The nationwide demand for EMTs is projected to increase by 15% through the upcoming 10 years per the latest figures provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. With the demand at such elevated levels in the near future, the opportunity has never been better to enroll in EMT school and start working towards a career as an EMT.

EMTs and Paramedics are first responders who are summoned into urgent medical settings to attend to the sick and/or seriously injured. These professionals are required to think and act swiftly under extreme stress, making them truly unexpendable members of the medical field. Thanks to these features, it really is no wonder that these specialists are considered invaluable members of their communities.

What does a Montana Emergency Medical Technician do?

Caring for the sick and injured is a broad description of the EMT and Paramedic’s job responsibilities. The following link shows a more in depth description of the role of an EMT.

What are the steps to become an EMT in Montana?

EMTs and Paramedics in Montana will need to graduate from a postsecondary educational course. The State of Montana further asks all of its EMTs and Paramedics to be licensed. The next five steps will be required in order to become an EMT in each state.

Step 1: Earn your high school diploma or G.E.D.

Earning your high school diploma is a basic fundamental to finding work in any skilled job. This is also true with regards to working in healthcare. While it is possible to get certain entry-level jobs without at least a G.E.D., you’ll at some point find that opportunities for advancement are minimal.

When shopping for an Emergency Medical Technician certification class, you can expect to find that all schools require trainees to hold a G.E.D. or diploma prior to registration. For that reason, regardless of your professional goal, make sure that you finish this step.

Step 2: Finish an EMT training course

Ahead of challenging for certification as an EMT, you will be expected to finish an accredited training program. Candidates must have finished the course in the previous 24 months and provide verification of successful course completion on the National Registry website (details below).

EMT training is most commonly offered by junior colleges, trade schools, hospitals, and universities. Certain courses are offered at fireman and police training academies.

Click here to see a current list of accredited programs near you.

Taking EMT training online

Even though many basic online EMT programs are available, you should be informed that you will have to receive a large portion of your education in-person at an actual physical location. Inquire with your prospective program about any distance learning availability.

How long does EMT training in MT take?

It’s common for EMT training to require anywhere from 2 to 6 months, depending upon the programs location and hours of courses that are scheduled each week.

Below are the most-typical training hours criteria for Emergency Medical Technician candidates.

  • Emergency Medical Responder – 40 hours
  • EMT – 110 hours
  • Advanced EMT – 200 to 400 hours
  • Paramedic – 1,000+ hours

Step 3: Become CPR-BLS certified

Candidates must have a CPR-BLS certification for “Healthcare Providers” for EMT candidacy. So as to be recognized, a certification course has to be authorized by the American Heart Association. Training is provided through a variety of institutions, such as the American Red Cross.

Step 4: Pass the National Registry EMT Exam

The EMTs certification exam is made of a basic knowledge segment (the Cognitive Exam) and a skill demonstration part (the Psychomotor Exam). While the Psychomotor Exam asks students to exhibit their abilities in-person, the multiple-choice Cognitive Exam is given in an online format. Directly below you’ll find a closer review of both sections of the exam.

Cognitive Exam

The National Registry Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) Cognitive Exam is a computer adaptive test (CAT). The exam includes between 70 and 120 multiple-choice questions that must be answered within the allocated two hours. Listed below you’ll find a detailed summary of the content covered on the assessment.

Airway, Respiration & Ventilation (18-22% of exam – 85% Adult/15% Pediatric)
Cardiology & Resuscitation (20-24% of exam – 85% Adult/15% Pediatric)
Trauma (14-18% of exam – 85% Adult/15% Pediatric)
Medical (27-31% of exam – 85% Adult/15% Pediatric)
EMS Operations (10-14% of exam – NA Adult/N/A Pediatric)

Psychomotor Exam

In order to display the skills you were taught during your training class, you will need to complete the Psychomotor Exam at a testing center. You will be tested in all areas for the position. Each area of skills covered on the exam is detailed below.

  • Patient Assessment and Management – Trauma
  • Patient Assessment and Management – Medical
  • BVM Ventilation of an Apneic Adult Patient
  • Oxygen Administration by Non-Rebreather Mask
  • Spinal Immobilization (Seated Patient)
  • Spinal Immobilization (Supine Patient)
  • Bleeding Control and Shock Management
  • Cardiac Arrest Management / AED
  • Joint Immobilization
  • Long Bone Immobilization

Step 5: Become added on the National EMT Registry

The final step in becoming an Emergency Medical Technician is getting your name placed on the National Emergency Medical Technician Registry within 30 days of graduating from your training. A fee of $80 must be paid in order to have your name added to the registry. Having your name included on this list is the final step needed to become eligible for hire as an EMT.

How much do Emergency Medical Technicians make in Montana?

Nationwide, EMTs earned a median salary of $33,380 in 2017 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The data table below illustrates the salary and hourly wage information for Emergency Medical Technicians in Montana.

LocationPay TypeLowMedianHigh
United StatesHourly$10.52$16.05$27.40
Central Montana BOSHourly$12.75$16.20$22.10
Missoula, MT MSAHourly$11.19$14.60$21.71
Western Montana BOSHourly$9.65$14.30$24.30
Eastern Montana BOSHourly$10.51$13.06$18.68
Southwestern Montana BOSHourly$9.57$12.87$30.00

The job outlook for EMTs in Montana

As is the situation across the nation, the healthcare field in Montana is experiencing historic growth due to the region’s aging populace and growing number of insured patients. The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects a 24% rise in EMT and Paramedic jobs also over the upcoming decade.