Texas governor suspends regulations to increase EMS workforce

The state is allowing personnel who are qualified but not formally certified to expand their scope of practice, and is waiving test requirements for out-of-state providers


By Laura French

AUSTIN, Texas — Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has announced the suspension of some EMS regulations in order to increase the workforce responding to COVID-19 in the state.

Medical directors can now permit those who are qualified, but not formally certified, to provide services to patients, according to a statement from the governor’s office.  

This photo shows Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announcing the building of a 250-bed hospital during a press conference at the Texas State Capitol in Austin, Sunday, March 29, 2020. Abbott is suspending some EMS certification, testing and licensure requirements in order to increase the state's EMS workforce during the COVID-19 crisis. (Photo/Tom Fox, The Dallas Morning News via AP)
This photo shows Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announcing the building of a 250-bed hospital during a press conference at the Texas State Capitol in Austin, Sunday, March 29, 2020. Abbott is suspending some EMS certification, testing and licensure requirements in order to increase the state's EMS workforce during the COVID-19 crisis. (Photo/Tom Fox, The Dallas Morning News via AP)

“Local Medical Directors can expand the scope of practice for personnel who are qualified but not certified. Ex: Allowing EMTs, who are in paramedic school, to practice at that level without course completion,” the Association of Texas EMS Professionals wrote in their summary of the new rules on Facebook.

The governor’s order also waives some skills testing requirements for out-of-state AEMTs to work within the state and allows for delayed renewal application submissions and completion requirements for licensure.  

“Our EMS providers and first responders play a critical role in the front-line fight against COVID-19, and these suspensions remove barriers that could otherwise prevent a much-needed availability of essential EMS workers and first responders in our communities,” Abbot said in a statement. “The State of Texas is committed to supporting the EMS and first responder workforce and maximizing the number of available response services for Texans.”

 

 

A summary of Governor Abbott's actions for expanding the EMS workforce: 1. Local Medical Directors can expand the...

Posted by Association of Texas EMS Professionals on Thursday, April 2, 2020

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