Another American to Australia?

skippy54

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Hey guys, I know there's quite a few of these threads floating around and they were all informative in their own way. However, my questions are coming from a different starting point which makes me want to seek.. clarification.

I am (start drumroll) an EMT-basic. That's right, nothing more. For the Australians who I hope can answer me, this is essentially BLS sans the IV's. There's only 140 or so hours of in class education, and we give five drugs - O2, ASA, what you call salbutamol, epinephrine via auto-injector, and ipratroprium bromide. We also can give nitroglycerin, so long as the patient has their own and is incapable of taking it for themselves.

I'm not wondering if I can be hired as a paramedic and hop on the street right away - that would be ridiculous. What I'm trying to discern is what the path to becoming an Australian paramedic would be, and how to go about it. It's hard for me to justify getting my EMT-P license in the United States, and paying the money to do so, when it would ultimately be worthless abroad. Besides, I'd rather learn more than how to respond to symptom X or situation Y with protocol Z.

My questions, in no particular order:

1.) With an EMT-Basic license, and full time experience of three years in BLS, what would I qualify to test for? I imagine a certificate IV includes intravenous access, so that's right out, but I'm just guessing - it's been impossible to find a common scope of practice.

2.) Should I find an employer who will put me through school while I work for them, or go to school and then find an employer? It seems the former is more typical, but probably more difficult to do for a foreigner.

3.) Does anybody know of a state/territory who is hiring, and works with foreign applicants? St John's was friendly enough on the telephone, and said they do accept international applicants, but it was hard to get much further than that. I think she was having a hard time understanding me thanks to the American accent.

What I've read of Aussie EMS makes me smile and get giddy, I just want to make sure I'm taking the best route and not running in to dead ends.

Thanks for reading, and thanks in advance for any help!
 

MrBrown

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You would be required to complete a three year Bachelor of Health Science degree in Paramedicine and then get hired. Competition is tough.

The problem here is you would need a student visa then a work visa, an employer is unlikely to sponsor you for a work visa without substantive experience as you will not meet the points requirements for immigration.

Correct you are in saying there is no comparable scope of practice, what you have is about a third of a Paramedic scope and maybe a quarter of an Intensive Care Paramedic but with perhaps one thireith of the education, yes you read that right.

Browns advice is to find a reputable Paramedic (ALS) program and do that, get a couple years of experience in a high quality system, upgrade to a Bachleors Degree in Paramedicine (which Brown knows in the US are few and far between) and think of Australia again in maybe five years.

Oh and stay the heck away from WA, they are death merchants.
 

Scott33

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Should I find an employer who will put me through school while I work for them, or go to school and then find an employer
Immigration to another county involves obtaining a visa. Anyone can get a job abroad, but the employer does not issue visas - the government does. You have to satisfy their requirements, not the employers. Unless you already have an "in" to Australia (immediate family, dual nationality etc), as an EMT-Basic, you are going to have a tough time.

Unlike the US, Australian immigration does have a "points system", but an 140 hour EMT-Basic course will not be nearly enough. Think - degrees in engineering etc.

You may be able to study in Australia, in which case you will have a student visa. This means you cannot work (other than a few hours "on campus" in some instances) and will be out of status, and therefore deportable, when your study ends.

Australian EMS, like many other countries, are requiring degrees as a paramedic for entry to practice.
 
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Melclin

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The cert IV does not include IV. IV stuff is considered a fairly big deal here compared to the US it would seem. RNs for example cannot start IVs straight out of uni. They have to do an extra course. So cert IV ambulance attendants most certainly cannot.

Something to look into might be the distance education programs.

I'm fairly certain Charles Sturt just started one, but you would still need some face time here and a student visa. None the less, maybe something worth inquiring about.

I know we have some reciprocity deals regarding exchange students in the UK. You might (its a long shot) be able to fineagal something like that, on the off chance there is a uni in the US that has a paramedic program we have anything to do with.

At the very least if you further you education in the US first, which seems like the best option, you will want to make sure its recognised by Aus universities so you can get some credit and its recognised in the visa crap.

Your best bet is to marry an Australian :p
 

MrBrown

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is Natalie Imbruligia still single? :D

Also is should be noted in Australia when you see "Certificate IV" its the roman number and not IV as in intravenous cannulation. While we have Certificate Level 1, Level 2 etc AU use Cert I, Cert II etc ... kind of lime EMT-I vs EMT 1 in California.

Volunteer Ambulance Officers (of which Brown believes Tas is the only state to still use volunteers) complete Certificate IV in Emergency Health but its a very basic qualification analougous to somewhere between First Responder and EMT in the US.
 

Melclin

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is Natalie Imbruligia still single? :D

Also is should be noted in Australia when you see "Certificate IV" its the roman number and not IV as in intravenous cannulation. While we have Certificate Level 1, Level 2 etc AU use Cert I, Cert II etc ... kind of lime EMT-I vs EMT 1 in California.

Volunteer Ambulance Officers (of which Brown believes Tas is the only state to still use volunteers) complete Certificate IV in Emergency Health but its a very basic qualification analougous to somewhere between First Responder and EMT in the US.
No.

I've taken to watching women's cricket. Its a joke of a sport, but I have a massive crush on one of their bowlers. Imbruglia is safe...for now.

We have vollies here in Vic and I believe they still make extensive use of them in Western Australia.
 

MrBrown

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No.

I've taken to watching women's cricket. Its a joke of a sport, but I have a massive crush on one of their bowlers. Imbruglia is safe...for now.

We have vollies here in Vic and I believe they still make extensive use of them in Western Australia.
So you probably have the entire X Factor on DVR or something right? :D

Brown caught some of the womens ASB Tennis Classic here a few weeks ago ...

Anyway, WA should be sawed off out of embarrasment and never mentioned in the context of twenty first century paramedic practice as far as Australia is concerned.
 

Melclin

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So you probably have the entire X Factor on DVR or something right? :D

Brown caught some of the womens ASB Tennis Classic here a few weeks ago ...

Anyway, WA should be sawed off out of embarrasment and never mentioned in the context of twenty first century paramedic practice as far as Australia is concerned.
No X factor. Too busy watching Scarlett Johannsen films, interviews and grainy telephoto lens footage on repeat.

Well yeah but they've got all my money buried in their ground, so someone has to dig it up and send it to the eastern states. I hear their mine medics earn a pretty penny.

Anyway, if you still wanna come to Australia, OP, after listening to us lecherous antipodean homo paramedicus' then I reckon that getting formal healthcare uni education in the states is a must first.
 

skippy54

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Therein lies the problem - there is no formal university based paramedic education in the United States. It takes roughly three semesters to go from layman to paramedic, and this is done through tech schools.

If cert iv ambulance officers are less than an emt-b, there may be more hope than meets the eye. Ambulance officer is listed as a skilled occupation on the GSM list. St John said they would take my application with my qualifications, so we'll see.. it would still mean 3 or so years of school, which is a-okay by me.
 

Scott33

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St John said they would take you as the are predominantly volunteers, so what would you do for work seeing as visas are usually job-specific.

See the problem here?
 

skippy54

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They said I would be considered if I applied for a full time student paramedic spot. It's not a volly thing.

I must ask, though, what's wrong with St John?
 

MrBrown

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St John are death merchants who kill people. They do not have peadiatric guidelines or amiodarone.
 

Stew

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In my brief scan I think people are confusing the "cert IV" aspect. It is read as Cert 4 (certificate 4, below a Diploma-or in American speak an associates) not cert intravenous.

All good?!

What has been said is pretty much the go in Australia, internal nationally recognised training provided by Ambulance Services is on the way out/has already gone. Completing a three year undergraduate degree is almost the only way to go if you're only an EMT-B.

Good luck whichever way you go.
 

jrm818

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Therein lies the problem - there is no formal university based paramedic education in the United States. It takes roughly three semesters to go from layman to paramedic, and this is done through tech schools.
QUOTE]

Just noticed this: not quite true. There are several 4 year programs in the states. JEMS had a list at one point. Off the top of my head the University of Pittsburgh and perhaps George Washington?, among a few others.
 

skippy54

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Well, having read everyone's advice I've gone ahead and tossed a few applications off to universities.

I do have a question, though. What's different about Victoria? All the other universities had a pretty strict permanent residence/citizen requirement for the paramedic course, whereas in Victoria you can complete your clinical rotations with AV regardless.

What gives? :)
 
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