Military Veteran Pathways to EMS Certification and Licensure
EMS Certification and Licensure Information for Military Veterans
In addition to the FAQ’s provided below, additional information for military veterans seeking EMT or AEMT certification can be obtained by contacting a local EMS agency. The EMS Authority paramedic licensure unit will provide individual assistance to potential paramedic applicants.
If I am a current or former member of the military with medical training, how do I become a certified EMT in California?
- Any individual that possesses a valid National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT) EMT card is eligible to apply for certification as an EMT in California.
- The following individuals with military training and experience may take a challenge exam in order to obtain a California EMT course completion record which would allow them to take the NREMT-EMT exam. Upon passing the NREMT exam they would then be eligible for certification.
- Individuals who can provide documented evidence of having successfully completed an emergency medical service training program of the Armed Forces of the United States within the preceding two (2) years that meets the U.S. DOT National EMS Education Standards (DOT HS 811 077A, January 2009) may be permitted to take the challenge exam.
- Upon review of documentation, the EMT certifying entity may also allow an individual to challenge if the individual was active in the last two (2) years in a prehospital emergency medical classification of the Armed Services of the United States, which does not have formal recertification requirements. These individuals may be required to take a refresher course or complete CE courses as a condition of certification.
If I am a current or former member of the military with medical training, how do I become a certified Advanced EMT (AEMT) in California?
- Any individual that possesses a valid NREMT-AEMT card is eligible to apply for certification as an AEMT in California.
- Individuals who can provide an AEMT course completion record or other documented proof such as a military training record demonstrating successful completion of the topics contained in an approved AEMT training program.
- The course completion record will be reviewed by the local EMS agency for a determination of equivalency to the U.S. DOT National EMS Standards.
- Upon review of the documentation, an individual with training equivalent to the U.S. DOT National EMS Standards will be eligible to take the NREMT- AEMT assessment exam.
- Upon passing the NREMT-AEMT assessment exam, the individual will be eligible for certification.
- Because AEMTs are not approved in every county, the EMS Authority recommends contacting your nearest local EMS agency to determine if AEMTs are approved in that county.
If I am a current or former member of the military with medical training, how do I become a licensed paramedic in California?
- Any individual that possesses a valid NREMT-P card is eligible to apply for licensure as a paramedic in California.
- Individuals who can provide a paramedic course completion record, or other documented proof of successful completion of an approved paramedic training program, including approved military paramedic training programs, completed within the last 2 years.
- The course completion record will be reviewed by the EMS Authority for a determination of equivalency to the U.S. DOT National EMS Standards.
- Upon review of the documentation, an individual with training equivalent to the U.S. DOT National EMS Standards from an approved training program will be eligible to take the NREMT- P assessment exam.
- Upon passing the NREMT-P assessment exam, the individual will be eligible to submit an application for licensure.
The licensure process requires the following forms:
- Paramedic License Application – Initial Out-of-State Applicant
- Statement of Citizenship, Alienage, and Immigration Status for State Paramedic License Application/Renewal (Form IS-01), along with one piece of documentation as described on pages 4-8 of the Form IS-01
- Submit to the DOJ a completed Applicant Fingerprint Card (FD-258) for a state and federal criminal history check to the California Department of Justice (DOJ), or if you are already residing in California you must submit your fingerprints by using a Live Scan Agency for submitting your fingerprints for the criminal background check. If you are outside the state of California you will have to request a fingerprint card. (forms and instructions)
- Submit proof of 40 ALS field contacts during an internship or training. This can be in the form of a letter from your training program medical director or commanding officer.
Forms are available by calling (916) 323-9875, or on the Paramedic Licensure Page