GFD personnel take certified paramedic course, a first for Guam

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The paramedic program will also be nationally accredited, meaning those in the program will be at the same level as any paramedic in the United States after graduating from the course. This is a first in Guam's history. (PNC photo)

The Guam Fire Department held a press conference Monday morning to launch a paramedics course at the Guam Community College that will be of great benefit to the island community.

The School of EMS is an accredited paramedics program based in Texas. The school is partnering up with GovGuam and the Guam Community College to bring the program to the island.

They are currently conducting in-person skills assessments and scenario-based training at the community college.

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Governor Lou Leon Guerrero, who by profession is a critical care nurse, said that she’s excited to finally have this course on Guam.

She speaks about how this will definitely make a huge beneficial impact to the island.

“This is a great significant movement towards progress and advanced healthcare in the field. Paramedics do more than just vital signs. They intubate, they decompress, they stabilize fractures, they do IVs, and they administer medications. To me, it’s like bringing the emergency room out into the field and you will see that this is going to be a way of saving more lives out there,” Leon Guerrero said.

One of the instructors from the School of EMS, Director for Clinical Services, Vicky LaMay, discussed how the program will operate.

“This class is about 46 to 47 weeks. We have 3 live training sessions throughout the course, this is the first one. We’re going to come twice more. On the third one, they’ll get to take their national registry cycle motor skills. As we get done, we leave and that will get them to finish out the course. After the course is over, they take the national registry exam and that’s the one most paramedics take to become paramedics,” LaMay said.

LaMay added that the course is also an online program where the paramedics in training can look over the pre-recorded lectures.

The paramedic program will also be nationally accredited, meaning those in the program will be at the same level as any paramedic in the United States after graduating from the course. This is a first in Guam’s history.

According to the governor, those interested in participating in the program can also come straight from high school and sign up. Saying that this program can also be integrated into the career path programs for high schoolers in the future.

The governor added that this program is going to be the first of many and hopes her vision of every fireman or EMT will become a paramedic through this.

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