Below you can find information about the training required for the different EMT personnel including drivers, EMTs basic and advanced, what training costs, and optional/advanced training.
Our drivers are required to maintain current CPR certification (4 hours), which is provided in-house by our certified CPR instructors. Drivers shall complete an EMR course (80 hours) and maintain a current EMR license. Drivers, as well as EMTs who wish to have driving privileges, are also required to take an Emergency Vehicle Operations Course (EVOC) through Southwest Wisconsin Technical College. EVOC training is generally 8 hours, including classroom and hands-on driving practice. With the completion of the new SWTC Public Safety Training Complex, EVOC training is more readily available and greatly enhanced.
EMT-Basics provide basic first aid and life support to the sick and injured. The EMT course focuses on patient assessment skills and first aid for trauma and medical patients. Typical procedures provided by EMTs include CPR, automated external defibrillation, mechanical ventilation using a bag-valve mask, placement of air way adjuncts such as oropharyngeal and nasopharyngeal airways, splinting (including spinal immobilization and traction splints), and suctioning. In addition, EMTs are trained to assist patients with administration of nitroglycerin and aspirin for cardiac patients, metered dose inhalers such as albuterol for patients experiencing difficulty breathing, epinephrine for allergic reactions, oral glucose and glucagon for diabetic patients. The course is 190 hours and is usually conducted two nights a week for several months. Following the course, students take a written and practical test to receive their certification as an EMT.
The State of Wisconsin requires 40 hours of refresher training every three years to maintain an EMT license. Wisconsin recently initiated an “alternate refresher” program, allowing students to obtain this refresher training by attending seminars, local training offerings, and other opportunities to fulfill many of the requirements for license renewal. All EMTs need to maintain a current CPR certification which needs to be renewed every 2 years.
Since 2009, Lancaster EMS has provided care at the AEMT (Formerly Intermediate Technician) level of service. The AEMT course builds on the EMT-Basic curriculum. Students learn advanced patient assessment, communication skills, and beginning advanced life support interventions. AEMTs are able to start intravenous lines, provide IV solutions, and administer additional drugs such as dextrose for diabetics, Narcan for suspected drug overdoses, Atrovent for persons having difficulty breathing, and nitroglycerine for cardiac patients. The AEMT course is approximately 190 hours and includes a written and practical test. An additional 50 hours of refresher training is required every three years. Training to the EMT-A level is OPTIONAL for Lancaster EMS members; only EMT-Basic certification is required. All EMTs must maintain a current CPR certification which needs to be renewed every 2 years.
Lancaster EMS covers training costs for driver training, EMR, EMT-Basic, AEMT, and refresher training for our members. This includes tuition, books, and testing expenses. Some costs are paid upfront by the service, and some are reimbursed conditionally after you have served for a period of time as a member. Members also have the opportunity throughout the year to attend conferences, seminars and other training courses, many of which are paid for by Lancaster EMS.
Lancaster EMS members have a wide variety of optional training opportunities throughout the year. Members are free to choose those courses which interest them, and none of the advanced training is required of our EMTs. Examples of training opportunities include firefighter rehabilitation, rope rescue, confined space rescue, grain bin rescue, swiftwater rescue, ice rescue, hazardous materials decontamination, medical mass-casualty response, and many more. Members are also welcome to attend monthly training with the fire department’s vehicle extrication (“Jaws of Life”) team. Some of our members choose to participate in the regional specialized rescue partnership, known as the Southwest Wisconsin Regional Technical Rescue Team. Most of the costs for advanced training for our active members are covered by Lancaster EMS.
Popular training conferences include the Wisconsin Emergency Medical Services Association (WEMSA) conference and the EMS Trendsetters Conference in January. There are many training opportunities provided monthly by larger hospitals in the state along with our area medical helicopters providing landing zone education.