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How to Become an EMT in Texas

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An emergency medical technician (EMT) is a first responder who provides life-saving medical care at the site of accidents and disasters and while en route to a properly staffed hospital. As a Texas EMT, you can expect to see your fair share of trauma, death, childbirth and natural disasters. You will clear airways to permit breathing, jump-start stopped hearts, stem bleeding arteries, immobilize fractures and provide the last human contact to the dying. Each state has its own rules and regulations governing the training and employment of their EMTs. Follow these steps and learn how to become an EMT in Texas and join the ranks of those in one of the toughest and most rewarding careers in the medical field.

Prepare yourself for a career as a basic EMT by taking classes in high school pertaining to biology, psychology and communication.

Enroll in--and pass--an emergency medical services training program that is approved by the Texas Department of State Health Services.

Download the application for EMS Personnel Certification from the website of the Texas Department of State Health Services.

Fill out the application completely and mail it with the $64 fee to the Texas Department of State Health Services, Attn: Mail Code 2003, 1100 W. 49th St., Austin, TX 78756-3199.

Set up an account and apply for testing through the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT). This requires a fee of $70. Wait until your information has been verified by the NREMT and you are issued an “authorization to test” (ATT) letter.

Call the Pearson VUE computer testing facilities at 1 (866) 673-6896 to set up a time and date for your testing. This is a crucial stepping stone toward being employed by the state of Texas as an EMT, and it is critical not to miss this testing date!

Pass a criminal background check and verification of your emergency medical training course enrollment, graduation and grade as well as certification through the NREMT.


Unless you know for certain that you can handle the various situations the job will expose you to physically and emotionally, it is wise to request to go on a ride-along with a paramedic unit and simply watch on site what the EMTs do during a typical shift. Remember that actually working as a Texas EMT is a lot different from the depictions on television. There will not always be happy endings, and the blood, pain and destruction you witness are real. This is a wonderful job for those who want to make a difference in the lives of others.


Stay up-to-date on all of your vaccinations, and never cut corners in the handling of patients. Protocols must be followed to the letter, and failure to do so may leave you liable in case of a patient’s adverse reaction to your treatment.

About the Author

Based in the Los Angeles area, Sylvia Cochran is a seasoned freelance writer focusing on home and garden, travel and parenting articles. Her work has appeared in "Families Online Magazine" and assorted print and Internet publications.

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