Training & Education

Frequently Asked Questions – Training & Education

EMS


Fire


EMS

I am interested in becoming an EMS provider (EMR, EMT, AEMT, or Paramedic). How do I find a training program and what do I need to do to become certified?

To become a certified Emergency Medical Responder (EMR), Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), Advanced EMT (AEMT), or Paramedic, you must complete a course of instruction through an institution accredited by the State Board of Emergency Medical, Fire, and Transportation Services and pass the National Registry of EMTs examination. (Note: You are required to become certified at the EMT level before you can be admitted into an AEMT or Paramedic program).

A listing of accredited institutions and contact information can be found HERE. The program director can provide you with information regarding when and where courses are offered and the admission and course completion criteria for the program. Following course completion and passing of the state examination, you will need to apply for an Ohio certificate to practice. Application must be made within two years of course completion.

I am still in high school. Do I need to wait until I graduate to become an EMT?

Individuals who are 17 years of age and in their final year of high school may be admitted into an EMT course as long as all other admission criteria is met. You must be 18 years of age to become certified as an EMT.

I completed an EMS provider (EMR/EMT/Advanced EMT/Paramedic) course and passed the National Registry examination. Can I begin working as an EMS provider in Ohio?

You cannot function as an EMS provider in Ohio unless you have been issued a certificate to practice by the State Board of Emergency Medical, Fire, and Transportation Services. A certificate issued by the National Registry of EMTs does not authorize you to function in Ohio. Your training program will provide you with information on completing an application for Ohio certification once you have completed a state-approved course and passed the National Registry examination. An application for certification must be received within two years of course completion.

I completed my EMS course but have not yet passed the National Registry examination. Can I continue riding with an EMS agency and practicing my skills while I wait to test/retest?

No. You can only perform skills outside your scope of practice while you are functioning as a student during an assigned field/clinical rotation and within the guidelines of the training program. Once you have completed the course, you are no longer considered a student and are not permitted to perform any skill outside of the scope of practice for your current Ohio certification level.

I am an EMT taking an Advanced EMT course. If I have been checked off in class and approved to complete a skill during my assigned field/clinical time, is it okay for me to practice those skills when I am working at my own department as long as my partner is an Advanced EMT or Paramedic?

No. You can only perform skills outside your scope of practice when you are functioning in a student capacity and within the confines of the training program. You cannot function in a student capacity when you are part of the assigned patient-care crew. (Note: Even if you are not considered part of the patient-care crew, you can only function as a student if the training program has an affiliation agreement with your department and the training program permits you to schedule student ride time with the department as part of your course requirements.)

How do I become an EMS instructor?

There are three levels of EMS certificates to teach: continuing education instructor, assistant EMS instructor, and EMS instructor, with different requirements for each level. To qualify for an EMS instructor certification, an individual must have a current and valid Ohio EMS certificate to practice (or be licensed as a registered nurse or physician assistant), been certified for at least five of the past seven years, pass a knowledge and practical skill exam at their level of certification (a RN or PA must pass the paramedic examination), complete an instructor course through an accredited training program, pass an instructional methods examination and submit an application to the Division of EMS.

My department would like to provide in-house training to our EMS providers. What do we need to do to become a training facility?

It will depend on the type of training you wish to provide: training for initial certification, or continuing education for individuals who are already certified.

To qualify to provide training for initial certification at the EMR, EMT, Advanced EMT, or Paramedic levels, a facility must hold a certificate of accreditation issued by the State Board of Emergency Medical, Fire, and Transportation Services. An entity may apply to provide one or more levels of training under the certificate of accreditation. Once accredited, the program may also provide continuing education courses.

To provide continuing education courses only, an entity must hold a certificate of approval issued by the Board.

Those interested in becoming an accredited or approved site should first review the criteria found in OAC 4765-7, and then contact the EMS Education staff for additional information regarding filing an application and the required on-site review.


Fire

I am interested in becoming a firefighter. How do I find a training program and what do I need to do to become certified?

To become a certified firefighter, you must complete a course of instruction through an institution chartered through the Division of EMS and pass the state certification examination. A listing of chartered institutions and contact information can be found HERE. The program director can provide you with information regarding when and where courses are offered and the admission and course completion criteria for the program. You must complete the course and pass the practical and written examinations within one year of course start date.

I am still in high school. Do I need to wait until I graduate to become a firefighter?

Firefighter training programs may only admit individuals who are at least 18 years of age, except that a chartered fire training program may admit a student who is 17 years old provided that the student has graduated or is enrolled in the twelfth or final grade in a high school fire training program. You must be 18 years of age to become certified as a firefighter.

I completed a firefighter course and passed the state examination. Can I begin working as a firefighter in Ohio?

You cannot function as a firefighter in Ohio unless you have been issued a certificate to practice through the Division of EMS. You may check the status of your certification HERE.

Once your certificate is listed as “Active” you are considered certified and can begin functioning as at firefighter; this generally occurs within 24 hours from submission of the application. If your certificate is listed as “Needs Approval,” further review of your applicationby the Division of EMS staff is needed before your application can be processed. All requirements for a firefighter certificate must be completed, including submission of an application, within one year of the course start date.

My fire department would like to provide in-house initial fire courses. What do we need to do to become a training facility?

To qualify to provide training for initial certification at the volunteer firefighter, firefighter I, firefighter II, fire safety inspector, or fire instructor levels, a facility must hold a charter issued by the Executive Director of the Division of EMS. Those interested in becoming a chartered program should first review the criteria found in OAC 4765-11, and then contact the Fire Education staff for additional information regarding filing an application and the required on-site review.

How do I become a fire instructor?

There are three levels of fire certificates to teach: fire instructor, assistant fire instructor and fire safety inspector instructor, with different requirements for each level. To qualify for a fire instructor certification, an individual must have a current and valid Ohio firefighter certificate and been certified for at least five of the past seven years, pass a knowledge and practical skill exam at the firefighter II level, complete an instructor course through a chartered training program, pass an instructional methods examination, and submit an application to the Division of EMS.

I am certified as a volunteer firefighter and am enrolled in a Firefighter I transition course. Can I count the Firefighter I transition course hours toward my volunteer firefighter continuing education hours?

Yes. In accordance with 4765-20-13 of the Ohio Administrative Code, an applicant for renewal of a firefighter certification may count Firefighter I or Firefighter II transition course hours toward their firefighter (Volunteer Firefighter or Firefighter I) continuing education requirements.

Have Questions?

Email EMS Education or Fire Education

Or call (614) 466-9447 or (800) 233-0785

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