Emergency Medical Responder

About the Emergency Medical Responder Course:


The Canadian Red Cross Emergency Medical Responder Course offered by Priority Care First Aid in Greater Vancouver and the Fraser Valley is a 120 hour course, split between 40 hours of pre-read and pre-course work and 80 hours of classroom tuition.

During this time you will learn about:

  • The Professional Emergency Medical Responder
  • Anatomy & Physiology
  • Prevention of Disease Transmission
  • Managing the Emergency Scene
  • Patient Assessment (primary and secondary survey, including blood pressure assessment, pulse oximetry (SPO2 monitoring), and chest auscultation)
  • Airway & Ventilation (including the use of oral airways, nasal airways, suction, oxygen therapy, pocket and bag valve masks)
  • Respiratory Emergencies (Asthma, COPD, bronchitis, emphysema, pneumonia, CHF. Also included is assisting with patient medications for asthma/COPD and anaphylaxis)
  • Pharmacology (including the administration of Entonox for pain management)
  • Circulation Emergencies (including care of the angina and heart attack chest pain patient, assisting with patient medications (nitroglycerin and ASA) for chest pain, care of the stroke patient, and CPR and AED use)
  • Shock & Bleeding (including tourniquet application)
  • Head & spine injuries (including spinal grips, spinal rolls, helmet removal, hard collar application, use of the spine board, clamshell, and KED for spinal immobilization)
  • Chest, Abdominal, and Pelvic Injuries
  • Fractures & sprains (including use of the Sager traction splint)
  • Soft Tissue Injuries
  • Sudden Medical Emergencies (fainting, seizures, and diabetes. Included is the use of a glucometer and oral glucose for managing the hypoglycemic diabetic patient)
  • Environmental emergencies (heat and cold emergencies)
  • Poisons
  • Special Populations
  • Childbirth
  • Crisis Intervention
  • Reaching & Moving People (including an ambulance orientation and use of common patient movement devices such as stretchers and stairchairs
  • Multiple Casualty Incidents

Course Delivery:


Your Emergency Medical Responder course will be taught by paramedics with decades of experience. The course provides a mix of lecture, group activities, practical skill stations and practical scenario practice, allowing you to learn and practice EMR skills while working with pre-hospital care providers (paramedics) who have done thousands of 911 calls.

During the course you will work with the same equipment currently used by providers in British Columbia’s 911 system (fire fighters and paramedics from the BC Ambulance Service). This will allow you to gain comfort and experience using the same pre-hospital equipment you will use when employed as an EMR.

By the end of this course you will feel confident responding to care for car accident victims, people experiencing heart attacks, patients with fractures and spinal injuries, unconscious diabetics, and many more!

Pre-requisite to take the Emergency Medical Responder course:

Current Standard First Aid with CPR-C certificate.

Course Completion Requirements:

Successful completion of the Canadian Red Cross Emergency Medical Responder Course is based on 100% attendance, completion of two practical scenarios (one medical and one trauma), and a 75% or better mark on a knowledge examination.

Upon successful completion of the Canadian Red Cross Emergency Medical Responder course you will receive Canadian Red Cross certification in Emergency Medical Responder, CPR-HCP, and AED. These certifications are valid for 3 years, and are nationally recognized.


In order to practice professionally as an EMR in the 911 System (not necessarily in the private sector) you must obtain EMR certification, and then successfully examine and obtain a license to practice at that level from the provincial body that governs pre-hospital care in your province. In British Columbia this body is the Emergency Medical Assistant’s Licensing Board (the EMALB).

More information on becoming licensed as an EMR in BC can be found on the Emergency Medical Assistant’s Licensing Board’s website HERE.

The process to become licensed in BC and eligible for employment in the 911 system is essentially as follows:

  1. Successfully pass the Emergency Medical Responder course with Priority Care First Aid
  2. Once certified, apply for and successfully pass the EMALB EMR Examinations (2 practical scenarios, one multiple choice medical exam, one jurisprudence exam)
  3. Apply for an EMR license with the EMALB

NOTE: The EMALB Licensing exams are separate from your Emergency Medical Responder course. Any costs associated with obtaining your EMALB license are separate from the course fees paid to Priority Care First Aid for your EMR course.

Our Emergency Medical Responder courses are located in the lower mainland, making them easily available to students throughout the Greater Vancouver area (Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster, Port Moody, Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam, Maple Ridge, Langley, Cloverdale, Surrey, White Rock, Delta, Richmond, North Vancouver, West Vancouver) and the Fraser Valley (Mission, Aldergrove, Abbotsford, Chilliwack).

To view upcoming course dates please click HERE.