Your National EMS Certification is probably the most important EMS certification you can obtain. Holding your EMS certification demonstrates that you meet the national standards of the EMS profession. To ensure that all Emergency Medical Technicians are up-to-date on technical innovations in patient care and emergency medical services, certification must be renewed every two years.
EMTs are constantly learning, both on and off the field, in part because there will always be a situation or patient that presents issues you have never seen before, and in part because medicine and technology is continuously improving.
To apply for recertification you must meet the following requirements:
- Be actively working within the EMS field, using your EMT-Basic skills.
- Complete the educational requirements before the March 31st deadline.
- Complete the recertification report, and submit report before the March 31st deadline.
- Demonstrate EMS competency through re-examination or continuing education.
- Re-examination: Between October 1st and March 15th, complete a “Recertification by Examination” application. You will receive an Authorization to Test (sometimes referred to as ATT). From there, you can take the National EMS Certification exam.
- Continuing Education (CE): Complete the sufficient number of continuing education hours throughout the year to complete this section. This is a two-part deal:
Part I: The first part of meeting CE requirements is to complete an approved EMT Refresher. There are two options here. One option is to take a traditional refresher course (an approved DOT National Standard EMT-Basic/EMT Refresher). The second option it to complete continuing education “topical hours”. (Beware that some states only accept the traditional refresher course and not topical hours, so refer check your state requirements.) The “topical hours” must meet the following requirements:
Topic Hours Required Preparatory 1 hour Airway 2 hour OB, Infants, Children 2 hours Patient Assessment 3 hours Medical/Behavior 4 hours Trauma 4 hours Elective 8 hours Total 24 hours
Part II: The second part of meeting CE requirements is to complete 48 hours of additional EMS Related Continuing Education. You can apply the following towards your Additional Continuing Education hours:
24 hours can be applied from any one topic area (preferably something you are really interested in, and want to specialize in!)
16 hours can be applied from the following courses: ABLS, AMLS, BTLS, NALS, PEPP, PHTLS, PPC
12 hours can be applied from the following courses: Emergency Driving, Dispatch Training
24 hours of CECBEMS approved Distributive Education
24 hours of college courses including but not limited to: Anatomy/Physiology, Pharmacology, Cellular Biology, Chemistry, Psychology, Microbiology
Obviously the above add up to more than 48 hours. Feel free to pick and choose the areas that most interest you, and put your CE hours into them. In doing so, you will enjoy your Continuing Education, and you will be honing your EMS specialty – making you a highly desirable employee.
And there you have it! Follow steps 1 through 6 and you will be fully prepared to successfully pass NREMT recertification.