Dr. Mackey’s letter is available, in full, below or here.
An Open Letter to the National EMS Community from the Chairman of the Board for the National Registry of EMTs, on behalf of the Board of Directors for the National Registry of EMTs, on the Requirement of CAAHEP Accreditation as Eligibility for the Paramedic Examination
Dear Friends and Colleagues,
Since 2013, the National Registry of EMTs has required paramedic candidates seeking National Certification to graduate from a Commission on the Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP) accredited program or a program with a Letter of Review from the Committee on Accreditation of Educational Programs for the Emergency Medical Services Professions (CoAEMSP). Increasingly, over the past several years, stakeholders and State Officials have challenged the National Registry on this requirement and requested that we consider additional eligibility options. We have listened and extensively contemplated these concerns.
On June 14-15, 2022, the National Registry Board of Directors (National Registry Board) deliberated for several hours, evaluating any and all available options that might assist those states that have expressed concerns with the accreditation requirement. The Board resolutely appreciates the necessity and importance of quality education for all EMS students, which is achieved through standardized approval and accreditation processes. Furthermore, the National Registry Board of Directors acknowledges that quality EMS education is best achieved through a systems approach in which the construct of the educational process brings together multiple interconnected and interdependent domains in order to maximize the student’s learning and grasp of the educational concepts. Finally, the National Registry Board reaffirms and places great emphasis on the importance, value, and necessity of ensuring the protection of the public through the use of a scientifically sound, valid and reliable examination that evaluates the competence of EMS candidates.
To these ends, the National Registry Board of Directors drafted a resolution that, if approved following a public comment period, would direct the National Registry Executive Director to update the initial certification requirements for all levels of certification (EMR, EMT, AEMT, and Paramedic) to include successful completion of an EMS education program that meets or exceeds the National Emergency Medical Services Education Standards and:
- has been awarded CAAHEP-accreditation, or
- has been issued a CoAEMSP “Letter of Review,” or
- has received state EMS office approval
The National Registry Board recognizes that this change expands eligibility requirements, allowing states to choose the accreditation requirement for their constituents. This policy change will also address the concerns of EMS stakeholders while preserving the safety of the communities that they serve.
This resolution will be open for public comment for 60 days. The NREMT Board of Directors eagerly solicits input from its key stakeholders and the public. Public comment can be made here to this and all other resolutions approved at the June 2022 National Registry Board meeting. The National Registry Board will deliberate over any public input in August 2022 and issue a final decision at that time. The National Registry Board, leadership and staff deeply appreciate the partnerships we have and look forward to working collaboratively with all of our stakeholders as we endeavor to improve all aspects of prehospital care.
Kevin E Mackey MD, FAEMS
Chairman of the Board
National Registry of EMTs