How hard is it to get a job on an ambulance as an EMT B?

John Trammell Jr

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I need to know if it will be hard. I live in Oklahoma and will i get overtime? And if me and my girlfriend move to an apartment with 400 a month for rent and she makes 16000 a year can we live okay with just the 2 of us?
 

luke_31

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I wouldn't count on overtime, it's never guaranteed and not a good way to rely on paying your bills. The only way to know if it's enough to pay your bills is to see what each of you get for net income. Then look at all your bills and see what you have left at the end. Ultimately when estimating your bills I'd add at least 15-20% to make sure you don't underestimate the bills.
 

hometownmedic5

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Generally, not hard at all. That statement assumes two things. One, the ambulance industry is alive and thriving in your area. This is true in the major metropolitan areas, but out in the country may not be accurate. Two, you’re willing to do IFT work. Some people think they are above transfers and dialysis. If thats you, then you could spend years waiting in the wings for a paying 911 job to fall out of the clear blue sky into your lap. If you’re willing to work to earn it(and the industry exists in your area), you should have no problem finding work. I’ll put it to you this way, in thirteen years on the job, I’ve never worked for or seen a private IFT company that wasn’t hiring. BLS IFT jobs(as previously qualified) are a dime a dozen.

Now, the important question, can you make a living. NO!!!!! BLS is not now, nor was it ever meant to be, a career you can support a family and be comfortable on. Yes, you might be able to scrape by, pay a bill or two, and survive; but survival isnt living. In most cases, a bls job is going to pay you subsistence wages, unless you’re still a basic in fifteen or twenty years. My company just raised wages across the board to be one of(if not the) highest paying companies in the area. First year basics are starting at 16/hr, which is damn good money for a basic, even in high cost Mass; but that’s not typical. I have no idea what Oregon wages are like, but in general, basics get paid crap. Chances are excellent that it will be years before you bring home a straight time paycheck that doesn’t make you cry a little. I very vividly remember the days when I would cash a weeks paycheck for <$300. That can be soul crushing after awhile.

People are remarkably resilient and hardy folk, sometimes. It sounds like if youre able to find work, you’re probably looking at a combined gross of about 35k/yr. Roughly 25/yr after taxes. 20 after rent comes out to a net cash flow of a little less than 400/wk from which you need clothes, food, utilities, transportation, incidentals and whatever other bills you have(credit, insurance, and so on). People for sure have lived on less, but you really need to be prepared for some austere condition at those numbers.

Never, ever, ever, ever, ever make overtime part of your calculations unless its built in, guaranteed overtime. I work 48hrs/week every week. I can bank on that eight hours as overtime, but I cant bank on any more than that. Betting your ability to maintain your lifestyle on unplanned overtime is a great path to bankruptcy...
 

KnightRider

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In Ohio, for a private service, its easy. I was hired on one AS I WAS FILLING OUT THE APP! They sent me for a background check, drug screen and physical the same day. I didnt take that job because the pay rate was all over the place and depended on your posting and if you worked 12 or 24 hour shifts. No thanks!

The service I work for assigns you to a "unit day" and gives me 48 hours/week with more OT if I want it. It didnt take much to get hired in there either.
 

Lo2w

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In Ohio, for a private service, its easy. I was hired on one AS I WAS FILLING OUT THE APP! They sent me for a background check, drug screen and physical the same day. I didnt take that job because the pay rate was all over the place and depended on your posting and if you worked 12 or 24 hour shifts. No thanks!

The service I work for assigns you to a "unit day" and gives me 48 hours/week with more OT if I want it. It didnt take much to get hired in there either.
Wonder if you're at my old IFT. North Central Ohio?
 

DrParasite

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To get a job? easy.

to get a good job? hard.
 
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John Trammell Jr

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In Ohio, for a private service, its easy. I was hired on one AS I WAS FILLING OUT THE APP! They sent me for a background check, drug screen and physical the same day. I didnt take that job because the pay rate was all over the place and depended on your posting and if you worked 12 or 24 hour shifts. No thanks!

The service I work for assigns you to a "unit day" and gives me 48 hours/week with more OT if I want it. It didnt take much to get hired in there either.
I wanna work for a public. Is private just transport?
 

Lo2w

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I wanna work 911 and will i get to have alot of OT?
Working 911 is going to be a combination of things. Must of us put in time doing the transfers and dialysis runs as EMTs prior to 911.

Keep an ear out in your area for public services that are expanding and adding trucks/crews. They may be more willing to hire a relatively new EMT. Like I'm just starting with Cleveland in Ohio and many of our EMTs and medics are straight out of school with no job experience because of their need to significantly increase trucks and manpower.
 

hometownmedic5

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You have to earn your spot on a city truck in most places.

OT is locally variable. Some places are awash in OT opportunities, some aren't.
 
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John Trammell Jr

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Working 911 is going to be a combination of things. Must of us put in time doing the transfers and dialysis runs as EMTs prior to 911.

Keep an ear out in your area for public services that are expanding and adding trucks/crews. They may be more willing to hire a relatively new EMT. Like I'm just starting with Cleveland in Ohio and many of our EMTs and medics are straight out of school with no job experience because of their need to significantly increase trucks and manpower.
So if I wasn’t working 911 what will i be doing? And what will the pay be?
 

DrParasite

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So if I wasn’t working 911 what will i be doing? And what will the pay be?
IFT means “interfacility transfer”. It’s usually the non 911 ambulance job. Dialysis, nursing homes, doctors appointments.
and pay in EMS sucks pretty much everywhere, especially for a newbie EMT working for a for-profit entity. But it is all company specific, so ask every company that you apply to what they will be paying you if you get hired.

In my history (which isn't in Ohio), I have worked for as low as $9 an hour starting to at high as 17.89 an hour. It all depends on what the agency wants to pay you, and there is only one way to find that out.... ASK THEM. I have heard of EMTs that work 24 hour shifts for minimum wage, so you want to know what your getting yourself into before you accept the job.

You keep saying you want lots of OT.... do you ever want to see your girlfriend? I like OT as much as the next guy, but at the end of the month, living at work gets old, never seeing your significant other gets old, not sleeping in your bed gets old, and OT is NEVER guaranteed. If you get OT, great, but what happens when the OT stops? the company is (under most circumstances) under no obligation to provide you with OT.

if you are relying on OT to make ends meet, you are going to guaranteed to get yourself in a financial jam when it no longer is offered.
 

Lo2w

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So if I wasn’t working 911 what will i be doing? And what will the pay be?
Depends on the market. In my area EMTs are 10-14 depending on the company.

As to what you'll do it depends on how your company runs. You could be on a BLS crew doing dialysis, doctor appointments or other transfers that require cot and medical attendant.

On an ALS truck you'd assist the medic and drive.
 
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John Trammell Jr

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and pay in EMS sucks pretty much everywhere, especially for a newbie EMT working for a for-profit entity. But it is all company specific, so ask every company that you apply to what they will be paying you if you get hired.

In my history (which isn't in Ohio), I have worked for as low as $9 an hour starting to at high as 17.89 an hour. It all depends on what the agency wants to pay you, and there is only one way to find that out.... ASK THEM. I have heard of EMTs that work 24 hour shifts for minimum wage, so you want to know what your getting yourself into before you accept the job.

You keep saying you want lots of OT.... do you ever want to see your girlfriend? I like OT as much as the next guy, but at the end of the month, living at work gets old, never seeing your significant other gets old, not sleeping in your bed gets old, and OT is NEVER guaranteed. If you get OT, great, but what happens when the OT stops? the company is (under most circumstances) under no obligation to provide you with OT.

if you are relying on OT to make ends meet, you are going to guaranteed to get yourself in a financial jam when it no longer is offered.
Ok so if i dont get OT then will i be able to make a decent living with her? Her salary will start out at 14-16k a year and obviously EMS doesn’t pay much. So together we might have 30k a year. Is that okay? To have food on the table, rentvand phone and internet?
 
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John Trammell Jr

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Depends on the market. In my area EMTs are 10-14 depending on the company.

As to what you'll do it depends on how your company runs. You could be on a BLS crew doing dialysis, doctor appointments or other transfers that require cot and medical attendant.

On an ALS truck you'd assist the medic and drive.
I wanna do ALS then. Can i choose?
 

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