Job Family: Health Care Practitioners Medical Emergency Technicians
Services Offering this Occupation
Army  | Navy  | Air Force  | National Guard

Supplemental Information
Profile  |  Career Path
Photo 1: Man escorts patient to surgery.
Photo 2:
Medical technician checks patient pulse.

Roger Buck
Occupation: Medical Service Technician

I always knew that I wanted to go into the medical profession. My mom’s been ill throughout my life, so I spent a lot of time in hospitals while I …

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Short Description
In emergencies or in combat, physicians are not always immediately available to treat the injured or wounded. When a physician is not available, medical emergency technicians provide basic and emergency medical treatment. They also assist medical officers in caring for sick and injured patients.


What They Do
Medical emergency technicians in the military perform some or all of the following duties:
  • Examine and treat emergency or battlefield patients
  • Interview patients and record their medical histories
  • Take patients’ temperature, pulse, and blood pressure
  • Prepare blood samples for laboratory analysis
  • Keep health records and clinical files up to date
  • Give shots and medicines to patients

Helpful Attributes
Helpful school subjects include chemistry, biology, psychology, general science, and algebra. Helpful attributes include:
  • Ability to communicate effectively
  • Ability to work under stressful conditions
  • Interest in helping others

Training Provided
Job training consists of classroom instruction, depending on specialty. Further training occurs on the job and through advanced courses. Course content typically includes:
  • Emergency medical treatment
  • Basic nursing care
  • Study of the human body
  • Minor surgical procedures
  • Clinical laboratory procedures
  • Methods for diagnosing diseases

Work Environment
Medical emergency technicians usually work in hospitals and clinics on land or aboard ships. Medical emergency technicians may give emergency medical treatment in the field.


Civilian Counterparts
Civilian medical emergency technicians work in hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, and rehabilitation centers. They perform duties similar to those performed by medical emergency technicians in the military. Civilian medical emergency technicians are known for the type of work they do: emergency medical technicians treat victims of accidents, fire, or heart attacks; medical assistants work for physicians and perform routine medical and clerical tasks; medication aides give shots and medicine under the close supervision of physicians; and physician assistants perform routine examinations and treatment for physicians.

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