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What's It Like to Be an EMT? Handling Stressful Situations

Emergency Medical Technician

Working as an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), is an important and rewarding profession. The nature of the job requires one to develop the ability to think quickly and make sound decisions. It also requires you to be able to work as a team with other professionals, sometimes in challenging circumstances. From navigating chaotic scenes to providing proper care under pressure, the work of an EMT is important and necessary.

One of the aspects of being an EMT is the ability to deal calmly with stressful situations. Whether it's working a car accident, responding to a cardiac arrest, or performing Inter-facility transfers, EMTs must develop the ability to work calmly and remain focused in various types of emergencies. These are "learned skills" and the best way to learn them is through experience. Good EMTs also learn to assess situations quickly, prioritize tasks, and communicate effectively with both patients and fellow responders.

While most calls are routine and not terribly demanding due to the training and experience EMTs receive, it can be unpredictable at times so EMTs must be prepared for anything. They may be called to assist individuals of all ages and backgrounds, and face a wide range of medical or trauma related issues. From administering CPR to controlling bleeding and treating patients with various types of injuries, EMTs must become proficient in dealing with a variety of situations.

Working as an EMT is also very rewarding. The opportunity to make a difference in someone's life is a privilege that few professions offer. EMTs also often form strong bonds with their colleagues, united by a commitment to serving their communities and providing the highest standard of care.

For many, working as an EMT also serves as a launching pad for other health related careers like becoming a firefighter, paramedic, registered nurse, physicians assistant, law-enforcement officer, and many even go on to med school to eventually become physicians. As I write this, there is currently a tremendous need for more emergency medical technicians so if you have been thinking about getting into this career now is a great time to get started.


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