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.
“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.”
Learn more about COVID-19 response and government actions with these resources:
- NREMT extends 2020 recertification deadline, modifies requirements due to COVID-19
- NREMT approves provisional certifications during national emergency
- Minnesota issues ‘5-day Emergency Suspension of Ambulance Services’ memo
- Minn. EMS agencies asked to maintain normal operations during emergency
- EMS Compact declared operational