Paramedic, emergency medical technician jobs in demand - KALB-TV News Channel 5 & CBS 2

Paramedic, emergency medical technician jobs in demand

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© acadianambulance.com © acadianambulance.com

LAFAYETTE, La. (KALB News Channel 5) Acadian voices concerns about shortage of paramedics and emergency medical technicians.

Many emergency medical agencies throughout the United States are facing critical shortages of qualified paramedics and emergency medical technicians.  Acadian Ambulance, the largest privately owned ambulance company in the nation, has been able to avoid the shortfall.

"Even though we have been fortunate to remain fully staffed during this shortage, we are hiring both paramedics and EMTs on an ongoing basis, primarily because of the tremendous growth of Acadian," said Randall Mann, Acadian's vice president of marketing and public relations.

Mann said the largest cause of the shortage is the lack of EMS academies. Acadian Ambulance dealt with a similar shortage in 2003 and established the National EMS Academy (NEMSA) that year to keep up with the rising demand for medics. That forward thinking has allowed Acadian to remain adequately staffed while many other ambulance services are not.

Director of NEMSA Kirk LaCour said, "Before the creation of NEMSA, Acadian had to rely on local training programs to produce new medics. However, Acadian was growing too fast and the programs were not meeting our needs. By training our own medics, we are able to not only ensure the quality of their education but also make sure Acadian's ambulances remain staffed and ready to serve."

Another factor contributing to the shortage is a decreasing number of paramedics graduating from most programs. At NEMSA the pass rate for paramedics in 2012 was 89 percent, 8 percent above the national average.

NEMSA has seven locations throughout Louisiana and two in Texas, and produces medics that serve in Acadian Ambulance's operations in Louisiana, Texas and Mississippi. NEMSA also trains medics for other ambulance services and offers continuing education courses to the general public and health-care professionals.

Mann said, "Acadian actively recruits both existing paramedics and EMTs and also those interested in joining the emergency medicine profession. It's a great career choice because a student can earn their EMT certification within just a few months and the job opportunities, both locally and nationally, are tremendous." 

NEMSA's paramedic classes begin in January and August, while EMT-Basic courses start in January, May and August.  Interested parties can call (866) 459-3500 or visit www.nationalemsacademy.com. To learn more about current job opportunities with Acadian Ambulance, please go to https://ambulance.acadian.jobs.

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