrown in.)


    Scott


    ;b
     
  19. Lynn D

    Lynn D Bullseye?

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    What bullseye?
    Currently RN working in an ED boarding unit. Wanted to do EMS when I was in college, but didn't have a car (all the local agencies were vollies). Now in mid-size city, and am considering EMT as a start. I've only been a nurse for 2 years (this is my 3rd career), and like the idea of pre-hospital.

    While I know there are "bridge" programs for RN-paramedic, I think I'd rather do a basic EMT first, then move on and up if I need/want to.

    Thoughts? Comments?

    Lynn
     
  20. kevin101

    kevin101

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    I was an EMT for 6 years. I never got paid more than 8 bucks an hour. I thought about going through the paramedic program but couldn't justify the hours of class plus working all the crazy hours my company scheduled. 10 years ago when my wife got pregnant with our first daughter I got out of EMS and got a boring factory job but I doubled my pay and have had a normal schedule ever since. My wife on the other hand went through LPN school and has been working at a medical office and loves it. I've thought about going to school for RN but working full time and having 2 young girls, I don't think I have the time. I'm 38 now and it's time to figure what I want to do real quick.