Becoming an EMT in Nebraska
The State of Nebraska issues licenses to Emergency Medical Services (EMS) personnel through the Department of Health and Human Services. All levels of Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) are classified as Out-Of-Hospital Emergency Care Providers and Nebraska will not charge any fee for any initial EMS license. Nebraska EMT training stands out from other states because they offer tuition reimbursement for help with any level of EMT training.
Nebraska currently recognizes five levels of EMT licenses in the state, but only issues licenses for four levels of certification. The 4 licensing levels are Emergency Medical Responders, Emergency Medical Technicians, Advanced Emergency Medical Technicians, and Paramedics.
They no longer certify EMT-Intermediates (EMT-I) in Nebraska, but they still recognize EMT-I as a valid EMS level.
Nebraska EMS Levels
Emergency Medical Responder (EMR)
Emergency Medical Technician (EMT)
EMT Intermediate (EMT-I) Renew and Reinstate only
Advanced Emergency Medical Technician (AEMT)
Anyone interested in becoming an EMT in Nebraska should consider joining the Nebraska Emergency Medical Services Association at http://www.nemsa.org.
There are many benefits of membership if you have a passion for EMS, including the opportunity to apply for an EMT school scholarship in Nebraska.
NEMSA is a group whose interest is in providing for the citizens of Nebraska only, which makes it a unique opportunity for EMTs in Nebraska. Also, student membership is free for anyone going through school to become an emergency medical provider.
EMT Tuition Reimbursement
A great thing about training as an EMT in Nebraska is that they offer the unique opportunity for EMS Tuition Reimbursement. This is because Unicameral, the Nebraska Legislature Body, sets aside money for EMS education reimbursement.
How do you get tuition reimbursement?
Nebraska EMT candidates must check their eligibility and then apply for tuition reimbursement. Tuition reimbursement is available for both Initial EMT Applicants and Reinstatement Requests, but I will only discuss new (Initial) EMT applicants here.
To be eligible, Nebraska EMT applicants must have an active (not temporary) Nebraska EMS license and be a member of a licensed EMS service that is located in Nebraska.
This means you need to be working or volunteering with a Nebraska licensed and located EMS company. Also, make sure you are requesting reimbursement at the same level that you are licensed.
How to Apply
Time is an important factor when applying for EMT tuition reimbursement in Nebraska. One reason is Nebraska has a limited number of funds and pays requests on a first come, first serve basis.
The second reason is that payment amount is tiered, based on the amount of days between when the application packet is received and when the EMT course was completed. (See Table Below)
For these reasons I strongly urge you to send in your application for reimbursement within 7 days of completing your Nebraska EMT training program. This will increase the likelihood you will be awarded the highest dollar amount allowed for reimbursement.
If you are reading this and already went to school 5-6 months ago but never applied for reimbursement, it might not be too late. However, you won’t be eligible to receive as much funding.
In order to officially request tuition reimbursement, Nebraska EMT candidates must fill out the Office of Emergency Health Systems Licensure Initial Education Course/ Reinstatement Refresher Reimbursement Form.
The form can not be mailed or faxed, it must be sent by email along with any supporting documentation to:
Examples of supporting documents you may need to scan and send by email are a copy of your EMT Course Completion Certificate, a blank check, or a W-9 form.
You can find the form and full Nebraska EMS tuition reimbursement instructions here.
By now you are probably wondering:
How much money can I get back?
The answer is a little complicated to explain so the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services has put together a table to explain it clearly. The information below is accurate as of 2/21/2018.
EMS Tuition Reimbursement Amounts
Course Completion to Request Date
Within 60 Days
Emergency Medical Responder Course
Emergency Medical Technician Course
Advanced Emergency Medical Technician Course
Pre-Hospital Emergency Care Course for Nurses
EMR to EMT Bridge Course
Nebraska’s Emergency Medical Technicians are under the jurisdiction of the Nebraska Emergency Medical Services Program, a part of the Department of Health and Human Services. They are located at:
Department of Health and Human Services Division of Public Health Licensure Unit
301 Centennial Mall South, Third Floor PO Box 94986
Lincoln, NE 68509-4986
Nebraska EMT School
Nebraska EMT schools will prepare out-of-hospital providers to respond to real world emergencies. Nebraska EMT training will teach students the basic roles and responsibilities of the EMT. Students will learn how to quickly assess patients, correctly perform lifting and moving, and treat patients using basic or advanced life support.
Nebraska school cost and length will vary based on whether they are EMR, EMT, AEMT or Paramedic training programs.
All Nebraska EMT training graduates will learn how to perform the skills within their scope of practice. This includes rapid patient assessments and patient care.
Nebraska EMT School Requirements
Nebraska EMT training programs will have a set of requirements that must be met for acceptance. Each Nebraska EMT school can add requirements as desired, but most will have a similar set of prerequisites.
Here is a list of common requirements in Nebraska to get accepted into an EMS program.
• A parent signature may be required if the Nebraska EMT student is under 19 years old.
• EMT schools in Nebraska require a high school diploma or GED certificate.
• If you attend a Nebraska EMT training program through a college you may need proof of college level reading, writing, Math or English proficiency skills. Students can use ACT or SAT scores, college transcripts, Compass, Asset, and Accuplacer tests as proof.
• Nebraska EMT students will need to show proof of current CPR Certification. Nebraska State and schools allow CPR from a variety of classes, but the most universally accepted CPR cards are the AHA BLS CPR for the Healthcare Provider and the ARC Professional Rescuer card.
• Nebraska EMT training programs will usually require a Criminal Background Check.
• Nebraska EMT training programs will often require that students pass a urine Drug Screening for admission.
• EMT training in Nebraska will often require students fill out and submit an application.
• A Nebraska EMT student will need to show proof of ID using a copy of your Driver’s License or Birth Certificate.
• EMT schools in Nebraska require applicants show proof of immunizations or titers for the following:
– MMR (Measles, Mumps, Rubella)
– Varicella (Chicken Pox)
– Tdap (Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis) May be recommended.
• Nebraska EMT applicants will need to show proof they have begun the Hepatitis B three shot vaccine series.
• An EMT in Nebraska will need to show proof of a negative two-step skin test (Mantoux PPD Skin Test) for tuberculosis, or a chest x-ray. A chest X-ray is needed instead of a TB test if the EMT student has had a BCG vaccine.
• Many Nebraska EMT training programs require applicants to pass a physical or sign a form saying they can comply with the physical demands of EMT work. This clears students to meet the physical demands involved in EMT schooling. Often the physical can be done at the school’s Student Health Center.
Below is an example of the kind of physical requirements a Nebraska EMT will need to agree too.
– An EMT in Nebraska will have the ability to climb stairs, sit, stand, walk, push, kneel and reach in many directions.
– A Nebraska EMT must be able to demonstrate depth perception, verbal and written communication and the ability to work well with others.
– An EMT in Nebraska will need to distinguish colors, distance, objects, people, sharp, dull, and hot from cold.
– A Nebraska EMT will need to perform auscultations, use gross motor skills, use fine motor skills, and show good judgement.
– An EMT in Nebraska should have the ability to lift or carry up to 125 pounds.
Nebraska AEMT School Requirements
Advanced emergency medical technicians in Nebraska will need to meet all of the above requirements for EMT school along with the following:
• Nebraska AEMT applicants must be currently certified as an EMT.
• AEMT schools in Nebraska require applicants to be at least 18 years old. You can use a copy of a driver’s license or birth certificate as proof of age.
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