North Carolina EMT and CPR card

akflightmedic

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I googled some and could not verify or debunk this scenario...

However, yesterday I had the pleasure of watching an EMT from NC proceeding through onboarding for a crisis response job. Her CPR card was expired, however she was very loud and insistent that she did not need a current CPR card to deploy because "In NC we do not need one. By being an EMT it is implied and assumed we know CPR". She loudly repeated this multiple times with slight word changes.

So is this true? In NC, you do not need your add on certs? Is it just assumed you know what you are doing since you have the EMT card?? :) LOL

It took everything I had to not throw the BS flag, however the processor stood firm, turned her around out the door after telling her where she could very quickly obtain a new card onsite, but it would cost.
 
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planetmike

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It's possible you don't need a CPR card to practice, but I'd think that is a state by state requirement. In Virginia, you need to have a valid CPR card on day 1 of your initial certification class (EMR or EMT), AND a valid CPR card on the day you take your written test. Once certified, it's whatever your agency or employer requires.

That said, it's not a difficult class. And why would you fight someone who might be offering you a job? Get and maintain CPR? Why would you not do that?
 

DrParasite

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So is this true? In NC, you do not need your add on certs? Is it just assumed you know what you are doing since you have the EMT card?? :) LOL
she's correct, in NC, you don't need a valid CPR card to be an EMT, nor do you need one to work on the ambulance. Many counties in NC (including the system that I operate in) feel that CPR is just another merit badge class, a money grab by the AHA, and not worth it. That doesn't mean that there are no CPR standards, or that you aren't checked on being able to perform CPR; those are required annually, but the AHA cost isn't worth it. Similarly, the county I live in doesn't care about ACLS, PALS, PHTLS, or anything else; that isn't to say they don't follow their standards (they do, unless our medical director wants to do something differently), but it isn't worth it to pay AHA for every employee.

I think a better way to say it is every EMT needs to have verification that they can perform CPR using the latest and greatest standards, usually every 2 years. if an EMS agency does this all internally and has records showing such, then a CPR card isn't needed; however, if you don't then it's much easier to have a CPR card that verifies CPR competency. Also, I have heard that certain NC EMT's don't need an AHA CPR card to recert, especially if the research the AHA is using to update standards comes from said NC EMS county... but that's just a rumor.

Now, if her crisis management job requires a CPR card, then guess what: she needs a CPR card.
 

DrParasite

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for the record, my CPR card is currently expired; the only reason I kept it up was to maintain my CPR instructor. since I let my instructor lapse a few years (because it became a huge pain to transfer to a new training center), I haven't bothered to renew my provider card (but 6 months ago I did renew my NREMT through my agency, so take that for what it's worth)

Just for some official documentation, here are the requirements to renew an EMT cert in NC:

and here are the paramedic renewal guidelines:

you'll note, there are no add-on certs required to maintain a credential.

I would also point you to the OEMS handhook: https://info.ncdhhs.gov/dhsr/EMS/pdf/cred/NCOEMS-CandidateHandbook.pdf

no mention of CPR at all.

however, I think her statement of "By being an EMT it is implied and assumed we know CPR" is not correct. Just because you are an EMT doesn't mean you know CPR, nor is there any implication that you are CPR certified; it's up to her employer to verify (and document) that she is maintaining competency, using whatever method they feel is appropriate (internal evaluations, external 3rd party exams and add on certs, etc).
 
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MackTheKnife

BSN, RN-BC, EMT-P, TCRN, CEN
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I googled some and could not verify or debunk this scenario...

However, yesterday I had the pleasure of watching an EMT from NC proceeding through onboarding for a crisis response job. Her CPR card was expired, however she was very loud and insistent that she did not need a current CPR card to deploy because "In NC we do not need one. By being an EMT it is implied and assumed we know CPR". She loudly repeated this multiple times with slight word changes.

So is this true? In NC, you do not need your add on certs? Is it just assumed you know what you are doing since you have the EMT card?? :) LOL

It took everything I had to not throw the BS flag, however the processor stood firm, turned her around out the door after telling her where she could very quickly obtain a new card onsite, but it would cost.
For what it's worth, in crisis response, current credentials are not always necessary. I think we all remember the clarion call for retired doctors, nurses, medics to come back to work when COVID first hit.
 
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akflightmedic

akflightmedic

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Thanks DrP....as I said, I did not know, but it just sounded so BS!
 

Carlos Danger

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But there isn’t that requirement.
As Dr. Parasite explained, the agency that you work for or the county sets that requirement as part of their CEU or competency program, just like they require regular review and testing on all the other skills. The same can be done with ACLS; it is just a set of recommendations that can be incorporated into county or agency protocols and tested annually along with the other protocols.
 

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