Thinking about a career change and I’m interested in the medical field. I keep getting mixed review about how much paramedics make so I am trying to get an answer from someone who is or was in the field.
- JasonLv 75 months ago
It varies regionally and by whether you work for a private company or municipal ambulance service, but runs around $13-$25 an hour. I have long said that making a living in the back of an ambulance is a lot like making a living as a musician -- you can do it. A lot of people do it. But it's not the dream job on TV.
It is long, hard hours for not great pay. You can make living at it but not a luxurious one. We still operate in a for-profit health care system and transport is poorly reimbursed by medicare and private insurance. It costs a lot of money to keep an ambulance stocked, fueled, maintained, and on the road -- much less pay the folks in it. When the pile of money is only so big you can only spread it around so much. And like all for-profit industries, they spread it from the top down and don't do so equally.
Another factor is that EMS as a profession does not value education the way nursing does. I remember when the first accredited paramedic AAS degree was developed. Before that, it was just a certificate. There is no such thing as a master's in paramedicine. Nurses with a BSN get paid more than nurses with a two-year degree. Nurses with a master's get paid a lot more. Paramedics don't have the same avenues for advancement. So there is a ceiling to the pay scale.
It's a rewarding job and with time and experience, there are some excellent jobs available. But like all things you have to work your way up, doing so is hard, and there are more folks who want those choice gigs than there are slots available. Whether those sacrifices are worth it you, is up to you.
Best wishes.Source(s): Former paramedic and USAF flight medic Respiratory therapist (B.S., RRT, RPFT) Working on my masters in nursing
- TavyLv 75 months ago
Mixed reviews ? surely it tells you on the Paramedic training site.