Veteran EMT Support Act needs more congressional sponsors

The NAEMT calls on EMS professionals to ask their representatives in Congress to support military medics

WASHINGTON — Legislation before the U.S. Congress, aiming to help veteran military medics, is the focus of an NAEMT legislative advocacy effort.

The NAEMT, in an email to members, calls on EMS professionals to contact their elected representatives in the House and Senate to co-sponsor the Veteran Emergency Medical Technicians Support Act of 2015 (S. 453/H.R. 1818). The bill will help military medics transition effectively and efficiently into vacant civilian EMT and paramedic positions upon completion of military service, and reduce unemployment among veterans.

Tens of thousands of military medics are departing from active duty and available to enter the civilian workforce, but are instead required to duplicate their military medic training to obtain a state licensure to practice. The Veteran Emergency Medical Technicians Support Act of 2015 makes it easier and faster for veterans who served as military medics to earn certification as civilian EMTs and paramedics, and serves to fill an essential public function vacancy in communities across the U.S.

EMS professionals can learn more and support this bill by asking their members of Congress to support the legislation. 

The Veteran Emergency Medical Technicians Support Act of 2015:

  • Amends the Public Health Service Act to direct the Department of Health and Human Services to establish a demonstration program for states with a shortage of EMTs to streamline state requirements and procedures to assist veterans who completed military EMT training to meet state EMT certification, licensure and other requirements;
  • Determines the extent to which the requirements for the education, training, and skill level of emergency medical technicians in the state are equivalent to requirements for the education, training, and skill level of military emergency medical technicians;
  • Identifies methods, such as waivers, for military emergency medical technicians to forego or meet any such equivalent state requirements; and
  • Gives priority to states that demonstrate a shortage of emergency medical technicians.

According to a recent Bureau of Labor Statistic's Occupational Outlook, there will be 55,000 new civilian EMT and paramedic jobs created between 2012 and 2022. The projected job growth rate is 23 percent — more rapid than the average for all occupations.

The bill requires no additional funds to be authorized to be appropriated.

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