How Long Does It Take to Become an EMT?


Quick Answer

It can take anywhere from one to two years to complete a post secondary non-degree award program for EMTs, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. In addition to an education program, an EMT must also earn his license.

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Full Answer

Educational programs for EMTs are offered at community colleges, technical institutes and emergency care training facilities. Such institutions may have EMT programs that last roughly 150 hours and instruct students on clearing airways, assessing patient conditions, handling cardiac emergencies and the proper use of field equipment. Students may receive instruction in a hospital or ambulance.

A student can also receive advanced EMT training and learn about medications, how to use intricate airway machines and IV fluids. Such programs can last approximately 300 hours. Future EMTs also have about eight hours of instruction on how to properly drive an ambulance, but it's not unusual for an emergency medical service to hire a separate driver.

To earn a license, EMTs must successfully complete a education program certified by the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians in addition to passing a national exam. Each state has its own requirements for licensure, but in most cases an individual who has NREMT certification is eligible.

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