rn as emt

  1. Hello! Does anyone know if an RN can function as an EMT in the State of Wisconsin (or where I could find this informaiton)? Thanks
  2. Visit asmommy profile page

    About asmommy

    Joined: Nov '07; Posts: 2


  3. by   Tweety
    Welcome to Allnurses. I'll move this question to the WI forum. Perhaps you should check with the regulartory board that regulates the EMT in that state?
  4. by   intuition
    We have an RN in our ER that works with an EMS rig. So yes, you can but I don't think your title is an EMT. I would call up one of your local ER's and ask for the EMS Coordinator or call one of your local ambulance companies and ask to speak to the chief or supervisor. Sorry I couldn't help you out more, but I do know it is possible to work on an ambulance service. U may have to take a test.
  5. by   asmommy
    Thank you for responding!!!!:spin:
  6. by   EricJRN
    Here's a phone number for the EMS Office at the WI Dept of Health and Family Services, where they should be able to address your concerns:


    It doesn't look like Wisconsin has anything similar to IL's Prehospital RN (PHRN), but it doesn't hurt to check with them.

  7. by   rn/writer
    As of last year, you would still have to take an EMT course. WI does not have a special certification for pre-hospital RNs as IL and several other places do. Though it might sound unfair, there are some convincing arguments for keeping it this way.

    EMT tasks in the field involve more than just the medical side of things. You have to learn extrication techniques, crowd control, traffic control, how to provide treatment in an overturned vehicle and many other care and assessment practices that an RN isn't likely to have been taught. An RN taking an EMT course would no doubt have a leg up on students who have no medical background, but should not assume that they'll do equally well in the non-medical aspects. I have been in classes and on departments with farmers, engineers, teachers, and railroad workers who were aces at the technical aspects of climbing and lifting and extrication and was glad to have their form of expertise.

    I would encourage you to take an EMT course for another reason as well.

    While RN and EMT training contain a fair amount of overlap, there are some important distinctions between the two that can get you into a world of trouble if you blur the lines. EMT protocols are different. They focus on aspects of care that hospital folk rarely see. And they often rely on a person's skill in improvising and braving field conditions that you would not run across in an ER. It's vital that folks with previous medical training of any sort learn to put that background on a back burner long enough to acquire the EMT perspective or they will find it difficult to distinguish between their varied roles. This can mean overstepping EMT boundaries, an action that can create all sorts of problems.

    Often, you can get permission from medical control to go above and beyond EMT limitations if you are an RN or some equally skilled type of clinician, but it's crucial that you are able to keep your focus consistent with the license you are operating under at the time. The skills are one thing. The legalities can be another.

    If you are thinking of running with a particular department, they will usually pay for your training and perhaps let you go on runs as a trainee. This is a great way to get to know your future crewmates and learn where things are in the ambo and other fun stuff.

    EMT training takes one semester. Yeah, time is tight during that stretch, but it's a wonderful way to grow into the new discipline.

    I wish you well.
  8. by   YellowFinchFan
    Quote from asmommy
    Hello! Does anyone know if an RN can function as an EMT in the State of Wisconsin (or where I could find this informaiton)? Thanks

    In NJ you have to become an EMT even if you are an RN if you want to ride on a rig.

    t's different training (in that you function 'in the field') Some of the basics will be very "basic" to you but as a prehospital medical response you are limited to what you can do. I did learn alot basic first aid (holding traction on a broken femur) doing a quick trauma assessment in a street broken glass everywhere or climbing in to the back of a carwreck to hold someone's head while the jaws of life cut around you both....it's different from being an RN in a controlled enviroment and the EMT training does help you realize that. Plus there is an exam to take etc.......

    You could become a paramedic but they have further training and intubate,give emerg drugs,start IV's in the field....

    I am an RN and I volunteer too as an EMT first responder. Both require all kinds of recertificatios and continuing ed classes!

    good luck
  9. by   PsychNurseWannaBe
    Make sure that you understand the implications of an RN working as an EMT. I believe that this is considered "working below your license."

    Here is the White Papers from the WI Board of Nursing.

    Read; Nurses Practicing At a Level Below Their Licensure