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Georgia EMS Schools.

What to Expect as an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT)

An emergency medical technician deals with emergencies on a daily basis, and the one thing they can count on is to expect the unexpected. This is a high adrenaline job in which life and death situations are frequently faced. The emergency medical technician is often the first medical responder at the scene of a medical emergency, which requires that they are always prepared for anything.

Levelheaded During Stressful Situations

One of the most important qualities needed is the ability to remain calm and levelheaded under pressure. An EMT has to have the ability to deal with a high level of stress. Good enough physical condition to do a lot of bending and heavy lifting. An EMT has to be emotionally stable and capable of dealing with their own emotions when they come face to face with death.

Dealing with Down Time

At the other extreme is the fact that there will be "down time" between calls, and boredom is sometimes part of the job. Yet the EMT has to be ready to spring into action and alertness at a moment's notice.

Typical Scenarios

An emergency medical technician is usually dispatched after a person in an emergency situation calls 911. The EMT will frequently work with police and firefighters at the scene of an emergency. Incidents they may have to respond to include falls, auto accidents, heart attacks, child abuse, psychiatric crises, and medical episodes such as seizures or diabetic coma. Some other scenarios faced by emergency medical technicians are helping a woman who goes into labor and can't make it to the hospital, or assisting a child who has accidentally ingested a poisonous substance. The one thing that all these incidents have in common is a need for someone who can react quickly and with calmness and competence.

Most EMTs work in teams in which one drives the ambulance and one offers emergency care to the patient while in transit. EMTs communicate with hospital personnel to receive instructions regarding further treatment and to arrange for the arrival of the victim. Emergency personnel are required to be available around the clock, so work hours may be long and unpredictable.

Administer Medical Treatment

All EMTs receive training in how to handle basic emergencies, such as controlling breathing, administering oxygen, applying splints, treating allergic reactions, and performing CPR. They are required to know how to determine the extent of injury or illness so they can establish what procedures should be followed or whether additional help should be dispatched.


An entry level EMT is called an EMT-Basic. An EMT at this level has the skills necessary to treat emergencies and transport patients by ambulance to the hospital. With more training, the next level is EMT-Intermediate. Requirements to achieve this level vary from state to state. Often an EMT-Intermediate is trained to administer intravenous fluid and to use defibrillators to shock a stopped heart. The highest level of EMT is the EMT-Paramedic, more commonly known as just paramedic. This is the highest level of pre-hospital medical provider.

EMTs work for hospitals, fire departments, and private ambulance services. No matter where they work, each day offers new challenges and new opportunities to help others, and sometimes to even save lives.

List of Medical Technician Schools in Georgia

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