How to Become an EMT in Iowa
The Iowa Bureau of EMS sets the guidelines for EMT certification in the state and you’ll need to understand their requirements if you want to know how to become an EMT in Iowa.
Iowa, like many other states, is currently transitioning to the new National Scope of Practice Model certification levels recommended by the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT) and as such now licenses 3 levels of EMT in the state: EMT, Advanced EMT (AEMT), Paramedic.
Requirements to Become an EMT in Iowa
The first thing you need to know is that you can begin an EMT training program in Iowa at the age of 17 but you must turn 18 before you take your certification exams.
Also, you need to have current CPR certification before you enroll in an EMT training program.
- 17 years of age or older. (You must turn 18 years old prior to taking the certification exams)
- Iowa Driver License
- High school diploma or equivalent
- Current CPR certification. Either Health Care Provider (American Heart Association) or Professional Rescuer (American Red Cross) is acceptable
- Criminal background checks and adult/dependent abuse checks
- BLS course completion card (all levels)
- Course completion cards as required by the Medical Director (i.e; ACLS,PALS, PEPP, PHTLS, etc.)
- Emergency driving and communications training
- Hepatitis B vaccination and tuberculosis status
- Dependent Adult and Child Abuse training
- NIMS (IS-700) and Incident Command (100-200-195-300 or equivalent) – These are emergency preparedness training certifications. NIMS stands for National Incident Management System
- Pass the state written and practical EMT certification exams.
EMT Training in Iowa
EMT training in Iowa takes place at a limited number of Authorized EMS Training Programs throughout the state.
EMT-Basic training programs require at least 130 hours of training and generally take 16 weeks to complete.
Click here for a full list of EMT Training programs in Iowa.
Reciprocity for EMTs Licensed in Another State
You must be a current member of the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT) to apply for reciprocity in Iowa. Upon verification of your status you may be granted an appropriate Iowa certification. In some cases additional training to meet Iowa certification requirements may be necessary.
If you’re applying at the EMT-Basic level and are currently a member of the U.S. Army, hold the military occupational skill of Combat Medic (91W) or Special Forces Medic (18D); please provide documentation of your military training when submitting the reciprocity application.
If any additional training and/or testing is required for certification, an EMS Endorsement Preliminary Approval form will be sent to you. This form may allow you to function as an Iowa EMS provider for employment purposes or for entrance into an Iowa EMS Training Program. An endorsement application fee of $50.00 payable to the Iowa Department of Public Health must be included with the completed application form. If you have any questions or concerns regarding endorsement, you can call 515-281-0620.
EMT Jobs in Iowa
Job prospects for EMTs throughout the US is looking very good for the foreseeable future.
The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects an additional 75,000 EMT jobs by 2020. That’s a 33% increase in the number of EMT positions as of 2010. Average job growth for all occupations in the U.S.A. is projected to be 14% for the same time period. In other words EMT job openings are expected to increase at more than double the national average in the next ten years.
Check the job board to find EMT jobs in your area.
Iowa Department of Public Health
Bureau of Emergency Medical Services (EMS)
Lucas State Office Bldg.
321 E. 12th Street
Des Moines, IA 50319