Professional Requirements / Terminal Competecies

Paramedic Program Goals as Defined by CAAHEP/CoAEMSP

The paramedic program will “prepare competent entry-level Paramedics in the cognitive (knowledge), psychomotor (skills), and affective (behavior) learning domains,” with or without exit points at the Emergency Medical Responder, Emergency Medical Technician, and Advanced Intermediate levels.

WSU Paramedic Program - Professional Requirements

In order to be recommended for certification to the State of Utah Bureau of Emergency Medical Services or the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians, a graduate of the WSU program must meet these Emergency Medical Technician-Paramedic Professional Requirements (or "terminal objectives").

The EMT-P provides prehospital emergency care under medical command authority to acutely ill and/or injured patients and/or transports patients by ambulance or other appropriate emergency vehicle. The Paramedic shall demonstrate at 100 percent competency:

  • An awareness of abilities and limitations;
  • The ability to relate to people; and
  • The capacity to make rational patient-care decisions under stress.

To fulfill the role of the Paramedic, you must be able to demonstrate full competency in your abilities to:

  1. Recognize a medical emergency; assess the situation; manage emergency care and, if needed, extricate; coordinate efforts with those of other agencies that may be involved in the care and transportation of the patient; and establish rapport with the patient and significant others to decrease their state of anxiety.
  2. Assign priorities to emergency treatment data for the designated medical command
    authority, or assign priorities of emergency treatment.
  3. Record and communicate pertinent data to the designated medical command
  4. Initiate and continue emergency medical care under medical control, including the recognition of presenting conditions and initiation of appropriate treatments, including traumatic and medical emergencies, airway and ventilation problems, cardiac dysrhythmias, cardiac standstill, and psychological crises, and assess the response of the patient to that treatment, modifying medical therapy as directed.
  5. Exercise personal judgment and provide such emergency care as has been specifically authorized in advance, in cases where medical direction is interrupted by communication failure or in cases of immediate life threatening condition.
  6. Direct and coordinate the transport of the patient by selecting the best available method(s) in conjunction with medical command authority.
  7. Record, in writing or dictation, the details related to the patient's emergency care and the incident.
  8. Direct the maintenance and preparation of emergency care equipment and supplies.

"Description of the Profession" from the Committee on Accreditation of Educational Programs for EMS Professions 1989 Standards.

Specific WSU Paramedic Performance (Terminal) Objectives per NSC-99, ACLS/PALS 2010 and the 2010 National EMS Education Standards.

In order to receive an endorsement/recommendation to test and certify at the conclusion of the didactic, clinical and field internship portions of the paramedic program, AT A MINIMUM a basic entry level student will be expected to demonstrate at 90% competency (without assistance) the ability to:

  1. Perform basic life support according to the standards established by the American Heart Association maneuvers as necessitated by the situation
  2. Administer basic emergency skills including, but not limited to: splinting, bandaging, hemorrhage control, and cold application
  3. Establish a therapeutic patient relationship
  4. Communicate verbally and in writing, using fundamental medical terminology
  5. Obtain a history from a communicative patient including chief complaint, pertinent history of the present illness, past medical history, and mechanism of injury
  6. Conduct a comprehensive physical assessment (initial and detailed) on a minimum  of:
      - 30 pediatric patients (3 minimum in each category; newborn, infants, toddlers, preschool, school age, adolescent))
      - 50 adult patients
      - 30 geriatric patients

     AND include the following pathologies and complaints:
      - 10 obstetric patients
      - 30 trauma patients
      - 20 psychiatric patients
      - 30 chest pain patients
      - 20 adult respiratory distress patients
      -   8 pediatric patients in respiratory distress
      - 10 patients with syncope
      - 20 patients with abdominal complaints
      - 20 patients with altered mental status
  7. Properly record and report findings, including pertinent negatives
  8. Maintain sterile techniques in situations which require such activity
  9. Identify and select the correct intravenous solution from the drug box as ordered
  10. Competently initiate an IV infusion on a minimum of:
      - 25 patients in various age groups
  11. Calculate and regulate the flow rate for an IV infusion given the volume, drop factor, and time frame
  12. Re-establish an IV infusion that becomes compromised
  13. Remove air from IV tubing
  14. Discontinue an IV infusion
  15. Apply and inflate the MAST while evaluating the patient's response to the procedure
  16. Calculate the volume of medication to be administered when given an ordered dosage
  17. Read drug container labels, and identify components (i.e. name, concentration, expiration date, etc.)
  18. Withdraw solutions from ampoules and vials with an appropriate size syringe
  19. Assemble a preloaded syringe (e.g., Bristoject, Abbojet, preload cartridges, etc.)
  20. Correctly administer an IV push medication to a minimum of 15 patients in various age groups
  21. Administer IM injections: dorsogluteal, ventrogluteal, vastus lateralis, and deltoid sites to 5 patients (minimum) in various age groups
  22. Administer subcutaneous injections to 5 patients (minimum) in various age groups
  23. Calculate, mix, and administer an IV medication infusion using microdrip tubing
  24. Maintain the patient's airway and/or provide ventilations using the:
    a. Oropharyngeal airway   
    b. Nasopharyngeal airway  
    c. Pocket mask 
    d. Bag-valve-mask
    e. Positive pressure ventilator
    f.  Endotracheal tube
    g. Laryngeal mask assembly

    on a minimum number of patients to include:

     - 15 live patients for ET
     - 20 patients for all other airway adjuncts
  25. In step by step fashion, describe the generic procedure of rapid sequence intubation
  26. Perform the suctioning technique in the following situations:
    a. Oropharyngeal  
    b. Endotracheal
    c. Nasopharyngeal
    d. Tracheostomy
  27. Obtain an ECG:
     a. Equipment set-up
     b. ECG electrode application site
      (1) Standard limb leads
      (2) Modified chest leads
      (3) Standard 12 lead placement
     c. Utilize the Quick-look feature or "combo pad" type application
  28. State the area of myocardial infarct or ischemia based on a 12 lead EKG tracing 
  29. Select and administer the appropriate drug for an identified dysrhythmia according to local protocol and evaluate the patient's response to the therapy
    1. Recognize and provide proper treatment for the following dysrhythmias:
      a. Normal Sinus Rhythm  
      b. Sinus arrhythmia  
      c. Sinus arrest   
      d. Sinus bradycardia  
      e. Sinus tachycardia  
      f. Atrial tachycardia  
      g. PAC's    
      h. PJC's    
      i. PVC's     
      j. SVT/PSVT
      k. First degree block
      l. Second-degree, Type 1 (Wenckebach)
      m. Second-degree, Type 2
      n. Third-degree block
      o. Ventricular tachycardia and TDP
      p. Ventricular fibrillation
      q. Asystole
      r. AIVP
      s. Pulseless electrical activity (PEA)
      t. Pacemaker rhythm    
  30. Instruct the patient to accomplish the Valsalva maneuver
  31. Safely establish transcutaneous pacing, defibrillate or cardiovert as indicated
  32. Accomplish venipuncture using vacuum collection tubes
  33. Determine a blood sugar using a Dextrostix or equivalent chemical testing device
  34. Employ safety precautions while controlling and restraining a violent patient
  35. Intervene in a situation using fundamental crisis intervention techniques
  36. Objectively observe and report nonverbal behaviors
  37. Catheterize the urinary bladder of a male or female patient
  38. Perform nasogastric intubation
  39. Assign a neurological score utilizing the Glasgow coma scale
  40. Estimate percentage of burns using the Rule of Nines
  41. Monitor of the patient in labor and decide when birth is imminent
  42. Manage an uncomplicated delivery, including the resuscitation of the neonate
  43. Assess and assign an APGAR score for the neonate
  44. Apply primary injury prevention techniques at opportune moments
  45. Recognize basic terms utilized in EMS research
  46. State techniques that will preserve a crime scene
  47. Demonstrate the ability to triage in mass casualty events using both START and military triage 
  48. State the basic functions of incident command using the National Incident Management Systems (NIMS) terminology and and concepts.
  49. State the considerations and PPE needed for both HAZMAT and terrorism events
  50. Upon speaking to the lay public, be able to communicate basic concepts of wellness to include, nutrition, stress, alcohol, smoking and illegal drugs
  51. Demonstrate the ability to team lead in a variety of prehospital situations on a minimum of 50 ALS patients in various emergency responses  
  52. Possess the ability to perform patient transfer techniques commonly practiced pre-and intra-hospital
  53. Maintain the ability to perform all skills required of the EMT
  54. Maintain certification at the EMT level
  55. Demonstrate affective domain standards that include but are not limited to:
    a. integrity
    b. empathy
    c. self-motivation
    d. appearance-personal hygiene
    e. communications
    f. time management (punctuality)
    g. teamwork and diplomacy
    h. respect
    i. patient advocacy
    j. careful delivery of care
  56. In field internship a student must complete a minimum of 480 hours and sucessfully be team leader on 50 ALS calls.

Additional requirement:

In order to be recommended to test for the National Registry, the student must prove they have applied to the WSU Graduation Office for either the Institutional Certificate or AAS Degree. No student will be cleared to test until proof of that requirement has been met.

Certification Exam Disability Accommodation

WSU's Paramedic Program is dedicated to providing an outstanding education to all students and will diligently work with Disability Services in providing that education.  However, prospective students should recognize that testing for certification and licensure is done by the National Registry of EMT's. Should a student have any concerns about disability testing accommodations it is the student's responsibility to contact the Utah Bureau of EMS, or the National Registry, preferably prior to pursuing this course of study.  Information can be found at