There are many factors that play a role in determining EMT salaries. Factors such as training, education and work setting have some impact on salaries for EMTs. The primary factors that determine EMT salaries, however, are location and experience/certification level. Since the demand for EMTs and Paramedic vary by state, city and county, the salaries will also vary by location. Obviously, the cost of living in a local market has a strong effect on salaries as well. EMTs, however, can improve their salaries by gaining more experience and attaining more certifications, such as EMT-Paramedic.
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median EMT salary was $30,360 in May 2010 (latest figures available). The middle 50 percent of EMTs earned between $24,070 and $39,590. The good news is that the highest 10 percent of EMTs earned more than $51,370. In general, your EMT salary range for less than 1 year of experience will be $10 to $13.50 per hour. For EMT’s with 1 to 4 years of experience, the EMT salary range will be $10 to $14 per hour. An EMT with 5 to 9 years of experience should expect a salary in the range of $11 to $16, while EMT salaries move to $12 to $18 for 10 to 19 years of experience. Finally, EMTs with more than 20 years of experience can expect an EMT salary range of $13 to $20. In general, EMTs seem to receive the same types of benefits as police officers and firefighters.
The Table below lists the Employment Numbers, Hourly Average Wages and Annual Average Wages for EMTs and Paramedics for 2010 (latest figures available)
|State||Employment||Average Hourly||Average Annual|
|District of Columbia||1,310||$ 23.97||49,870|
|New Hampshire||1,330||$ 15.38||31,980|
|New Jersey||7,260||$ 17.25||35,870|
|New Mexico||1,340||$ 14.54||30,230|
|New York||13,370||$ 17.75||36,910|
|North Carolina||8,940||$ 15.58||32,410|
|North Dakota||620||$ 14.29||29,720|
|Puerto Rico||2,730||$ 9.85||20,490|
|Rhode Island||780||$ 16.06||33,400|
|South Carolina||4,530||$ 15.18||31,570|
|South Dakota||770||$ 13.26||27,580|
|West Virginia||1,950||$ 11.72||24,370|
Source: BLS.gov, extracted February 8, 2012
EMT employment is expected to grow approximately 9% through the year 2018. The aging population demographic is largely driving the growth in job demand. Demand for EMTs and Paramedics increases as the aging population has more medical emergencies. In addition, EMTs must spend more time with patients die to dramatic overcrowding in emergency room facilities nationwide. Also, as hospitals become more specialized in their services, the demand for patient transport grows. Since patients are transferred by ambulance, a trained EMT or Paramedic must be utilized to monitor the patient's condition en route.
The most job opportunities for EMTs are expected to be in the private ambulance services. Local government based EMT jobs, including fire, police and third-service rescue squad departments are expected to be the most competitive EMT positions to obtain because of their better salaries and benefits.
As with most jobs, EMTs can improve their salaries through additional education and attaining higher certification levels, including the various NREMT certifications such as EMT-Intermediate and Paramedic.