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Mecklenburg EMS Agency Launches Innovative Program to Pay Future EMT's While They Train
Date:10/4/2007

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Oct. 4 /PRNewswire/ -- Already an operational, clinical and technological innovator in emergency medical services, Medic, the Mecklenburg EMS Agency, is again breaking new ground, this time in the way it hires the field personnel who deliver care to patients in and around Charlotte, N.C.

While the nation's emergency medical services agencies historically have hired EMT's and paramedics already trained in an academic setting, Medic is hiring promising local candidates who display the potential for excellence in EMS - even those with little or no medical training or background - and paying them while they go through an in-house 12-week EMT Academy.

"When we stepped back and thought about the characteristics that would make someone successful for the long term here," said Medic Executive Director Joe Penner, "three things came to mind: a commitment to this community, a passion for helping people, and an aptitude for excellence in the delivery of care. The first two are inherent to the individual, while the clinical skills are something we've proven we can teach effectively."

The proof of that effectiveness is evident. Through a partnership with the Center for Pre-hospital Medicine at the Carolinas College of Health Sciences, Medic has begun its fourth onsite academy for EMT's who already have completed academic programs; and is in its 11th year of conducting paid paramedic training for Medic EMT's who have proven themselves in the field. The pass rate on the state registry for graduates of Medic's programs is 100 percent, compared to 64 percent statewide. Medic's graduates also have passed the national registry 100 percent of the time, compared to 55 percent nationally.

"Our standards are extremely high, which is why we require all incoming EMT's and paramedics to complete our own rigorous training program, even if they are registered and have experience elsewhere," Penner said. "We firmly believe we can mirror that succe
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SOURCE Mecklenburg EMS Agency
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