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Advanced EMT vs. Paramedic: What Are the Differences?

Learn about the two careers and review some of the similarities and differences between them.

Emergency medical technicians (EMTs) and paramedics are both first responders who provide medical care to patients in need. EMTs have less training than paramedics and are therefore able to provide a limited range of medical services. Paramedics, on the other hand, have more training and can provide a wider range of medical care. In this article, we compare the job duties, training and salary of EMTs and paramedics.

What is an Advanced EMT?

Advanced Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) provide high-level care to patients who are experiencing life-threatening medical emergencies. They are able to administer IV fluids, give injections, perform intubations and use a defibrillator. Advanced EMTs work closely with paramedics to provide care and transport patients to the hospital. They are often the first responders on the scene of an accident or medical emergency and are responsible for stabilizing the patient and keeping them comfortable until they can be transported to a medical facility.

What is a Paramedic?

Paramedics are emergency medical technicians (EMTs) who have additional training and certification in advanced life support. They provide care to patients who are experiencing a medical emergency. This care can include administering medication, performing minor medical procedures, and providing CPR. Paramedics work in a variety of settings, including ambulances, helicopters, and hospitals. They may also work in industrial settings, such as oil rigs and mines, or in disaster relief situations. Paramedics must be able to think quickly and make decisions under pressure. They must also be able to handle physical demands, such as lifting patients and carrying equipment.

Advanced EMT vs. Paramedic

Here are the main differences between an advanced EMT and a paramedic.

Job Duties

Both EMTs and paramedics have similar job duties, such as taking vitals, providing first aid and transporting patients. The major difference is that an advanced emt has fewer patient contact requirements than a paramedic. This means that an advanced emt may be able to transport a patient quickly without interacting with them much. For example, they may be able to load a patient onto an ambulance and drive them to the hospital without saying much to or asking many questions of the patient.

Paramedics are required to have more patient contact because they have to perform certain medical procedures, such as intubation or administering intravenous fluids. They also have to ask more questions of patients to better understand their conditions and provide care.

Job Requirements

An advanced EMT (AEMT) is a level of emergency medical technician (EMT) that requires more training than a basic EMT. AEMTs can provide more comprehensive care to patients, including administering intravenous fluids and some medications. To become an AEMT, candidates must complete a state-approved education program and earn certification from the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT).

Paramedics are the highest level of EMTs and can provide the most comprehensive care, including performing CPR, administering intravenous fluids and medications, and using a defibrillator. Paramedics typically have at least an associate’s degree in paramedicine or a related field, although some paramedics may have a bachelor’s degree. In addition to completing an accredited education program, paramedics must also earn certification from the NREMT.

Work Environment

The work environment for an advanced EMT and a paramedic can vary depending on the location of their job. For example, if they work in a rural area, they may spend more time outdoors than someone who works in a city. They also may travel to different locations during their shift. Advanced EMTs often work in hospitals or other medical facilities, while paramedics typically work in emergency vehicles like ambulances.


The main difference between an advanced EMT and a paramedic is the level of training and education. An advanced EMT has completed more training than a basic EMT, but not as much as a paramedic. Paramedics have the most training and are able to provide the most comprehensive care.

Both advanced EMTs and paramedics need to be able to assess a patient’s condition and provide appropriate care. They also both need to be able to communicate effectively with patients and their families. However, paramedics have a greater scope of practice and are able to provide more advanced life support, such as administering medication and performing intubations.


The average salary for an advanced EMT is $46,251 per year, while the average salary for a paramedic is $53,218 per year. The salary for both positions may vary depending on the state in which you work, the level of education you have and the type of employer you work for.


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