How to Become An EMT In Houston – A Complete Guide
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For anyone interested in becoming a first responder, An EMT, or Emergency Medical Technician, provides life-saving medical services to those in need while transporting patients to nearby hospitals for further evaluation and treatment. The work an EMT performs during emergencies is often the difference between survival and more serious conditions. As one of the largest cities in the United States, Houston has a major need for quality EMTs. There are different levels of EMTs, each with different levels of education and training requirements.
An EMT, also referred to as a paramedic provides care for those who are either sick or injured and in an emergency setting. In teams of two or three (depending on the situation), one EMT drives an ambulance while the other one or two paramedics work on a patient as the patient is transported to a hospital or other medical facility. Prior to transporting the patient, an EMT Houston professional will stabilize the individual to make sure he or she is capable of being transported. Once stabilized and transported to the hospital, the patient will be discharged to the hospital, where nurses, doctors, and other medical staff members will take over the patient.
For those individuals who are interested in how to become an EMT in Houston, it does not take a long, grueling stay in medical school, which makes it an excellent starting job for anyone looking to work in the medical field. Many EMTs move on to become firefighters and other professionals within the medical industry.
EMT Requirements In Houston
For anyone interested in how to become an EMT in Houston, it is necessary to first obtain either a high school diploma or GED. Additionally, it is necessary to have a CPR certificate to apply as well. From here, there are a few different levels of EMT courses in Houston, each of which brings about a slight increase in educational requirements. However, the further up in EMT training in Houston a person goes, the more money they are able to receive on the job, and it makes them more desirable as a hire.
EMTs are broken down into three different categories: EMT – Basic, EMT – Intermediate and a paramedic (EMT – Advanced). Those with an EMT – Basic certification will likely remain behind the wheel of an ambulance while those with more advanced training will work with patients.
In order to obtain an EMT – Basic training certification, it takes generally one semester. Many local schools and community colleges offer specific EMT training courses. Someone interested in obtaining an EMT – Intermediate certificate will need to remain in school for two semesters (or one regular school year). Lastly, a paramedic certificate takes three semesters. While three semesters is a year and a half of traditional schooling, those interested in receiving their paramedic certification can take summer courses, in order to obtain the certificate in a full calendar year.
For individuals who attend a local community college in Houston for their EMT certification, it is possible to add on a few additional classes along with the paramedic school in Houston program in order to not only receive their paramedic certificate but also their associate’s degree as well. Depending on what the person’s desire is after they become an EMT Houston professional, this may help open up additional medical and professional doors.
EMT Schools and Training in Houston
When interested in becoming an EMT in Houston, there’s no need to leave the city. With several exceptional training facilities and schools in and around metro Houston, there are plenty of opportunities available.
1. Houston Community College
At HCC, an EMT – Basic training program is offered. This is made up of five credit hours, although 10 hours a week worth of class work (seven hours of labs and three hours of lectures). All work is directly supervised by teachers and instructors who have clinical experience.
The program itself is a single semester. The course is “Emergency Medical Technician – Basic Certificate.” In order to enroll in the class, individuals must have a high school diploma/GED and a CPR license.
For students interested in a paramedic certificate, HCC offers this in a two-year course (where an associate’s degree is offered at the completion of the course). In order to complete the paramedic training at HCC, students will put in 66 credit hours, with the overall program length lasting four semesters (so it is possible to complete the training in a year and a half if attending summer school).
Tuition, not including book, required and uniforms for the EMT basic training in Houston is $1,632 for in-district students. For those who live in the state but are out of the district, this tuition increases to $3,360 (all tuition number for HCC and all other programs are up to date as of 2017).
As is the case with the other community colleges listed, financial aid opportunities are available (some of the stand-alone technical training facilities do not have financial aid opportunities, although the upfront cost is usually lower before financial aid). The HCC website provides information on different financial aid options. The online chat service offered through the website also makes it possible to connect with the financial aid department, without needing to stop by the facility or place a phone call.
3100 Main Street, Houston TX 77002
(713) 718 – 7694
2. San Jacinto Community College
The SJCC EMT basic training in Houston course is broken down into two different options. The first is the EMT – Basic, which is a total of 64 lecture hours and 64 lab hours (spread out over 16 weeks, although depending on the specific class schedule signed up for, some weeks may see more hours than others).
The second course option is broken down into 64 field hours and 16 clinical hours. This provides students who finish both courses with an EMT – Basic and additional life support skills, which is helpful for individuals interested in continuing with their medical training after they receive the EMT certification in Houston, TX.
The course is a single semester, with tuition costing $1,408 per year for in-district students. Those who are in the state but out of district will have tuition of $2,416.
The EMT – Basic offered at SJCC does not require a GED/high school diploma or CPR license (the CPR license is covered in the basic life support skills course segment). However, students must reach the age of 18 prior to the end of their class. This makes it an excellent opportunity for students who are still in high school and are looking to finish off their EMT courses in Houston prior to graduating high school.
Financial aid opportunities are available through SJCC. The school’s website helps provide financial insights, in addition to in-depth cost of attendance and financial payment deadlines for students interested in splitting up payments instead of making a lump sum payment
8060 Spencer Hwy.
Pasadena, TX 77505
3. Alvin Community College
For students who are looking to pursue a paramedic school in Houston, Alvin Community College is a viable option. It provides EMT – Basic training up through paramedic training in Houston. EMT – Basic is six credit hours, while the EMT – Intermediate course is an additional 12 credit hours (a student is considered full-time when they are enrolled in at least 12 credit hours).
The Intermediate course offers patient assessment, field training, and clinical practice. After completing the 18 credit hours, students are able to take both state and national certification exams. Following the completing of this training, students are able to take the Advanced EMS Training (paramedic training in Houston). With the completion of this training, students can receive either an advanced certificate or partake in a few additional courses and receive an Associate of Applied Science degree.
Tuition for in-district students runs at $1,514 a year. For students who live in the state but are from outside of the district, tuition increases to $2,594 annually (this is one of the least expensive in state but out of district tuitions). As is the case with all other schools, this tuition does not include any additional books, supplies or uniform costs.
For students looking to enroll, they must be at least 18 years of age and have a recent CPR certificate (although no high school degree or GED is required).
Alvin Community College
3110 Mustang Road
Alvin, TX 77511
4. Lone Star College
The EMT courses in Houston are offered at LSC on the North Harris Campus. Here, students can enroll in an EMT – Basic course. As is the case with most other EMT training in Houston options, there are not EMT course online options. It is possible to partake in some lecture options online, but as the majority of EMT education is hands-on, taking complete EMT courses online is not possible.
The EMT – Basic course is six credit hours a week. During the six hours a week, course material will cover both theory and skill. At the end of the course, students will receive clinical experience training. While students receive six billable credit hours, they will receive a total of 224 contact hours (between classes and clinical training).
Lone Star College also provided an EMT Intermediate course (referred to as EMT – B NREMT), which comes with state licensing exams at the end of the course. The basic course is completed in one semester, with the intermediate option taking a second semester.
For students looking to continue their EMT training in Houston and become a paramedic, LSC is an EMT school in Houston does offer this opportunity and the program length lasts three semesters. It is one of the more competitive paramedic courses in Houston as only 25 students are allowed in at a time. It is a semester shorter than most other options, although students do not receive an associate’s degree (although it is possible to continue on with more classes to receive an associate’s degree after another semester). In order to enroll in the 25 student paramedic program, students must already have completed their EMT – Basic certification.
Tuition for one year at LSC runs $1,504 for in-district students. Those who are state residents but live outside of the district will have a tuition of $3,184 per year. In order to apply for the basic EMT program in Houston, students must have a valid CPR card by the fourth week of the program. It is recommended to have the CPR card prior to enrollment. Outside of this, there is no stipulated age or high school/GED requirement for LSC.
Financial Aid resources are provided by Lone Star College. Information through the Lone Star College website is available on different scholarship and grant opportunities.
5000 Research Forest Drive,
The Woodlands TX 77381
(832) 813 – 6500
5. RC Health Services Houston/Pearland
This EMT training is not done through a college but instead is a stand-alone training facility. It provides both EMT Basic and EMT Advanced (although paramedic training is not available). This is a program for individuals who do not want to take non-medical classes or who are not interested in pursuing an associate’s degree.
Some online EMT classes are available, but these are partial online classes. Theory is taught through online courses, but it is necessary to attend local courses for hands-on and clinical rotations. It is possible to complete all of the theory and online coursework ahead of time.
In order to enroll, interested individuals must be at least 18 years of age and have either a high school diploma or a GED. No other requirements are set up.
The same classes are provided in the suburbs of both Spring and Pearland, Texas. EMT Basic is offered at the two different locations. In order to enroll in either location (enrollment is the same process regardless of location), an interested student must complete the application online. They must then provide a scanned copy of a government issues photo ID. A state ID card, driver’s license or passport works. Proof of high school graduation or a GED is then required, and the final step is making the tuition payment before enrolling in an EMT course online.
Total tuition through the RC Heal Services is $1,299.00 (as of January 2018). This covers the textbook, workbook, the EMT – Basic classes, a polo shirt during clinical rotations, the clinical rotation fee, the performed criminal background check, the drug screening (taken within 30 days of the clinical orientation), ID badge and provided liability insurance.
Prior to taking part in the clinical portion of the course, students must provide a medical history and physical form, filled out by a clinic or physician. Students also need proof of required immunizations and any other stated forms (information on this is provided at the beginning of the course).
1801 Country Pl Pkwy #109
Pearland, TX 77584
6. Parachute Consulting
For individuals interested in an EMT – Basic course, Parachute Consulting offers a no-nonsense course opportunity. This course is desirable for students who do not wish to enroll into a community college and go after a possible associates degree. It also only provides the EMT – Basic course, so those interested in pursuing an EMT – Intermediate or paramedic certificate course should look elsewhere.
In order to enroll, students must have a high school diploma or a GED. They need to be at least 18 years of age and an FBI criminal background check is performed. Medical documentation regarding recent tuberculosis, shot records and proof of a flu shot during flu season (October through March) is all required.
Tuition for Parachute Consulting’s EMT – Basic course is $1,350 (there are payment plans available). The tuition covers the textbook, binder with provided paperwork, lab fees, blood pressure cuff, and stethoscope, plus clinical rotation fees.
Currently, classes are three times a week. Four hours, 5:30 to 9:30 pm Tuesday and Wednesday, and 8: am until 1:00 pm on Saturday, although these class times and days are subject to change (although it should provide a general idea as to how much time is required to enroll into the class).
2436 Bissonnet St, Houston,
TX 77005, USA
(713) 397 – 7007
7. Rice University
For students interested in potentially pursuing more than a paramedic or associate’s degree, Rice University does provide training opportunities. Students can enroll in an EMT – Basic class and an EMT – Advanced class. The EMT – Basic is required in order to enroll in the Advanced option. The application process for these two classes is extremely strict. Enrollment and applications for all of 2018 are currently closed. However, for those interested in possibly partaking in Rice’s 2019 classes, it is necessary to enroll (and be accepted) into the University. It is recommended to take a full year of freshman courses, including introductory medical and clinical courses prior to applying for the EMT classes in Houston. After finishing the two classes and completing the EMT exam, students are placed on the National Registry of EMTs, which makes it possible to transfer out of state and into other EMT programs easily.
Rice University is a private high school. This means even if a student comes from the state of Texas or lives in Houston, they do not receive a monetary break for their courses. According to Rice’s Financial Aid website, tuition for the 2017-2018 year costs $44,900. This is before fees, room, and board, books, personal expenses and telecommunications. The website indicates the cost for a full-time student over this time period is $63,188. Freshman enrolling in Rice University pay an additional $320 for their Orientation Week fee, with an added $325 for Room and Board if they stay on campus during this week. Tuition does generally increase on an annual basis, so the numbers for the 2017-2018 calendar year will not be current for the 2018-2019 year. Rice University does provide student aid and other financial assistance opportunities, so for those interested in attending a full, four-year university, Rice not only provides this opportunity but also is one of the best medical, teaching and research universities in the country.
6100 Main St., Houston,
(713) 348 – 5785
EMT Salary in Houston
Becoming an EMT in Houston does have its advantages. Not only does it open up desirable jobs that pay more than minimum wage without devoting years to college courses, but also an EMT certification is transferable to different states. Because of this, it is possible to become a paramedic or EMT in Houston, move, and then land a similar job in another city or state.
In terms of EMT basic salary on a national level, hourly pay is $15.71, which equates to around $32,670 a year. Throughout the United States, this position is one of the fastest growing in any industry, as the need for EMTs and paramedics should increase by 15 percent over the next decade (with an additional 37,400 jobs), according to the United States Department of Labor: Bureau of Labor Statistics (2016).
Pay for an EMT and paramedics are higher in Houston than the national average. According to Salary (2017), the average EMT salary in Houston is $34,895 (or a little more than $2,000 more than the national average). It is important to note this is the median for EMT Basic, Intermediate and paramedic salary. The salary for entry-level pay is $28,391, while the top-earning paramedics bring in around $42,905. There is a rather wide range between the EMT basic salary in Houston and paramedic salary in Houston. However, as it is possible to move from an EMT – Basic to a paramedic in a single year, it’s possible to make a sizeable jump in salary in a short period of time.
Beyond base salary, total compensation moves up from an average of $24,895 up to $52,234. This includes over $2,670 in Social Security payments, $1,257 in 401K payments, plus payments for time off, pension and healthcare (Salary, 2017).
There are many educational opportunities for individuals looking to become an EMT or paramedic. It ultimately depends on what the right fit for a student is. Whether they are looking for a two-year paramedic program, they want to take only EMT training in Houston from a local training company or they are interested in receiving the complete college experience, there is an opportunity available. Becoming a certified EMT, regardless of level, allows for easier job placement, both in Houston and around the state. This makes receiving an EMT certification in Houston a valuable opportunity for individuals either looking to pursue further medical training or who are interested in landing a quality job without years of college.