How To Become A Paramedic In California

How To Become A Paramedic In California

Levels of EMT

Emergency Medical Technician-Basic (EMT-B)
Emergency Medical Technician-Intermediate (EMT-I)
Emergency Medical Technician-Paramedic (EMT-P)

National Registry State

Required to pass NREMT and state exam.



  • At least 18 years old
  • Free of felony convictions
  • Must provide proof of health insurance
  • Must be immunized from: measles, mumps, rubella, Hepatitis B, and PPD for tuberculosis
  • EMT-P:

  • At least 21 years old
  • High School diploma or GED
  • Must provide proof of health insurance
  • Must complete a pre-paramedic course for candidates with less than 2 years EMT experience on an ALS ambulance
  • Length of License

    2 years

    License Maintenance Requirements

    EMT-B: EMT skills verification and 24 hour EMT refresher course OR 24 hours of continuing education
    EMT-I/P: 48 hours of continuing education with skills evaluation

    Continuing Education Requirements by Level

    Total Hours:
    EMT-B: 24 hours
    EMT-I: 48 hours
    EMT-P: 48 hours

    Regulating State Agency

    California Emergency Medical Services Authority (CEMSA)

    Scope of Practice

    Each county’s Local Emergency Medical Service Agency (LEMSA) issues the standard operating procedures which vary based on local needs as supervised by the California Emergency Medical Services Authority.

    Special Certifications

    Tactical Medicine: the California Emergency Medical Services Authority (EMSA) sets the state-wide medical standards utilized by POST.


    Northern California: complete Nor-Cal EMS Emergency Medical Responder Course


    California’s scope of practice is dictated by each individual county. Therefore, in order to become a licensed and practicing EMT/paramedic in California one must pass the NREMT and be certified by the state in addition to applying/meeting the requirements of one/multiple counties. The cost of (re)certification in each county differs. Below are the listed fees for state certification. It is possible to be certified in more than one county.

    EMT-B: $45 initial certification
    EMT-I: $50 initial certification
    EMT-P: $160 initial certification

    Educational Requirements

    Completion of a CEMSA approved EMS training course. Additionally one may be required to take a Local Emergency Medical Service Agency (LEMSA) certification course depending on the county you wish to practice in.

    Accredited Schools for 2013

  • Absolute Safety Training Inc – Chico, CA
  • American River College – Sacramento, CA
  • Bakersfield College – Bakersfield, CA
  • Butte Community College – Oroville, CA
  • California EMS Academy – Foster City, CA
  • California State University-CSUS Prehospital Education Program – Sacramento, CA
  • City College of San Francisco – San Francisco, CA
  • College of the Redwoods – Arcata, CA
  • Crafton Hills College – Yucaipa, CA
  • Cuesta College – San Louis Obispo, CA
  • Emergency Medical Sciences Training Institute – Stockton, CA
  • Emergency Training Services, Inc – Santa Cruz, CA
  • Foothill College – Palo Alto, CA
  • Fresno City College – Fresno, CA
  • Fresno County Paramedic Program/Fresno City College Consortium – Fresno, CA
  • Imperial Valley Community College – Imperial, CA
  • Los Angeles County Emergency Medical Services Agency – Santa Fe Springs, CA
  • Mendocino-Lake Community College District – Ukiah, CA
  • Moreno Valley College – Riverside, CA
  • Mt. San Antonio College – Walnut, CA
  • Napa Valley College – Napa, CA
  • National College of Technical Instruction-Riverside – Roseville, CA
  • National College of Technical Instruction-San Diego – San Diego, CA
  • National College of Technical Instruction-Santa Barbara – Buellton, CA
  • National College of Technical Instruction-Bay Area (Livermore) – Livermore, CA
  • National College of Technical Instruction-Roseville – Roseville, CA
  • National College of Technical Instruction-Siskiyous County – Weed, CA
  • Palomar Community College – Escondido, CA
  • Point Loma Nazarene University/EMSTA College for EMS – Santee, CA
  • Saddleback College – Mission Viejo, CA
  • Santa Rosa Junior College – Windsor, CA
  • Southwestern College-San Diego – San Diego, CA
  • UCLA Centre for Prehospital Care-Daniel Freeman – Inglewood, CA
  • University of Antelope Valley (UAV) – Lancaster, CA
  • Ventura College- School of Prehospital and Emergency Medicine – Ventura, CA
  • Victor Valley College – Victorville, CA
  • WestMed College – San Jose, CA
  • As of 3/08/2011

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