Things You Should Know About the Texas EMT License Process

If you are considering a career as an emergency medical technician (EMT) in Texas, there are a few things you should know about the licensing process, including the need to complete a Texas EMT course. The Department of State Health Services licenses EMTs in Texas.

General Requirements

Texas EMTs must be at least 18 years of age. They must also have GEDs or high school diplomas. These individuals must be able to lift 125 pounds and stoop and bend easily and frequently. EMT schools may now require medical examinations to ensure you are physically capable of doing the job.

Every candidate must also pass a criminal and fingerprint-based background checks. Those with criminal backgrounds may go through a review process, while others will be immediately disqualified based on the crimes they are convicted of.


Prospective EMTs must complete an approved EMT training program. This program must include 140 hours of learning in labs, clinics, classrooms and the field. Texas-specific programs will meet these requirements, whereas national programs may exceed them, though they are typically less than 200 hours.

New regulations require competency-based programs and knowledge, so skill acquisition receives a greater emphasis in current programs than in previous programs.


Reciprocity for out-of-state EMTs may be granted after they successfully complete the National Registry exam. Although their application process can be expedited, those with military training must also complete the exam to gain reciprocity.


Texas has adopted the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians exam. Before prospective EMTs submit their applications, they must pass this computer-based test. The test will cost approximately $80 to take, and each student must have a National Registry account to take the exam. The exam covers your cognitive abilities, while your practical skills will be tested at your school

After you have completed your exam, education and background checks, you can begin applying for your Texas EMT license. The application process takes approximately 4-6 weeks.