EMT-B Class Starts on August 24th at Green Bank

We interviewed Janet Ghigo about the start of a new West Virginia Basic Emergency Medical Technician (EMT-B) class that will be starting in in Green Bank on August 24th. Janet will be the instructor of this 150 hour class and tells us about the class and how to participate.

“I am here talking about the EMT class that’s going to be offered again this fall” said Janet. “It’s the National Curriculum for EMT Basics, and we will be having the class in Green Bank. The first class is Thursday, August 24th at six o’clock in the evening – all the classes are going to be from six to ten in the evening. They will be on week nights; we have no Friday classes, no weekend classes. Classes are going to be usually two to three days per week. There may be one week that we have class four days just in order to be able to finish everything in the first week in December and then do our testing in the second week in December.  There is no need to pre-register; anybody who shows up on August 24th and is interested in taking the class will be in the class. We’ll do registration that night. I do have a correction from what was in the newspaper and that is I have just learned that the tuition has been increased from what it was last year. The tuition is now three hundred dollars for the class, and the book will be about a hundred dollars more and these is a slight fee for other materials. In order to take the class, you don’t need to be a member of a department. One advantage of being a member of a department is that sometimes they will pay your tuition and so that’s worth looking into.”

Janet said that anyone who thinks they might be interested in becoming an EMT can come down on August 24th and start taking the class, and if they decide after a few classes that it is not for them, they can drop out without being charged the tuition.  Janet lets potential students know that the class does involve a lot of work.

“It is about a three and a half month class, and it’s a lot of work for the students and it’s a lot of work for me” Janet said. “I am going to be using the same text book that I have used for the last several years. It’s called ‘EMT Complete’ and it’s called a comprehensive work text published by Brady. But if you know somebody who took the class in the last two or three years, this is the book they have and they may be willing to let you use it for the class. I’ve had very good luck with it; we’ve had excellent pass rates (in) every class I’ve done with this book.”

Janet points out some of the advantages to becoming an EMT and some of the medical conditions modern EMT’s can diagnose and treat.

There’s always a good possibility of being able to pick up at least some hours, if not a full time job at the Hospital. They are always looking for EMT’s” said Janet. “During winter, Snowshoe is always looking for EMT’s because they are always pretty busy up there. And every squad needs more people that are volunteers  just to give them a better opportunity to have someone who’s available through the day and through the night because ambulances respond 24/7 365 because people get sick and injured 24/7 365. It is a lot more interesting than it used to be. It used to be in the old days, and some of you listening will remember the days that we just rushed out; threw people on a back board, put oxygen on them and drove very fast. We don’t do that anymore. EMTs get a lot more training in how to do a good physical exam, and based on the exam that they do, they can figure out what sort of treatment is needed and in many cases can do the treatment. Many treatments that used to be ALS (Advanced Life Support) are now done at the BLS (Basic Life support) level. So it’s a little bit more rewarding, I think,  then when people thought of themselves as the personnel in a big white taxicab on the way to the hospital, because they are now actually doing treatments. They can measure glucose and determine whether someone is having a problem with their sugar being too high or maybe too low, of course if it’s too low you can treat it. You can also treat anaphylactic severe allergic reactions – they don’t have to have their own treatment, we’ll have that on the truck and you will learn how to use that. People who are having severe asthmatic reactions, you don’t have to get a medic for that, you can treat that. You’ll learn how to run twelve lead EKGs because in West Virginia, that is something EMT Basics do right at the beginning of a call for anybody with cardiac chest pain. We’ll also talk about when it is necessary to get a Medic and how you would get one.”

Again, if you think you want to be an EMT Basic, come to the Green Bank Observatory’s Science Center at 6 p.m. on August 24th. For more information, you can call Janet at  304-456-3298.

Story By

Tim Walker

Tim is the WVMR News Reporter. Tim is a native of Maryland who started coming to Pocahontas County in the 1970’s as a caver. He bought land on Droop Mountain off Jacox Road in 1976 and built a small house there in the early 80’s. While still working in Maryland, Tim spent much time at his place which is located on the Friars Hole Cave Preserve. Retiring in 2011 as a Lieutenant with the Anne Arundel County Police Department in Maryland, Tim finally took the plunge and moved from Maryland to his real home on Droop Mountain. He began working as the Pocahontas County Reporter for Allegheny Mountain Radio in January of 2015.

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