Emergency Medical Technicians



Emergency medical technicians (EMTs) respond to medical emergencies to provide immediate treatment for ill or injured persons both on the scene and during transport to a medical facility. They function as part of an emergency medical team, and the range of medical services they perform varies according to their level of training and certification. There are approximately 262,100 emergency medical technicians employed in the United States. They are also known as paramedics. 

Quick Facts


Median Salary



Employment Prospects



Minimum Education Level

Some Postsecondary Training



Part-time, summer, or volunteer work in a hospital or clinic





Personality Traits

Hands On


Earnings of EMTs depend on the type of employer and individual level of training and experience. Those working in the public sector, for police and fire departments, usually receive a higher wage than those in the private sector, working for ambulance companies and hospitals. Salary levels typically rise with increasing levels of skill, training, and certification.

Median annual earnings...

Work Environment

EMTs must work under all kinds of conditions, both indoors and outdoors, and sometimes in very trying circumstances. They must do their work regardless of extreme weather conditions and are often required to do fairly strenuous physical tasks such as lifting, climbing, and kneeling. They consistently deal with situations that many people would find upsetting and traumatic, such as deaths, accid...


Employment for EMTs is expected to grow faster than the average for all careers through 2028, according to the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL). The proportion of older people, who most use emergency medical services, is growing in many communities, placing more demands on the emergency medical services delivery system and increasing the need for EMTs. There is also high turnover in this occupati...