Colorado or Bust

Emergency Metaphysics

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Colleagues, I originally posted this in the Colorado group on here, but I didn't get any responses, so I'm going to post it here. Here's my original post with its questions:

I'm en route to finish my EMT basic coursework and take the test in about 2 months. As far as I'm concerned this isn't too early to start job-hunting and exploring places worth living. So, for those that considered Colorado and for those working there now, what do you wish you knew before taking a job in Colorado? What do you wish you had known?

I'm a huge outdoor enthusiast, so Colorado is particularly attractive. I want a place that's not going to crush me financially and will accelerate the learning curve. I've just got my wife and a dog to move -- no kids -- so I can be a little more flexible (I think) with places to live.

I guess I need help gathering the intelligence on Colorado EMS in order to make a decision about whether it's worth my time to apply out there or not.

Humble thanks,
M.
 

Ensihoitaja

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Are you interested in the mountains, Denver Metro, Colorado Springs, or someplace else?

I assume you're going to take the National Registry, you'll need that to get a Colorado cert. You'll also need a background check that can take a couple weeks if you're from out of state. Here's a link to the state's certification FAQ that might help.
 
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Emergency Metaphysics

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Hi there, the short answer is: anywhere that'll hire me and does 911. As a new EMT I know I can't be too picky. Any additional advice is humbly appreciated.

Cheers.
 

Tigger

Dodges Pucks
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Hi there, the short answer is: anywhere that'll hire me and does 911. As a new EMT I know I can't be too picky. Any additional advice is humbly appreciated.

Cheers.
It's a big state. You gotta narrow it down for any semblance of targeted information.
 

Summit

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It's hard to go straight to 911 with no contacts. Try some out ofthe way mountain agencies like grand county or something or west or south like junction or Craig, but make sure you know what that means lifestyle wise.

If you ski you can try ski patrol but tryouts are in April and the job is seasonal.
 

TransportJockey

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You'll need to get your ekg and iv certs to even be competitive in getting a job as a basic
 

Ensihoitaja

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You'll need to get your ekg and iv certs to even be competitive in getting a job as a basic
Good point, I should have mentioned that. EKG is not as big a deal as IV. You're extremely unlikely to get hired for an ambulance job without your IV . Here's links to a couple classes:

Denver Health IV Cert Classes
Red Rocks Community College IV Cert Classes

It's a pretty simple class- 20-24 hours classroom plus a clinical shift or 2.

In the Denver Metro area, as an EMT, most places start EMTs on the wheelchair van, then work up to the ambulance. It typically doesn't take too long to work up. Rural/Metro-Pridemark and AMR would both give you the chance to work up to a 911 ambulance. Rural/Metro-Pridemark covers Aurora, Wheat Ridge, and Littleton (sort-of). AMR covers Golden and nearly all of Boulder County.
 

TransportJockey

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Does actioncare still do OFLA calls and run in security? They would be a start too
 

Tigger

Dodges Pucks
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Does actioncare still do OFLA calls and run in security? They would be a start too
Yes to both. Pretty much all the Denver privates run overflow 911 in Denver, some to a greater degree than others. I'm working with someone that transferred from AMR Denver and she did not have the greatest things to say. Said they did 1 or 2 or OLFAs a week and they were all pretty much the stuff that Denver Health does not deign to take.

That said I would avoid working for Action Care of possible. I did not have a good experience.

I'll post more later.
 

TransportJockey

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Yes to both. Pretty much all the Denver privates run overflow 911 in Denver, some to a greater degree than others. I'm working with someone that transferred from AMR Denver and she did not have the greatest things to say. Said they did 1 or 2 or OLFAs a week and they were all pretty much the stuff that Denver Health does not deign to take.

That said I would avoid working for Action Care of possible. I did not have a good experience.

I'll post more later.
I second that. My experience with Action Care was less than pleasant as well
 

Summit

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You'll need to get your ekg and iv certs to even be competitive in getting a job as a basic
I'll second that. Ekg is less important but equal to itls/phtls/tncc in importance for hiring.
 

Ripper

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Ok, so I am going to jump in on this thread. I have my NREMT Basic and my CT state AEMT which allows me to start lines (IVs), and a bunch of other stuff. I am very seriously considering moving out to Boulder with a buddy of mine. I have been working private and volley EMS for the past year. Im in one of, if not the busiest division in the Northeast for the private company. And yes its mostly 911's at the tune of 12 to 16 in a 12 hour shift.


With all that being said will my CT AEMT cert transfer to CO? How is the pay in CO for basics? How hard is it secure a position? And the biggest one I am planning on furthering my skills and becoming a Medic. Are there schools within 30 to 45 minutes, where I can obtain my medic.

I have been searching for all these answers, albeit I haven't spent much time and haven't found much info regarding.
 

TransportJockey

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Ok, so I am going to jump in on this thread. I have my NREMT Basic and my CT state AEMT which allows me to start lines (IVs), and a bunch of other stuff. I am very seriously considering moving out to Boulder with a buddy of mine. I have been working private and volley EMS for the past year. Im in one of, if not the busiest division in the Northeast for the private company. And yes its mostly 911's at the tune of 12 to 16 in a 12 hour shift.


With all that being said will my CT AEMT cert transfer to CO? How is the pay in CO for basics? How hard is it secure a position? And the biggest one I am planning on furthering my skills and becoming a Medic. Are there schools within 30 to 45 minutes, where I can obtain my medic.

I have been searching for all these answers, albeit I haven't spent much time and haven't found much info regarding.
Aemt will get you a basic card. That's it. I applied for reciprocity with my nremt-i/85 and that's all I got. I'll touch on the rest when I finish this call I'm on
 

Tigger

Dodges Pucks
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First things first. You need your Colorado EMT, IV certification, and CO driver's license before anyone is going to read your application. I have never taken an EKG class and have worked at a few places. Same with PHTLS.

As to actual employment...

Denver has a multitude of private companies that will hire no experience EMTs. Some are better than others, some put you on the wheelchair van first, some straight on an ambulance. With you will start on a van as an EMT almost assuredly with the same going for AMR Colorado Springs and sometimes Denver. Denver Health runs dual paramedic ambulances and does the majority of 911 in the city and county of Denver.

Colorado Springs/El Paso County 911 is AMR. Some fire districts do their own EMS, one (Security-Widefield) contracts to a Denver private (Action Care). There's a transfer service (Rocky Mountain) that does the Air Force Academy and Schriever AFB. They have a poor reputation.

Pueblo/Pueblo and Fremont Counties 911 is AMR.

Boulder/Boulder County is mostly AMR. Difficult to get into without AMR contacts.

Fort Collins/Larimer County is mostly Poudre Valley/UC Health. Also difficult to get on as an EMT.

Here's a list of Colorado EMS employers that I have explored in the past:

Ute Pass Regional Ambulance
Woodland Park and Teller/Park/Douglas/El Paso Counties
15FT plus PT medics and EMTs, P/B ambulances with 2 in Woodland Park, 1 in Florissant

Southwest Teller Health District EMS
Cripple Creek
2 P/B ambulances, 24s, out of Cripple Creek Fire Station
Hires PT EMTs and Medics

South Park Ambulance District
Fairplay and most of Park County
2 Double medic ambulances, 48s
Only hires medics, does hire PT

Grand County EMS
All of GC
4 stations, P/B ambulances, 48s

Northglenn Ambulance
Based north of Denver, IFTs all over
911 for South Adams County/Commerce City
P/B ambulances in fire stations (some)
Good rep from EMTLife

AMR COS
Colorado Springs Fire 911 contract, possibly El Paso County (out to bid)
Half P/B half double medic cars, mostly 12s, SSM. A few 24s from hard stations (medics only)
Must start fulltime

AMR Boulder
Good rep, apparently hard to get on as an external applicant.

AMR Pueblo/Canon City
Pueblo and Canon City, all of Pueblo county, parts of Fremont
P/B ambulances on mostly 12s, one 24 out of Pueblo West fire
Fremont County Ops might do 24s
Part time Fremont County must live in county

Chaffee County EMS
All of Chaffee County
2 P/B ambulances on 48s, one in Salida, one in Buena Vista
Hires PT

Eagle County Paramedic Services
All of Eagle County
4? ALS ambulances throughout county
Hires seasonally and PT

Summit County Ambulance
All of Summit County
4? ALS ambulances throughout (P/P or P/I)
Hires seasonally and PT, almost only medics
Not hiring

Clear Creek County EMS
All of CC County
2 P/B ambulances on 24s, one in Idaho Springs, one in Georgetown, office in Dumont
Hires PT medics and EMTs
Contact county HR for openings or facebook

Gilpin Ambulance Authority
Gilpin County area
3 P/B ambulances on 48s, 2 in Black Hawk, one in northern county
Hires PT medics and EMTs
Offers fire training but is single role

Craig Hospital
Craig and Moffat County area
2 ALS ambulances out of the hospital

Estes Park Hospital
2 ALS ambulances out of hospital, more during summer
Hires PT/Seasonal

Leadville Hospital
1 ALS ambulance on 24s, plus backup (call in crews)

Poudre Valley/ UCH Ambulance
Fort Collins/Larimer County area
P/B ambulances on mostly 12s
Hires EMTs for reserve spots then promotes
Hires medics straight on?
Good rep from EMTLife

Pagosa Springs EMS/ Upper San Juan Health Services District
Pagosa Springs area (west of Wolf Creek Pass/Hwy160)
2? P/B ambulances on 48s, both in Pagosa Springs?
Hires PT EMTs and Medics
Affiliated with hospital

Platte Valley Ambulance
Brighton area (NE Adams County)
4 P/B ambulances on 24s, Hospital based but has more than one station?
Excellent rep from all over
Director: Carl Craigle

Gunnison Valley Hospital EMS
Covers all of Gunnison County except Crested Butte
P/B Ambulances
Hires PT EMTs and Medics

Crested Butte FPD Ambulance
Crested Butte area
Hires non-fire medics to staff ambulance

Thompson Valley EMS
Loveland/Berthoud area and West
P/B 10 ambulances out of 5 stations on 24s or 12s?
Hires PT EMTs, need two years 911 experience
Hires PT medics
Hiring Contact: Marvi Delgener, HR

Aspen Ambulance District
Aspen and some of Pitkin County
3? ALS ambulances on 24s in fire stations
Season Staffing

Alamasoa Ambulance/ San Luis Valley Medical Center
Most/all of Alamosa County
2 P/B ambulances on 24s or 48s
Hospital Based

Good reputation, little info:
Delta County Ambulance, Trinidad Ambulance District

Nice areas but fire based ALS: Steamboat, Montrose, Glenwood Springs, Durango, Carbondale, Snowmass, Basalt Rural FPD (near Aspen)

Hope this helps.

Edited to remove contacts: PM if you need them.
 
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chaz90

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Ok, so I am going to jump in on this thread. I have my NREMT Basic and my CT state AEMT which allows me to start lines (IVs), and a bunch of other stuff. I am very seriously considering moving out to Boulder with a buddy of mine. I have been working private and volley EMS for the past year. Im in one of, if not the busiest division in the Northeast for the private company. And yes its mostly 911's at the tune of 12 to 16 in a 12 hour shift.


With all that being said will my CT AEMT cert transfer to CO? How is the pay in CO for basics? How hard is it secure a position? And the biggest one I am planning on furthering my skills and becoming a Medic. Are there schools within 30 to 45 minutes, where I can obtain my medic.

I have been searching for all these answers, albeit I haven't spent much time and haven't found much info regarding.
Man, everyone wants to know about Colorado lately.

1. CO basically takes NR reciprocity. You pay a fee, submit to a background check (I think federal database if moving from out of state), submit fingerprints, and wait a few weeks after paying the fee. It's incredibly simple.

2. Pay and job availability depends, like anywhere else, on what you're looking to do. Primary 911 with a livable wage and a good system as a new EMT is going to be extremely difficult to come across. In Boulder though, AMR does primary 911 and hires plenty of EMTs. Still not easy, and you may start out as wheelchair van, but it's doable. I don't know much about pay or working environment in the Boulder division.

3. Plenty of places to go to paramedic school in the Denver metro area, which is conveniently enough about 45 minutes from Boulder. Denver Health; St. Anthony's; HealthONE; Red Rocks Community College; Community College of Aurora; Front Range CC (I think); AIMS CC, and probably a few others I'm forgetting. Like everywhere else, some are notably better than others and I'd suggest you do your research.

Good luck with the move!
 

TransportJockey

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Man, everyone wants to know about Colorado lately.

1. CO basically takes NR reciprocity. You pay a fee, submit to a background check (I think federal database if moving from out of state), submit fingerprints, and wait a few weeks after paying the fee. It's incredibly simple.

2. Pay and job availability depends, like anywhere else, on what you're looking to do. Primary 911 with a livable wage and a good system as a new EMT is going to be extremely difficult to come across. In Boulder though, AMR does primary 911 and hires plenty of EMTs. Still not easy, and you may start out as wheelchair van, but it's doable. I don't know much about pay or working environment in the Boulder division.

3. Plenty of places to go to paramedic school in the Denver metro area, which is conveniently enough about 45 minutes from Boulder. Denver Health; St. Anthony's; HealthONE; Red Rocks Community College; Community College of Aurora; Front Range CC (I think); AIMS CC, and probably a few others I'm forgetting. Like everywhere else, some are notably better than others and I'd suggest you do your research.

Good luck with the move!
Has Colorado figured out what they're doing with intermediates since they used the I/99? It's nowhere comparable to the new AEMT... that's the only part of your post I'm wondering about now
 

chaz90

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Has Colorado figured out what they're doing with intermediates since they used the I/99? It's nowhere comparable to the new AEMT... that's the only part of your post I'm wondering about now
I didn't even see the OP mention I/99 or AEMT at first. Somehow I just read EMT-B and went with it. I never dealt with the Intermediate stuff personally or in any department I worked with, so it's all a mystery to me. Tigger may know more.
 

TransportJockey

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I didn't even see the OP mention I/99 or AEMT at first. Somehow I just read EMT-B and went with it. I never dealt with the Intermediate stuff personally or in any department I worked with, so it's all a mystery to me. Tigger may know more.
The op didn't ask. A guy a couple posts up did. I know what my I/85 got me at the time (basic cert) but dint know anymore
 

Tigger

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I didn't even see the OP mention I/99 or AEMT at first. Somehow I just read EMT-B and went with it. I never dealt with the Intermediate stuff personally or in any department I worked with, so it's all a mystery to me. Tigger may know more.
They are still recognizing them. Holding your NR is not a a condition of re-certification so you can maintain a state license as long as CE requirements are met.

There is talk of a bridge course which would be great, so long as they get rid of the EMT-I/god volunteers currently roaming rural areas providing poor treatment with little rationale.

My county does not recognize them, and we are not alone. You can act as one but you need to be working with a paramedic, meaning there is no reason for anyone to pay them any more money than EMTs.
 

Emergency Metaphysics

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Tigger and crew

First things first. You need your Colorado EMT, IV certification, and CO driver's license before anyone is going to read your application. I have never taken an EKG class and have worked at a few places. Same with PHTLS.

As to actual employment...
Tigger,

Thank you very much for the useful, well-thought replies to my questions. It's sincerely appreciated. I extend that thanks to the rest of the posters, too.

My guess is that I could get theses EKG and IV certifications in my home state and that they would transfer to Colorado, right? Or are these certifications that I should get in Colorado. Also, the driver's license: I would really need a Colorado driver's license? It seems like an unnecessary step given that if I can't find a job in Colorado why would I need to get a license there? Know what I mean?

Cheers,
M.
 
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