How to become a paramedic: Tanoh's story

Meet Tanoh, 28, and find out about his life as a paramedic in the NHS. Part of our Bitesize world of work series.

By far the best part of the job is knowing that every day at work I can make a difference to someone.

  • In Tanoh's job, he responds to emergency 999 calls
  • Because paramedics are often the first people to reach someone in need of medical help, they are trained to give life-saving treatment
  • Paramedics work in shifts of 12 hours with a partner, so they need to have excellent teamwork skills
  • Tanoh is also responsible for checking the equipment and supplies in an ambulance ahead of his shifts and driving to patients in need of his help.

What to expect if you want to be a paramedic

  • Paramedic salary: £23,023 to £36,644 per year
  • Paramedic working hours: 36 to 38 hours per week (including evenings and weekends)

What qualifications do you need to be a paramedic?

  • Typical entry requirements: You can become a paramedic through a university course or by working towards the role as a student paramedic, a trainee technician or an emergency care assistant for an ambulance service. A university paramedic qualification is a practical qualification which combines study with on-the-job experience. University courses must be approved by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and will require two or three A-levels (or equivalent). The College of Paramedics has more details about becoming a paramedic.

This information is a guide (source: LMI for All, National Careers Service)

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