EMTs and CNAs are healthcare professionals who are responsible for providing care to patients. Though both these professionals help patients and save their lives, the duties, responsibilities and work environments of both are different. However, you must have a license to work as a EMT or CNA.

Emergency Medical Technician

EMTEMTs handle medical emergencies and they are the first responders to such situations. Mostly, they work in outdoors and they need to take ambulance to medical emergency scene. In order to ensure the safety of patients, EMTs need to stabilize patients till the arrival of other medical professionals. They also need to transfer patients to a medical facility for providing further care. They must be able to use equipment for cardiac emergencies, clear airways, perform CPR, and restrain patients with potential back, neck and head injuries. EMTs can become paramedics by gaining additional education and training. Besides passing National Registry of EMT examination, EMTs must also have some additional requirements like passing a state administered examination.

To start an EMS training program, you must have a high school diploma or GED. However, before joining the program, you must also obtain a cardiopulmonary resuscitation certification. Education requirements of different levels of EMTs are also different. If students want to join basic level EMS program, they have to undergo 100 hours of accredited training. However, EMT- Intermediate needs to undergo around 1000 hours of training. The salaries of EMTs are higher than CNAs. As per the data available in, a medical emergency technician can earn around $37,200 per year.

Certified Nursing Assistant

CNACNA is responsible for providing bedside care to patients, which include helping patients to walk and move, bathing and feeding patients, etc. They are also trained for taking basic vital signs such as blood pressure, temperature, breathing and heart rates, etc. Generally, nurse assistants work in nursing homes, home healthcare services, and hospitals. They are working under the direct supervision of a registered nurse, physician, or LPN. They can become a registered nurse, licensed vocational nurse or licensed practical nurse if they acquire additional education.

Just like EMTs, CNAs also need GED or high school degree for starting a training program. But CNAs do not need CPR certification. The duration of training for CNAs is around nine months. However, the duration varies depending on the training program. In order to work as a CNA, you must pass a credentialing examination. You can appear for this examination by submitting an application and pay fees. Most states also check criminal background of a person. Certified medical assistant (CMA) is the higher level of CNA. You can become a CMA if you pass the credentialing examination. If you become a CMA, you will be able to dispense medications to patients. On the basis of responsibilities, experience and location, the salaries of CNAs and EMTs may vary. The average annual salary of CNAs is around $27,500.

Which Career is Better?

If you are looking for good remuneration, EMT is better than CNA. However, EMT need to spend their time outdoors even under harsh environmental conditions. On the other hand CNAs can work indoors. Both CNAs and EMTs have to do physically demanding works such as heavy lifting, working holidays, weekends, and nights, etc. If you love to work outdoors, EMT is a good choice. CNA is a good career for those who prefer to work indoors.