In August 2011 the Iowa Department of Public Health Bureau of EMS, based on recommendations from the Iowa EMS Advisory Council, will begin transitioning the current levels of First Responder, EMT-Basic, EMT-Intermediate, EMT-Paramedic and Paramedic Specialist to the new levels of scope of practice. These new levels incorporate the nationally identified scope of practice levels of Emergency Medical Responder, Emergency Medical Technician, Advanced EMT and Paramedic

Iowa EMT-P Level to the Paramedic Level Transition Requirements

Individuals who currently hold a valid Iowa EMT-P certification may continue to complete the transition process to the Paramedic level certification through March 31, 2018.  The final period for Iowa EMT-Paramedics (EMT-P) to transition to the Paramedic level ends on March 31, 2018.

  • Iowa EMT-P providers must complete and submit the Iowa EMT-P to Paramedic Documentation form (available below) to the Bureau of Emergency and Trauma Services (BETS) prior to the first attempt of the cognitive examination.
    • The EMT-P transition candidate may complete the listed training requirements through initial training, continuing education, on the job training or other educational process.
    • Candidates need only to submit page 1 & 2 of the document to the Bureau.
  • After submission of the completed Iowa EMT-P to Paramedic Document to the Bureau the candidate will need to complete the application process for the paramedic cognitive examination on the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians’ (NREMT) website (https://www.nremt.org/rwd/public/)
  • Practical examination is not required for the transition from the Iowa EMT-P to paramedic level.
  • Once the NREMT application has been successfully completed by the candidate the Bureau will be notified by the NREMT.  The Bureau will review the candidate’s application and if valid will approve the candidate to take the examination (this step is only required for the candidate’s first attempt).
  • The Bureau will pay for the first attempt of the transition examination only.  All other attempts will be the responsibility of the candidate. 
  • Once the approval process has been completed the candidate will receive an Authorization to Test letter from the NREMT.
  • Once the candidate has received their Authorization to Test letter they can contact a Person Examination site and schedule their cognitive examination.
  • Iowa (ONLY) EMT-P transition candidates may attempt the cognitive examination an unlimited number of times before April 1, 2018 – there is no requirement for remedial training between attempts.
  • Once the cognitive exam has been successfully completed based on the conditions above the candidate will be issued an Iowa Paramedic certification.
  • On April 1, 2018, any individual holding a valid Iowa EMT-P certification who has not successfully completed the transition process will automatically be moved to the AEMT level. 
  • Iowa EMT-P providers may also choose to transition to the EMR, EMT or AEMT level at any time by submitting a Change of Iowa EMS Status Application (available at: http://idph.iowa.gov/bets/ems/certification). 
    • The new level will become effective when the Bureau of Emergency and Trauma Services receives and processes the application. 
    • Providers who transition to the EMR, EMT or AEMT level prior to renewing will only need to meet the renewal requirements and certification fee, if applicable, of the new level.

Note: Individuals who wish to obtain or maintain a NREMT certification may need to meet additional requirements.  Please contact the NREMT for any additional information.