Paramedic is sometime called as emergency medical technicians (EMT). Paramedic responds to emergency calls that require medical assistance. Paramedic earns more than basic EMTs because they have received more education and have more skills. There are three general designations for this job, including EMT-Basic, EMT-Intermediate, and Paramedic. Both EMT-basic and intermediate are responsible for on-scene care and transfer of patients to a hospital or other medical facilities. On the other hand, paramedic is expected to provide pre-hospital care, such as administering medications, reading EKGs, and using complex equipment. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has projected a growth rate of about 33% for EMTs and paramedics between 2010 and 2020 due to the aging population of the country. Paramedic in the US earns around $34,000 per year, with the highest earners being making around $53,000 and the lowest earners $19,880. Keep reading for more information about paramedic salary and career.
Paramedic job description
The responsibilities of paramedics and EMTs mainly revolve around taking care of the injured or the sick in any emergency medical settings. The lives of the people that need rescuing often rest in the hands of these responders. Their duties include responding to 911 calls for CPR, bandaging a wound, and other medical emergencies and assessing the patient’s condition and identifying the quickest treatment necessary. Paramedic is also expected to conduct their responsibilities based on how they were trained and what the supervising physicians have instructed. Paramedic needs to know how to use restraints or backboards to secure patients and prepare them for transport via the ambulance. Paramedic also assists in transferring patients to the emergency department and forwarding their observations and treatment to the healthcare staff. Paramedics also have to make a patient care report and record the medical care that they provided to the patients. When not responding to 911 calls, paramedic has to restock on supplies and maintain the equipment. Some paramedics are assigned as the ambulance driver while others monitor the vital signs and the needs of the patient during transport. There are also paramedics who work with the hospital flight crew.
How much does a Paramedic make a year ?
Average paramedic salary
The average salary of paramedic in the United States is $34,030 a year, based on BLS figures. Their average hourly wage is $16.36, while 50% of the group made around $11.74 to $19.44 per hour, or $24,420 to $40,440 per annum.
Paramedic salary in USA
The average salary of paramedic in the US ranges from $26,105 to $57,042 per annum, based on PayScale reports, or $11.54 to $21.94 per hour. Their median income is $39,389 per year. Overtime pay is $15.87 to $33.40 per hour. Bonuses may total up to $1,026.
Starting paramedic earns around $18,183 to $51,521 per year, while one with a year to four years of experience can climb up to $24,445 to $50,813. Paramedic who has spent 10 to 19 years in the business are paid $34,279 to $73,155, while the 20-year veterans or older take home $38,361 to $76,471 per year.
The top paying industries are other heavy and civil engineering construction that pays $54,180 per annum; waste treatment and disposal that pays $50,180; state government that pays 448,120; and other amusement and recreation industries that pay $46,980.
Paramedic salary by state
According to BLS reports, the top paying states are the District of Columbia, at $52,930 a year, followed by Alaska with $51,570, Washington with $50,980, Illinois with $48,350, and Maryland with $42,410. The states with the most number of paramedics in the country include Kentucky, which topped the May 2012 BLS survey, at 4,730 jobs, followed by South Carolina, Delaware, Tennessee, and Maine.
Paramedic salary in Canada
The annual salary for paramedic in Canada averages C$34,400 to C$84,586, while the median salary is C$60,011 per year. The hourly wage averages C$15.30 to C$39.01 with overtime pay of C$1.54 to C$60.76 per hour. Benefits may include bonuses, paid holidays, paid sick leave, and reimbursement for education/training/tuition/certification.
Paramedic who has accumulated one to four years of experience are paid C$36,241 to C$82,484 per annum, while workers with five to nine years in the field can earn C$45,000 to C$80,000.
The certification received by paramedics also determines their salary. A CPR certification can fetch around C$36,065 to C$84,586 per year for paramedics; Board Certified Primary Care certification C$34,817 to C$60,000; Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) certification C$35,479 to C$85,317; and Pediatric Advanced Life Support certification (PALS) C$ 44,219 to C$81,389.
The industry setting also matters, with paramedic working in ambulance services paid more at C$48,500 to C$77,419 per annum compared to the C$40,695 to C$61,339 in health care.
Paramedic salary in Australia
The mean annual salary for paramedics in Australia is AU$41,376 to AU$96,138. PayScale also reported a median salary of AU$60,232 per year. The basic salary ranges from AU$40,081 to AU$04,832, but a bonus of up to AU$9,030 may be provided by some employers.
Based on experience, paramedic with one to four years of experience earns AU$37,313 to AU$81,325; those with five to nine years earn AU$54,019 to AU$84,000; and those with 10 to 19 years of experience earn AU$54,926 to AU$110,864 per annum. Long time paramedics with 20 years of experience or more can take home AU$72,500 to AU$99,729 a year.
Differing industry setting also affects the salary of paramedic. Health care offers higher compensation than others at AU$38,783 to AU$95,696; ambulance services offer AU$40.746 to AU$89,639; and hospitals offer AU$39,548 to AU$70,000 per annum.
Paramedic salary in UK
In the UK, paramedic earns an average annual salary of around £19,517 to £33,190. Their median salary is approximately £26,732 per year. The basic salary ranges from £18,486 to £32,000 per year with bonuses of up to £7,272.
Certified paramedic earns more than regular ones. Common certifications are PALS, ACLS, and CPR, which all pay in about the same range of £18,500 to £33,500 per annum.
Paramedic salary in South Africa
Paramedic in South Africa earns an average salary of R40,535 to R257,344 per year. Their reported median salary is R176,001 per annum.
Based on the type of employer, paramedic who works for the government can make around R15,115 to R293,614; those in private practice make R42,282 to R238,390; those in companies make R116,798 to R245,854; and those in hospitals make R47,596 to R244,280 per annum.
Gender-wise, female paramedics are paid R108,000 to R210,000, while male responders are paid R23,489 to R258,715 per year.
Learn more about different salaries of allied health professionals.
How to become a Paramedic
To become a paramedic, one needs a high school diploma or GED and CPR certification. While in high school, courses in physiology and anatomy are a must. Formal training for paramedic aspirants are usually offered by community colleges, technical institutes, and emergency care training facilities.
Different training programs are provided depending on the students’ goal, which could be EMT-Basic, EMT-intermediate, and paramedic. Among the three, paramedics have the most advanced type of training. Paramedic has to finish both EMT-level training, Advanced EMT training, and advanced medical skills training. After completing this training, an associate’s degree may be awarded. However, programs may last up to two years, or 1,300 hours of training. There is also a separate training for ambulance drivers.
Certification exams are offered by the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT). But before taking the exams, candidates are required to complete a certified education or training program.
Conclusion about paramedic salary
According to BLS reports, paramedic earns around $34,370 per annum, or $16.53 per hour. However, salary may vary based on the industry type, with the highest paying industry being the other heavy and civil engineering construction; the location of employment, with the top paying state being the District of Columbia; the metropolitan area, with the highest paying city being Coeur d’Alene, Idaho; and experience, with the 20-year veterans earning the highest.