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  1. #1
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    Default Hard to finding medics

    I am in South Carolina and I was just wondering if any other agencys in this state have a hard time finding Paramedics. I am talking paramedics to just apply for the job. We had five openings at least and not one paramedic applied. I think we are feeling the crunch of the "none existant" shortage of paramedics.
    I was just wondering if it was a local thing or is it all over.. I am in the Lowcountry area

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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by rumedic1
    I am in South Carolina and I was just wondering if any other agencys in this state have a hard time finding Paramedics. I am talking paramedics to just apply for the job. We had five openings at least and not one paramedic applied. I think we are feeling the crunch of the "none existant" shortage of paramedics.
    I was just wondering if it was a local thing or is it all over.. I am in the Lowcountry area
    Are you guys a fire department or just EMS?

    I am looking for a full time fire job....I HAVE MY MEDIC, FFII !

    Email me if you have any info!

    zach
    immodice@aol.com

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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by rumedic1
    I am in South Carolina and I was just wondering if any other agencys in this state have a hard time finding Paramedics. I am talking paramedics to just apply for the job. We had five openings at least and not one paramedic applied. I think we are feeling the crunch of the "none existant" shortage of paramedics.
    I was just wondering if it was a local thing or is it all over.. I am in the Lowcountry area
    hmmm, are other agencies in yoru area feeling the same crunch? most paramedics are going to other fields for various reasons. medics get paid poorly, deal with a lot of stress, work long hours, often crammed in ambulances during their entire shift, and are forced to run call after call after call with little down time. Also, most current paramedics work as a medic in more that one location (full time at place A, part-time or per-diem at place B) just to make ends meet.

    I know there are many senior medics leaving the private sector for jobs as career firefighter/paramedics, or jobs with non-profit semi-municpal ambulance companies because they know they can make more money with less stress. how do your salaries compare to your neighbors? what is the work enviorment like? while your salary (40 hour work week) might enough for a single male, but what about when he gets married and has kids? will that be enough to support a family?

    people in EMS shouldn't be saying that there is a paramedic shortage, but rather why are we having trouble finding medics, and what can we do to rectify the situation.
    If my basic HazMat training has taught me nothing else, it's that if you see a glowing green monkey running away from something, follow that monkey!

    FF/EMT/DBP

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    Default

    Money is important, Dont get me wrong. But also consider staff develpoment. Not just basic CE, but sending your people to CCEMT-P, conferences, ABLS, etc.

    Do your standing orders go beyond the basic VOMIT medicine? DO you have standing orders for pain control so your medics dont have to BEG the OLMC for meds to make a little old lady feel better?
    DO you have CPAP? Is your MD involved, or a dictator, or just a name on the liscense and recert paperwork?

    In other words...do your medics feel like medics, or the bastard step child of the fire service and the health care commuity both? Remember (most) medics want to be MEDICS, treated like adults and challanged to excell.

    TO take an example...KCM1 system pays very well...but when you consider the area (seattle) its not awsome. Its good, but not the same as it would be somewhere else. This is an assumption, but the medics there dont stay for the money...They stay for the medicine and the pride of the job they do. A level of medicine and staff development most other places dont even try to come close to.
    Last edited by croaker260; 03-17-2006 at 09:35 AM.
    Steve

    Paramedic, CCEMT-P, Geek

    "Boldness is like a condom. If you depend on it all the time, no matter how good it is, and no matter how good you are, eventually it will break. "

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    Default

    I am in the same state as rumedic1 and we are having the same problem. We currently have 17 openings. At all of our assesment centers, we only have 5 people show up and 3 might be part time and two are either intermediates or a medic. I think we have a great system with progressive equipment and standing orders but it is hard to compete with a private service who offers bonuses and incentive pay.
    Last edited by jtkmedic69; 03-17-2006 at 10:31 PM.
    JTKMEDIC

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    I here that jtkmedic now has 19 openings in my area 6 to 8 openings and now I here the state of Georgia is in the same boat. At least the services along the coast are in short supply
    Last edited by rumedic1; 05-09-2006 at 12:44 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DrParasite
    hmmm, are other agencies in yoru area feeling the same crunch?
    Yes they are the private and government bothe fire and EMS.

    Quote Originally Posted by DrParasite
    most paramedics are going to other fields for various reasons. medics get paid poorly, deal with a lot of stress, work long hours, often crammed in ambulances during their entire shift, and are forced to run call after call after call with little down time.
    some medics are going in to nursing other than that they are just moving around taking advantage of the open job market and bouncing from job to job for the etra few cents each has to offer.

    Quote Originally Posted by DrParasite
    Also, most current paramedics work as a medic in more that one location (full time at place A, part-time or per-diem at place B) just to make ends meet.
    yes some do work more than one job but that is not consistant with those leaving.

    Quote Originally Posted by DrParasite
    I know there are many senior medics leaving the private sector for jobs as career firefighter/paramedics, or jobs with non-profit semi-municpal ambulance companies because they know they can make more money with less stress. how do your salaries compare to your neighbors? what is the work enviorment like?
    We are county based third service no fire. We have it made 600-800 call a month 24/48 rotation fire first responds on all calls they assist they will carry stretcher get it out the truck for you we have NO non emergent transfers a private handles all home to dr or dialysis ect..

    The private sector pay is more but none have left to go private actually we have hire personnel from them that take a cut in pay to work here

    Salaries are very close we have one issue in longetivy but this will hope fully be resolved in July this is one reason we have retenttion problem.

    work ever. is very easy compared to other agencys, you can sleep after 1300, new ambulances, lp 12 loaded allbells and whistles, cpap, adult IO ezio, vents on units, body armour, all uniforms provided when you start we provide everything except underware and socks no joke..


    Quote Originally Posted by DrParasite
    while your salary (40 hour work week) might enough for a single male, but what about when he gets married and has kids? will that be enough to support a family?
    medic is 35000-36000 yr BASE

    Quote Originally Posted by DrParasite
    people in EMS shouldn't be saying that there is a paramedic shortage, but rather why are we having trouble finding medics, and what can we do to rectify the situation.
    This is true but in our area there is a shortage not enough going to classes this is in both the state of Georgia and South Carolina I work in both I can speak for the coastal regions of both

  8. #8
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    Default Interested

    I am have always been interested in being a medic, can someone please help me with information on how to get myself started?

    Thanks
    Amanda

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    Quote Originally Posted by missmekissme
    I am have always been interested in being a medic, can someone please help me with information on how to get myself started?

    Thanks
    Amanda
    we need to know what state you are in is first thing

  10. #10
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    I live in northern Virginia

  11. #11
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    I hoped someone from VA would jump in this is the best I can do good luck..
    EMT Basic info

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    Unhappy

    I work in Orlando currently and as far as I know in Florida, the medic shortage is pretty bad. Most of the counties in Florida are pretty much all Fire/EMT/Medic certified and compete for employees in wages, benefits etc. So what ends up happening is everytime the new Union contract for a fire dept gets negotiated, the money goes up and people leave mulitple vacancies at other places causing a shortage.

    There are also some county run EMS systems here that run with BLS fire depts and they are now competing and causing the private agencies to crumble. For example, Polk County EMS just raised their starting wage from 32K to 38K and had 15 vacancies which were all filled in a matter of weeks.

    Now I live in Orlando where I must say we have just about the most screwed up EMS system I have ever worked under which is why I am leaving angoing to Sarasota soon. Rural Metro currently runs the East Orange County area and all of the city of Orlando for 911 transports. Well I work PT there and they have approx 30 medic slots the last time I checked. Its so bad that they are losing the Non-emergency contract with Orlando Regional Healthcare which is about to crack Rural Metro and send them packing which is why AMR is now bidding to take over soon.

    Its a huge ripple effect. Lets face it, salaries and benefits are the key to keeping medics and keeping them happy. Same goes for EMTs. Also having a Medical Director who is all in favor of what is in the best interest of the patient and not liabilities and by trusting his/her medics to do what they went to school for is the key to having a great EMS system as a whole nationwide.

    I am just absolutely appalled by the type of money nurses make in comparison to what medics make. I not by any means a nurse hater, hell im dating one, but lets face it, who is required to make critical thinking decisions on a constant basis which really makes the decision of life and death for a patient? Paramedics with the assistance of course of EMTs. Both of our professions RN and Paramedics have a nationwide shortage, so for us to get paid significantly less is absurd. So until we all get significant pay scale increases that allow for a confortable life style for most, the shortage will only get worse. Its sad because I love my job and I wouldnt trade it for anything. I just wish we could see some positive changes in the field.

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    i gotta get the hell outta WI!!!! Im a medic for a private service...$10.56 an hr to start. I also work in an ED, that pays better, $19.90 per hr (RN starts at $36 per hr though)
    Even the municipal FD (Green Bay, WI) only gets a $5000 per yr bump if your a medic. I guess thats why we work 100 hrs a week!
    Mark Carlson


    firefighter's find 'em hot and leave 'em wet!

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    Same problems in NY.

    The issue, when it comes down to it, is how much money you make and what your costs of living are. When EMS agencies, both public and private, nickel and dime their medics forcing them to live at a payrate almost a quarter of what any numbnut nurse makes, you're going to have medics jumping from agency to agency trying to make ends meet while working 60 to 100 hour weeks.

    In this area, the two large private agencies are having problems hiring and retaining paramedics. First off, they make no efforts to promote a positive work environment. Profit is king. Payrates are also held down by a very ineffective EMS union upon which the entire region bases their payscales on.

    Unless pay starts to match that of other medical providers (i.e. - nurses that can't even administer a medication much less change a set of bedsheets without an order from a doc), there's always going to be a shortage of good paramedics. When a seasoned flight medic only makes half of what the average floor nurse makes, you're going to find a lot of paramedics leaving paramedicine to enter more lucrative fields.

    To see a good way of recruiting good paramedics, take a look at the fire side. I know this is a fairly sore subject but you have to admit our collegues that ride big red trucks have a way of negotiating salaries, and more importantly benefits, that you can actually live on while only working 40 to 48 hours a week. Imagine that!

    Reader's Digest version:
    - raise pay
    - better benefits
    - better working conditions
    - offer a career, not just a job

    Be safe out there.

    DISCLAIMER: Yes, I am bitter that nurses make the kind of money they make. Yes, I take a whole lot of grief from nurses everyday at work. Yes, I think paramedics should make at least what a mere RN makes.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by NYCCEMTP
    Same problems in NY.

    The issue, when it comes down to it, is how much money you make and what your costs of living are. When EMS agencies, both public and private, nickel and dime their medics forcing them to live at a payrate almost a quarter of what any numbnut nurse makes, you're going to have medics jumping from agency to agency trying to make ends meet while working 60 to 100 hour weeks.

    In this area, the two large private agencies are having problems hiring and retaining paramedics. First off, they make no efforts to promote a positive work environment. Profit is king. Payrates are also held down by a very ineffective EMS union upon which the entire region bases their payscales on.

    Unless pay starts to match that of other medical providers (i.e. - nurses that can't even administer a medication much less change a set of bedsheets without an order from a doc), there's always going to be a shortage of good paramedics. When a seasoned flight medic only makes half of what the average floor nurse makes, you're going to find a lot of paramedics leaving paramedicine to enter more lucrative fields.

    To see a good way of recruiting good paramedics, take a look at the fire side. I know this is a fairly sore subject but you have to admit our collegues that ride big red trucks have a way of negotiating salaries, and more importantly benefits, that you can actually live on while only working 40 to 48 hours a week. Imagine that!

    Reader's Digest version:
    - raise pay
    - better benefits
    - better working conditions
    - offer a career, not just a job

    Be safe out there.

    DISCLAIMER: Yes, I am bitter that nurses make the kind of money they make. Yes, I take a whole lot of grief from nurses everyday at work. Yes, I think paramedics should make at least what a mere RN makes.
    NYCCEMTP,

    for once you and I are in agreement.
    Steve

    Paramedic, CCEMT-P, Geek

    "Boldness is like a condom. If you depend on it all the time, no matter how good it is, and no matter how good you are, eventually it will break. "

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    If you want medics to make wages comparable to RN's, then we have to stop fighting amongst ourselves and work toward the level of professional recognition that nurses have attained.

    As long as we are trained, willing to volunteer, complain about the number of hours it takes to become educated, etc, we will never be compensated for the effort.

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    I also live in SC like rumedic1 only in the Upstate. Looks like we have about the same equipment. Our service is pretty agressive as far as SO's and SOP's. We also have a career ladder that if a person stays and works at it can make great money. All that said we still have a medic shortage mainly for reasons that others have noted.

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    Media here in Louisiana has been running stories on the medic shortage for quite some time. Private service Acadian Ambulance is short about 60 positions. East Baton Rouge EMS is so short they have begun paying students an hourly wage when they are going through medic class. It was bad before Katrina but it's really bad now.
    Steve
    EMT/Security Officer

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    What could I make if I came to Arcadian in LA?

    Matt
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    Default Being a medic in Va

    missmekissme

    The way you have to become a medic in Virginia is find and accredited program in the local college and you can go and obtain your medic. The only medic programs have to be accredited or approved by the State office of EMS. They usually are in a college setting. Ofcoarse the prereqs is going to be the EMT basic class then you can get into the medic program from there. I live and work in Bedford County and we are a volunteer department that contract a third service to assist our volunteer departments during the day. We have looked into and want to explore other options because having a contract service coming in to work with the volunteers has some very unique challenges. Good luck on becomeing a medic and when you get it call me and we will have room for any medics.

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    You know, this thread is kind of funny. Let me tell you my problem.

    There is "such a shortage on medics" here in Tennessee...then why can't I get a PT job as a medic?

    Explain that one to me.

    Matt
    NREMT-P

  22. #22
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    Default I don't live there but,

    It is probably because they want to have full time people so they don't have to split up shifts. For the most part where I wor they want people that work as needed instaed of p/t. That way tou can sign up for a full shift instead of cutting one up.

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    Well..you would think that a PT medic would be better than no medic or paying a FT medic time and a half.

    Matt

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    Default You like me

    You like me are probably just a small player in this big EMS game. I am sure that it all makes sense to the people in charge. I am under the impression that when you start in upper level managment you lose the majority of your common sense.

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    There is a problem finding medics with good work ethic. I have seen a few medics that have applied for jobs that will probably never get hired because of the way they present themselves and the way they act. Just because you are a certified medic doesn't mean you are a shoe in for a job. It means you have the ability to use you being a medic to your advantage when applying for a job.
    You can have all the certifications in the world but if you are " a turd in a punch bowl" you will never get hired in the public service world. If you do get hired they made a bad mistake.

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