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The average salary of paramedics is between USD 21,000 to USD 40,000 and like most medical jobs, it varies, depending on experience, job location, and the organization you work for.
Paramedics are generally the first point of contact for patients who need emergency medical help. They work under different work settings and their job description, as well as salary depends on this. Most of them work for hospitals, fire departments, and airlines. To practice as a paramedic, you are required to clear the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians certification exam. The salary scale also depends on this certification.
Paramedics are different from Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs), in the sense that they can administer medicines to patients in medical situations, unlike an EMT. In earlier times, people used to refer to them as ambulance drivers, but due to media coverage and TV channels showcasing serials based on their lives, the general population now knows about the scope of services provided by them.
One should at least have a high school diploma to become a paramedic. Then, you need to enroll in a basic EMT course, which is offered by many community colleges and training institutes. This is a two-year course. Upon successful completion, you need to take the EMT intermediate training, which can last anywhere between 30 – 350 hours.
When you complete the Intermediate program, you can enroll in an EMT paramedic program which takes 1 – 2 years. In the program, you will be taught advanced pharmacology and anatomy, etc. In most states, only a paramedic can administer intravenous medication and can perform advanced airway clearing and pain management procedures. Upon completion of the program, you are required to complete the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technician certification exam, to work as a certified professional.
The paramedic is the first healthcare professional to reach a patient in a medical emergency. The first thing they do is assess the patient’s condition by asking certain investigative questions or by physically examining the patient. They record the vital signs and record the patient’s medical history, whenever possible.
Paramedics provide advanced first aid for injuries such as broken bones, burns, invasive wounds, and cuts. They administer medication, IVs, and bandage wounds. They are also required to relay the patient’s condition to the doctor in the emergency room. They are also trained to perform airway management and help stabilize patients who need respiratory support. This includes, for example, patients suffering from heart attack and severe shock. They are also trained to operate defibrillators and read electrocardiographs.
The average salary is between USD 21,000 to USD 40,000 annually. These professionals provide a lifesaving service and are compensated well for this. With experience, the salary figures can go upwards of USD 50,000 annually.
The average salary of an EMT paramedic, for most states, is around USD 26,000 to USD 41,000, and in some metropolitan areas like New York, the salary is USD 77,000. In Los Angeles, the salary is around USD 66,000 annually.
Paramedics are also employed by the fire fighting department and the average salary at the entry-level is USD 22,000. The salary is mostly dependent on the experience of the candidate and the geographical location of the job. Paramedic firefighters in California make around USD 48,000.
Airlines also need to employ these professionals and the average salary of flight paramedics is USD 44,000 annually. A flight paramedic in California will make around USD 48,000 annually and in New York the salary is around USD 56,000 annually.
The average salary is expected to rise in the coming years, because of the expected growth in the healthcare industry. According to sources, the outlook for this medical job is bright, with more than average growth in this decade.