Are Navy Corpsman able to transfer/translate their military medical training and certifications to the civilian sector or do they have to start from scratch?

(Interjection – The answer below is typical. My oldest son enlisted in the Army for six years to be a firefighter. He became and was discharged as a jump-qualified paramedic. In civilian life he could only find a job as an ambulance driver, not a medic. He’s now on the Dallas, TX, police force. I tried to tell him that this is typical of military training in any technical field, that you are only trained to the level the military needs, not beyond that. ~ Don Chapin)

Answered by: Jonathan B, Former US Navy at US Navy Hospital Corpsman (1996–1997) Updated March 23
Ok I’m the person who should answer this, I was an Army Medic and Navy Corpsman as well as a Paramedic. Yes, the military is trying to increase the training standards for these two. They have them training together as it currently stands in Fort Sam.

Getting your EMT Basic is encouraged after graduating from the basic course at Sam. When I went in only the top 10% of the class were allowed. When you got to your duty stations if you were going to be state side for a year without deployment it was encouraged that you get your Paramedic Certificate. Most states have made Paramedic a Associates Degree. You can still find the cert programs.

As far as an LVN/LPN goes, depends on where your stationed. California would allow Corpsman to take the test to become one but you couldn’t do anything with it. Basically you have a job title of LVN/LPN but you can’t move to another state and use it in a new state on what I heard last 2 years ago when I moved out of Cali.

Regardless, the more education you have in these areas the better, gives you a better opportunity to get promoted.

EDIT: As of 1996, Corpsman school was in San Diego and Great Lakes, both have now been shut down. I went to SD and they did NOT offer us the ability to take the Basic EMT National Registry, I was already an National Registered Intermediate-EMT. They shut down SD in 1997. My former colleague went to GL in 2004 and it was the same, no National Registry testing. I haven’t spoken with recent grads from the Corpsman/Army Medics Program to see if they offer it right before they graduate school. If anyone finds out please let me know or post a reply.
There are 3 levels of EMT
1.Basic ( lowest in skills and knowledge)
2. Intermediate ( more advanced skills than Basic, can push some meds but are limited)
3. Paramedic ( push all EMS meds and more skills)

Googling EMT Training:

How long is EMT training? How many weeks does it take to become an EMT?
The EMT Basic course is generally about 16 weeks in length. The required clinical work may take longer to complete. You should plan on the entire process taking about 6 months. Apr 10, 2020

Why is EMT pay so low?
There are other reasons EMS pay is so low. Certification is minimal — it only takes 120 to 150 hours of training to become an EMT (paramedics require significantly more). Ambulances in rural communities are often staffed by volunteers, which depresses wages for those who do pursue the role as a career. Oct 31, 2018

As a paramedic, you’ll earn more money than an EMT, which might affect your decision about becoming a paramedic vs. … Paramedics generally make an average of about $40,000 annually, but can earn as much as $70,000 or more a year. EMT pay averages $33,000 a year, with the top earners taking home $51,000 a year. Oct 14, 2011

How do I get hired as an EMT?

To get a job as an EMT, you must complete an associate’s degree and pass the National EMT certification exam. You also require a license and certification. It is essential to have good communication skills because you need to be in contact with other EMTs and physicians while transporting patients to the hospital.

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Military EMT Training




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