New Paramedic Program Starts at ACTC Next Fall

Ashland Community and Technical College is starting a Paramedic Technology program fall 2012.

The demand for healthcare professionals is expected to continue to grow well into the future, and many of our students seek careers that will provide them with a variety of employment opportunities. Partnering with the Kentucky Fire Commission is making it possible for us to expand our offerings in the emergency medical services area, said Janie Kitchen, Dean of Academic Affairs.

For those who already have emergency medical technician training, Paramedic Technology is an opportunity to advance in the field. It is also a career pathway for those entering the health care for the first time.

What is a Paramedic?

A paramedic is a healthcare professional who provides pre-hospital care for medical emergencies and trauma. Care is delivered in ambulance, mobile advanced life support units, industrial on site units, fire departments and other sites.

Because they often work in the same type of emergency situations as emergency medical technicians (EMTS), there is often confusion about what paramedics and EMTs do. EMTs provide basic life support services such as performing CPR, administering oxygen, taking vital signs and providing spinal immobilizations and splinting.

Paramedic duties may include starting an IV, giving fluids, administering medications, defibrillating the heart, performing a surgical airway, inserting a breathing tube, decompressing a collapsed lung, managing cardiac monitors and interpreting EKGs..

EMT training takes from three to six months while paramedic training takes one and a half to two years, and people must be an EMT before beginning the paramedic course.

ACTC, in conjunction with State Fire Rescue Training - Area 10, has offered EMT training for over 20 years through the Fire/Rescue Service Program. Adding the Paramedic Technology program provides a path for advancement in the field.

Paramedic Courses

Students in the paramedic program at ACTC may earn either a certificate or Associate in Applied Science Degree. For both options, students take courses in anatomy amp; physiology, medical terminology, paramedic practice, clinical practical and management principles for healthcare. For the degree, students add general education courses in math, writing, communications, psychology and heritage/humanities subjects.

Credit toward the Associate in Applied Science degree may be awarded to currently practicing paramedics.

The program meets the standards of the U.S. Department of Transportation National Standard Curriculum for Paramedics and KCTCS Kentucky Board of Emergency Medical Services. Graduates are eligible to take the Emergency Medical Technician-Paramedic (EMT-P) National Registry Examination.

Classes will be held at ACTCs Roberts Drive Campus, located at the junction of Bob McCullough Drive and Roberts Drive in Ashland.

June 1 is the deadline to apply for the fall paramedic class. Enrollment is limited, and a selective admissions process is followed. Applicants must submit both a Paramedic Program and ACTC application. Applicants must also meet Kentucky Board of Emergency Medical Services application requirements and be certified EMTs upon acceptance into the program.

Paramedic applications are available at the State Fire Rescue Training - Area 10 Office on the Roberts Drive Campus, Building 5 Room 515, and the Admissions Offices at the College Drive and Technology Drive Campuses. College applications and class schedules are on the web: ashland.kctcs.edu.

For more information, contact the Paramedic Program at 606/326-2459 or email: cstewart0001@kctcs.edu or mjohnson0483@kctcs.edu .