The Philadelphia Fire Department is congratulating its first class of Advanced EMTs, whose recent training now enables them to provide more skilled emergency medical care. 

Eleven PFD emergency medical technicians (EMTs) finished a four-month program that taught them more advanced procedures. After passing a national certification test, they were officially promoted this week to the PFD’s new rank of Advanced EMT.  

“These members have raised the already high level of dedicated service and compassionate care that we provide 24x7x365,” said Fire Commissioner Adam K. Thiel.

When people call 911 to request emergency medical services (EMS), the PFD can send different types of providers based on the severity of the incident. EMTs can provide basic life support protocols such as CPR and bleeding control. Paramedics can perform advanced life support techniques, including intubating patients. 

Advanced EMTs have an intermediate skill level and can do things like start IVs, administer breathing treatments for asthma patients, and give epinephrine for allergic reactions.  

The PFD partnered with Tower Health at Chestnut Hill Hospital to provide the Advanced EMT course. It included classroom learning, ambulance ridealongs and hospital rotations. 

“I’m so proud of these EMS providers for taking the initiative to improve their skills,” said Deputy Commissioner for EMS Crystal Yates. “I can’t wait for the next Advanced EMT class to start in August.” 

This training program is one of several PFD initiatives designed to advance members’ skills amid a shortage of paramedics and a huge demand for EMS. The PFD responds to an average of more than 730 EMS incidents every day. 

The program also supports Mayor Kenney’s workforce development goals by expanding opportunities and building career pathways for PFD members, most of whom are City residents.