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EMT Certification/Renewal & Paramedic Accreditation

General information

Initial EMT Certificate

*Beginning 4/1/2021 applicants must apply through the online application process*

You should review the Agency’s policy PER 1 - EMT Certification on EMT certificate and EMT certificate renewals before proceeding with your application.

**Prior to completing any of the steps below, please go to the San Mateo County EMS online certification system and verify your account. If you do not have an account on the system, create one prior to proceeding. Failure to do so prior to initiating the application process may result in substantial delays in processing your application**

Eligibility Requirements

The following requirements apply to all applicants who have never been certified through San Mateo County as an EMT, or whose EMT certificate has been expired for more than 24 months:

  1. Be eighteen (18) years of age or older.
  2. Provide a current government-issued photo ID (e.g., state driver’s license, state ID card, military ID card, passport).
  3. Meet one of the following eligibility criteria:
    • Possess a current and valid National Registry EMT, Advanced EMT, or Paramedic registration certificate; or,
    • Possess a current and valid out-of-state Advanced EMT or Paramedic certificate; or,
    • Possess a current and valid California Advanced EMT certificate or a current and valid California Paramedic license.
  4. Not be precluded from certification for reasons defined in Section 1798.200(c)(1) through (c)(12) of the Health and Safety Code.

Online Application

Once these requirements are met, complete the EMT – Initial Certification online application and pay the established non-refundable fee.

Live Scan Information

Once your application is submitted, complete a Department of Justice Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI) background check. Information and documentation on obtaining a Live Scan will be sent to you once your online application is submitted. 

Do not complete a Live Scan until you have submitted your online application for an initial EMT certificate. Live Scan results submitted to the Agency before an application is on file are not retained by the Agency. If you complete a Live Scan before submitting your application you may be required to complete a new Live Scan and pay the required fees.

The Agency does not release information contained in the Live Scan background report. For information on obtaining a copy of your Live Scan background results, or for information on the status of your Live Scan, contact the California Department of Justice by visiting https://applicantstatus.doj.ca.gov/

Issuance of California EMT Certificate

An application for an initial EMT certificate may take up to 30 days to process from the time the application is complete. Applications that disclose any criminal history or administrative actions against a healthcare license may take up to 60 days to process. Information regarding the status of your application may be found by visiting the online portal.

California EMT Certificate valid Statewide

A California EMT certificate issued by San Mateo County or any other certifying entity is valid statewide. You are not required to obtain a California EMT certificate from San Mateo County EMS to work as an EMT in San Mateo County.

EMT Certificate Renewal

* Beginning 4/1/2021 applicants must apply through the online application process*

You should review the Agency’s policy PER 1 - EMT Certification on EMT certificate and EMT certificate renewals before proceeding with your application.

**Prior to completing any of the steps below, please go to the San Mateo County EMS online certification system and verify your account. If you do not have an account on the system, create one prior to proceeding. Failure to do so prior to initiating the application process may result in substantial delays in processing your application**

Eligibility Requirements

***PER THE GOVERNOR’S 8/16/2021 EXECUTIVE ORDER (N-12-21) AND CA EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES AUTHORITY UPDATED GUIDANCE (8/25/2021), CURRENTLY, A SKILLS COMPETENCY VERIFICATION FORM IS NOT REQUIRED FOR RENEWAL OR REINSTATEMENT OF AN EMT CERTIFICATE***

To maintain certification, all candidates must:

  1. Possess a valid and current California EMT certificate.
  2. Complete a minimum of twenty-four (24) hours of approved prehospital continuing education within the two (2) year certification period.
  3. Pay the appropriate fee.

Once these requirements are met:

  • Applicants whose current EMT certificate was issued by San Mateo County EMS must complete the EMT – Recertification (Current or expired less than 12 months) online application.
  • Applicants whose current EMT certification was not issued by San Mateo County EMS must complete the EMT – Recertification (New to San Mateo County) online application.

In order to complete the application, copies of the following documents will need to be uploaded into the system:

  • Current government-issued photo ID (e.g., state drivers license, state ID card, military ID card, passport)
  • If applicable, court records and/or police reports as requested during the application process (these records must be attached to each application submitted, whether the EMS Agency has received them previously or not)

Online applications will not be accepted until all the required documentation has been uploaded.

Once the online application has been submitted and the EMS Agency has confirmed that the applicant meets all the criteria specified in Title 22, Division 9, Chapter 2, Article 5 of the California Health and Safety Code, an individual shall be recertified as an Emergency Medical Technician. This certification is valid throughout the State of California.

If the recertification requirements were met within six (6) months prior to the expiration date, the effective date of the certification shall be the expiration date of the current certification.

Certification cards will be mailed to applicants following verification of documentation submitted with the application.

Expired EMT Certificate

*Beginning 4/1/2021 applicants must apply through the online application process*

You should review the Agency’s policy PER 1 - EMT Certification on EMT certificate and EMT certificate renewals before proceeding with your application.

**Prior to completing any of the steps below, please go to the San Mateo County EMS online certification system and verify your account. If you do not have an account on the system, create one prior to proceeding. Failure to do so prior to initiating the application process may result in substantial delays in processing your application**

Eligibility Requirements

Requirements for recertification of a lapsed EMT certificate depend on the period of time the certificate has lapsed. Select the appropriate option below, based on the amount of time that the certification has lapsed:

For a lapse of less than six (6) months:

Follow the instructions on the “EMT Certificate Renewal” tab

For a lapse of six (6) months or more, but less than twelve (12) months:

***PER THE GOVERNOR’S 8/16/2021 EXECUTIVE ORDER (N-12-21) AND CA EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES AUTHORITY UPDATED GUIDANCE (8/25/2021), CURRENTLY A SKILLS COMPETENCY VERIFICATION FORM IS NOT REQUIRED FOR RENEWAL OR REINSTATEMENT OF AN EMT CERTIFICATE***

  1. Complete a minimum of thirty-six (36) hours of approved prehospital continuing education within the prior two (2) year period.

Once these requirements are met:

  • Applicants whose current EMT certificate was issued by San Mateo County EMS must complete the EMT – Recertification (Current or expired less than 12 months) online application.
  • Applicants whose current EMT certification was not issued by San Mateo County EMS must complete the EMT – Recertification (New to San Mateo County) online application.

In order to complete the online application, copies of the following documents will need to be uploaded into the system: 

  • Current government-issued photo ID (e.g., state drivers license, state ID card, military ID card, passport)
  • If applicable, court records and/or police reports as requested during the application process (these records must be attached to each application submitted, whether the EMS Agency has received them previously or not)

Upon completion of the appropriate requirements listed above, and confirmation that the applicant meets all the criteria specified in Title 22, Division 9, Chapter 2, Article 5 of the California Health and Safety Code, an individual shall be recertified as an Emergency Medical Technician. This certification is valid throughout the State of California. 

Certification cards will be mailed to applicants following verification of documentation submitted with the application.

For a lapse of twelve (12) months or more, but less than twenty-four (24) months:

  1. Possess a California EMT certificate that is expired for more than twelve (12) months, but less than twenty-four (24) months.
  2. Complete a minimum of forty-eight (48) hours of approved prehospital continuing education within the prior two (2) year period.
  3. Successfully complete the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT) written and skills exam within the past two (2) years.
  4. Complete a Department of Justice Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI) background check.

Once these requirements are met, complete the EMT – Recertification (Expired over 12 months) online application. 

In order to complete the application, copies of the following documents will need to be uploaded into the system: 

  • Current government-issued photo ID (e.g., state drivers license, state ID card, military ID card, passport)
  • Completed skills competency form EMSA-SCV 1/17
  • If applicable, court records and/or police reports as requested during the application process (these records must be attached to each application submitted, whether the EMS Agency has received them previously or not)

Upon completion of the appropriate requirements listed above, and confirmation that the applicant meets all the criteria specified in Title 22, Division 9, Chapter 2, Article 5 of the California Health and Safety Code, an individual shall be recertified as an Emergency Medical Technician. This certification is valid throughout the State of California. 

Certification cards will be mailed to applicants following verification of documentation submitted with the application.

Paramedic Accreditation

** Beginning 4/1/2021 applicants must apply through the online application process**

You should review the Agency’s policy PER 2 - Paramedic Accreditation before proceeding with your application.

Eligibility Requirements

All candidates for paramedic accreditation in San Mateo County shall meet the following accreditation requirements:

  1. Possess a current California paramedic license.
  2. Be employed as a paramedic with a designated San Mateo County ALS service provider or the EMS Agency (i.e. AMR or Fire Service ALS provider).

Once these requirements are met, please complete the Paramedic – Initial Accreditation online application.

In order to complete the application, copies of the following documents will need to be uploaded into the system:

  • Gov’t issued photo ID
  • Current and valid California Paramedic License
  • CPR Certification
  • ACLS Certification
  • PALS/PEPP Certification
  • Prehospital Traumatic Life Support (PHTLS) or International Trauma Life Support (ITLS) Certification
  • If applicable, court records and/or police reports as requested during the application process

Online applications will not be accepted until all the required documentation has been uploaded.

Once the online application has been submitted and the EMS Agency has confirmed that the applicant meets all the criteria specified in Title 22, Division 9, Chapter 4, Article 5, Section 100166 of the California Code of Regulations, an individual shall be accredited as a Paramedic in San Mateo County.

Maintaining Paramedic Accreditation

  1. Paramedic accreditation to practice in San Mateo County shall be continuous if the accredited paramedic meets the following requirements: 
    • Continuously possesses a valid California paramedic license, AHA BLS, ACLS, PALS/PEPP, and a County-approved trauma credential;
    • Maintains continuous employment as a paramedic with a LEMSA authorized ALS service provider or within the LEMSA.
    • Has completed each annual LEMSA required policy, procedure, and protocol update subsequent to attaining initial accreditation.
  2. Complete an electronic application for paramedic reaccreditation through the LEMSA’s online license management system within thirty (30) calendar days of California paramedic licensure renewal;
  3. Continuous accreditation shall be verified and authorized by the LEMSA every two (2) years in a period that coincides with the paramedic’s California paramedic licensure.