Emergency Medical Science (EMS) is an education in a branch of medicine that focuses on having a general knowledge in many other fields of medicine and the capacity to provide emergency care to critically ill or injured patients in order to stabilize them for further care. The professionals within this discipline are sought for many positions in the healthcare field, such as: ambulance services, flight crews, emergency rooms, urgent cares, doctor’s offices, and more. The opportunities in emergency medicine are as diverse as the skills these professionals provide.
What’s An EMT? Are They the Same As Paramedics?
There are three levels in the emergency medical field: Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), Advanced Emergency Medical Technician (AEMT), and Paramedic. Each level is a versatile and adept healthcare provider with an expanding set of skills and knowledge as students climb up the different levels. The primary difference between each level is the amount of education and the skills they are able to perform.
- EMTs are the entry–level patient care provider. EMTs are the most common and are the first step in progressing in the field. The term “entry;” however, does not mean that they do not provide important interventions. This course will teach the most fundamental, but most critical skills and knowledge students will need to perform patient care. This course is the foundation to which the other levels are built upon. Students will be able to test for the both the state and national level certification upon completion. CVCC offers a curriculum course (college credit), a continuing education course (fee-waiver available), and an option for rising high school students.
- AEMTs are the next step from EMTs. Advanced level care begins here with the capacity to perform higher level skills in airway management and drug administration. The skills and drugs learned in this program are extensions from the EMT course. AEMTs play are more integral part in patient care in most of the emergency medicine setting by being able to provide a higher level of care when needed. CVCC has a program that will culminate with a diploma and the ability to test for your AEMT certification.
- Paramedics provide the most advanced level of care out of all three levels. They have the most amount of education and are able to perform a number of skills and drugs that far exceed the other two levels. They are trained to be team-leaders and work autonomously to make decisions about the patient’s needs and carry out those decisions. Their education includes a large number of hours in the field to hone skills and become familiar with many facets of the healthcare field. CVCC has a proud history of offering an accredited Associate of Applied Science degree for those seeking to become paramedics.
How Does One Become an EMT, AEMT, or Paramedic?
- Meet all the eligibility requirements and prerequisites for the chosen program.
- Register for the desired course or program.
- Attend and successfully complete the course or program.
- Take and pass the state or National Registry test to obtain certification.
Once certification is obtained, students find employment in a variety of places and function as an EMT, AEMT, or paramedic.
If I’m Already a Paramedic, Can I Earn a Degree?
Yes. CVCC is offering an Emergency Medical Science Paramedic Advancement Certificate program for those who already have their valid paramedic credential. This program is mostly online and, after proving proficiency, students will be able to take a fewer number classes to earn their degree. The courses in the program are designed for professionals in the field and will offer advanced medical education and the option to take a management or trainer course.
Please see the catalog for more information about the degree option in this curriculum.
- Emergency Medical Science, AAS
- Emergency Medical Science, Health Science Therapeutic and Diagnostic Service Diploma
- Emergency Medical Science Paramedic Advancement Certificate
- Emergency Medical Science Certificate Certificate High School Pathway
- Emergency Medical Science Certificate Pathway 2
For more information about the EMS program, contact:
EMS Program Director
(828) 327-7000, ext. 4347
For questions regarding admissions requirements, contact:
EMS Admissions and Advising
(828) 327-7000, ext. 4216