Keystone Voluntary
Emergency Medical Services

What's an "EMT?"

An "EMT" is an Emergency Medical Technician - of which there are several levels. Each level takes a certain amount of training and commitment from the volunteer.

Volunteers for Keystone EMS usually take classes, in their own time, at Kirkwood Community College in Cedar Rapids. Keystone EMS will pay for a member to take these classes, in return for a commitment to stay - as an active member - on the Department for no less than one year.

That's not the end of the training, though. Once certified, an EMT must continually refresh and up-date their skills, requiring a particular number of hours/year, depending on their grade.
If you are interested in becoming a memeber of the Keystone EMS, please contact us, and tell us about yourself.

The Gradings are:

Grade Hours of
Initial Training
Hours/2 Years to Refresh/Update Skills
First Responder 60 12
EMT-D (Defibrillator) 120 24
EMT-B (Basic) 120 24
EMT-I (Intermediate) 56 36
EMT-P (Paramedic) 468 48
Paramedic Specialist Degree Program 60

First Responder
The purpose of this program is to learn basic emergency stabilization skills for the sick and injured prior to arrival of an ambulance or rescue squad. The course includes lectures and labs. Prerequisites for this class are: Certification in C.P.R. for health care professionals (must be obtained prior to class starting date).

Once First Responder certification has been successfully completed, further classes to obtain Defibrillator training need to be taken, to become an EMT-D.

This program consists of instruction preparing individuals in entrance level emergency care. Students learn basics in cardio-respiratory emergencies, seizures, diabetic emergencies, trauma-related injuries, and other medical emergencies and response protocols. To become certified, participants must successfully complete the National Registry EMT-Basic certifying exam with a minimum score of 70%. Students who complete the course with an 80% or higher average will be eligible for National Registry of EMT's testing at the Basic level and the Iowa EMT-B certification.

This course teaches basic knowledge and skills in IV therapy and fluid replacement, increasing the skill level of EMT-Bs working or volunteering for rural EMS services without paramedics. This course leads to eligibility for certification as an Iowa EMT-I. Course offerings are limited. Must be EMT-B certified to be eligible for the course.

This program trains EMT-B or EMT-I personnel advanced technical skills in airway management, intravenous therapy and emergency cardiac care. Although this level of certification is most advantageous in rural areas, career advancement is limited. It is important to note that this course prepares individuals for the National Registration at the EMT Intermediate (EMT-I) level, not the paramedic level.

Paramedic Specialist
Paramedic Specialists provide extensive pre-hospital care through administration of IV fluids, manual defibrillation, advanced airway techniques, ECG interpretation and use of other complex medical equipment. Paramedics are employed in a number of settings, including private firms, fire departments, and hospitals. Completion of this program prepares the student for the National Registry Paramedic level examination. The RCEMSE offers both certificate and AAS degree programs in Paramedic Specialist. The degree program includes health care courses, general education courses and an advanced EMS core curriculum.