A Paramedic (EMT-P) works directly with the public providing personal assistance, medical attention, and emotional support. They respond to medical emergencies providing on-scene treatment, crisis intervention, life-saving stabilization, and transport of ill or injured patients to a treatment center.
Internet research, a personal interview with a paramedic, and the Occupational Outlook Handbook are the sources used to gather the information in this profile.
According to the Occupational Outlook Handbook (OOH), paramedics are required to work more than 40 hours a week. They often have irregular work hours since emergency services function 24 hours a day. Indoors and out, work in all types of weather is part of the challenges faced on the job. Physical challenges exist due to the strenuous amounts of kneeling, standing, walking, bending, and heavy lifting. The job duties create exposure to violent situations, as well as communicable diseases increasing risk of contracting diseases.
A Paramedic must perform a variety of job tasks including being a confident leader who can accept the challenge and high degree of responsibility entailed in the position. O*Net provides tasks related to a paramedics job; some of them are listed below.
Administer first-aid treatment and life-support care to sick or injured persons
Observe, record, and report to physician patient's condition, treatment provided, and reactions to drugs and treatment
Immobilize patient and transport
Maintain vehicles, medical and communication equipment, and replenish supplies
Communicate with dispatchers and receiving treatment center personnel
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A paramedic’s work is physically challenging as well as emotionally stressful, sometimes involving suffering patients and life threatening situations. Elizabeth Mesick, EMT-P, Guilford County Emergency Services, states, “…although the work is very stressful, it’s exciting and I enjoy the opportunity to help people. This position is very rewarding and I would recommend it to others who have a passion for helping people and a strong stomach.”
“Career One Stop Pathways to Career Success.” NC Employment Security Commission. 2 Sep. 2009. Web. 18 Feb. 2010.
“Emergency Medical Technicians and Paramedics.” Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-11 Edition. 17 Dec. 2009. Web. 18 Feb. 2010.
“Summary Report for: 29-2041.00 - Emergency Medical Technicians and Paramedic.” O*Net. 2008. Web. 18 Feb. 2010.
Mesick, Elizabeth. Personal interview. 22 Feb. 2010.
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