Please note that the Irish College of Paramedics is not an educational institution, and cannot provide advice regarding entry into paramedic education programmes. Please contact the institution in question directly with any enquiries - we receive a large volume of enquiries in relation to this matter.

So you want to become a paramedic?

Many people see ambulances whizzing by with blue lights flashing and sirens blazing and wonder what emergency they are on route to. For others there are questions such as; what training do these ambulance personnel undergo? How long does the training take? How difficult a career is it to get into? In a nutshell…how can I become a paramedic?

Within Ireland there are presently three routes to becoming a paramedic: National Ambulance Service Student Paramedic Recruitment, Dublin Fire Brigade recruitment, and the University of Limerick BSc in Paramedic Studies.

Did I hear that there are degree courses now?

There are several paramedic degree programmes on offer in Ireland. Many of these are "top-up" degrees aimed at practicing paramedics who currently hold a Diploma or equivalent. The University of Limerick also offer a 4-year undergraduate degree for those who wish to become a paramedic - please see Education Programmes for more information.

Who decides what a paramedic can and can’t do?

Entry-to-practice requirements are put in place by the Pre Hospital Emergency Care Council (PHECC – who are the clinical governing body for prehospital practitioners in Ireland. Paramedic students must sit and pass independent PHECC exams which include multiple choice exams, short answer questions and practical exams to be eligible to practice and sit on the register of practitioners at the grade of Paramedic. Alternatively, qualified paramedics from other jurisdictions may apply to have their qualifications assessed for equivalency by PHECC.


Please note, the Irish College of Paramedics is not an educational college or university, and we do not offer paramedic courses or provide entry-to-practice education programmes.