What Is an Emergency Medical Dispatch Certificate?

If you tend to be calm in a crisis and would like to provide medical advice to individuals who are experiencing emergencies, you might enjoy a career as an emergency medical dispatcher. Continue reading to learn more about earning an emergency medical dispatch certificate and what you can do with it. Schools offering Fire & Emergency Services degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Emergency Medical Dispatcher Careers Explained

Emergency medical dispatchers field calls from people in crisis. They identify the nature of the emergency and send the fire, ambulance or police units that can best assist. Additionally, dispatchers monitor emergency personnel response and keep records pertaining to the situations they handle. An emergency medical dispatch certification is proof that you have completed a recognized course of training in this field. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), many states actually require emergency medical dispatchers to be certified.

Common Courses Policing systems, stress management, equipment usage, protocols and procedures
Online Availability Blended
Prerequisites CPR certification, possible requirement of health and immunization documentation
Possible Careers Paramedic, first responder, dispatcher

Certification Requirements

While there is no one universal certification, the National Academies of Emergency Dispatch offers the Emergency Medical Dispatcher (EMD) certification, the National Emergency Number Association offers the Center Manager Certification Program (CMCP) and the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials (APCO) offers an Emergency Medical Dispatcher certification. To earn any of these credentials, individuals usually must attend lectures, complete laboratory training and pass an examination.

Education Program Options

Schools also offer classes in emergency medical dispatch. These classes usually consist of 2-3 days of training which focus on the capturing of call details, disaster response, liability, crisis intervention and stress management. Sometimes, these programs are offered in conjunction with the National Academies of Emergency Dispatch. For admission, you typically need to have a high school diploma or GED and pass a background check.

Salary and Job Outlook

The BLS reported that, in May 2014, about 102,000 police, fire and ambulance dispatchers worked in the United States. The agency also stated that, at that time, these workers earned medium annual salaries of approximately $37,410 The BLS predicted a three percent decline in job growth for dispatchers from 2014-2024.

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