Information and resources on the certification of Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) and Paramedics, including temporary certification, during the COVID-19 outbreak.
Guide COVID-19 and MA EMS Certification
Table of Contents
Certifications Expired April 1, 2020
Certifications that expired April 1, 2020 are extended until December 31, 2020.
If your certification was set to expire April 1, 2020, but you did not complete the education requirements by June 30, 2020, you will need to gain NREMT certification using your current MA EMS certification. In order to gain NREMT certification:
- Apply for National Registry certification and complete their entry education and cognitive exam requirements. You can find more about the NREMT certification process on their website at www.nremt.org.
- Complete a Psychomotor Skills Verification in lieu of a state-approved practical exam with your agency training officer or an instructor/coordinator at any Accredited Training Institution in MA. Learn more about psychomotor skills verification.
- Once you obtain National Registry certification, submit an initial MA EMS application on paper. Please visit our initial certification page for detailed instructions and information about the certification process.
Advanced EMT or EMT Paramedic:
- Apply for National Registry certification and complete their entry education and cognitive and psychomotor exam requirements. You can find more about the NREMT certification process on their website at www.nremt.org.
MA EMS Certification Expiring 2021
- Follow the recertification requirements for your level. Click here for recertification guides and additional information.
- The Distributive Education restrictions have been waived for the 2021 recertification cycle. All education may be completed using distributive education.
Certification Pathways During COVID-19
- If you hold current National Registry (not provisional) certification and wish to gain MA EMS certification, click here
- If your MA EMS certification has expired and you wish to reinstate (not temporary certification) your expired certification, click here.
- If you are interested in Temporary MA EMS certification, please see the instructions below.
Temporary EMS Certification due to COVID-19
In accordance with the Commissioner of Public Health’s April 3, 2020 order maximizing health care provider availability, to respond to Governor Baker’s declared State of Emergency, the Department is issuing temporary EMT certification, upon request.
- Currently hold EMT certification/licensure (in good standing, at any level) in another state; OR
- Previously held Massachusetts EMS certification (at any level), but it has expired within the last 10 years (after March 29, 2010). This does not include certifications that have been revoked, suspended or surrendered.
- Currently hold CPR (all levels) and/or ACLS (Paramedics only) certification in order to obtain certification to work as an EMT at any level in Massachusetts. Note that due to the COVID-19 State of Emergency, any CPR or ACLS credential that expired on or after February 1, 2020, is deemed current through July 1, 2020.
Applicants for temporary EMT certification must submit the following:
- Temporary Certification Application
- CPR (all levels) and/or ACLS (for Paramedic applicants). See above note for expiration dates.
- Out of state providers must have each state or licensing agency, where they currently or previously held certification/licensure, complete and submit a state verification form to our office. Please send this form to the state where you have held certification/licensure.
Applicants for temporary EMT certification may need to submit the following additional documentation:
If you answer “yes’ to any of the “EMT Background” or “Criminal History” questions, you will need to send in additional documentation and/or explanation.
- If you have answered “Yes” to Question 1, and have ever held EMS certification or licensure in another state, please also include the Out of State Verification form: State verification of EMS licensure and/or certification | (DOC). Please complete the top portion and send to the state(s) where you have previously been certified, and they will return to the MA Department of Public Health (DPH). You may find contact information for state EMS agencies here.
- If you have answered “Yes” to Question 2, and ever been certified or licensed as another type of healthcare provider in Massachusetts in another jurisdiction, please submit a copy of that license, by mail or email, to the Office of Emergency Medical Services (contact information listed above).
- If you answered "Yes" to Question 4 on the application, please submit a CORI packet that includes:
- A CORI acknowledgment form: Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI) Acknowledgment Form | (DOC)
- A detailed written explanation concerning the circumstance(s) in question
- Forms must be notarized based on a government-issued photo ID and include the signature of a Notary Public with the stamp or seal on page 3. Notaries are commonly found at banks
- When complete, the form must be submitted by mail to the address listed at top of form
Duration of Temporary EMT Certification
Temporary certifications will remain valid until the termination of the state of emergency for out of state EMTs, and 90 days following the termination of the state of emergency for previously MA certified EMTs. Temporary EMTs who wish to become fully certified as EMTs after their temporary certification expires must meet all the standard regulatory entry/reinstatement requirements (including holding National Registry certification).
Extension of CPR and ACLS Expirations
Due to the novel Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak, CPR and ACLS certificates of completion that expired between February 1, 2020 and June 30, 2020 are valid at least through July 1, 2020 and at most up to 120 days beyond the date of expiration. Additional information is available in this DPH memo.