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University of Arizona to offer new degree program for paramedics

(University of Arizona College of Medicine Photo)

PHOENIX — A new degree program for trained paramedics is coming to the University of Arizona this fall.

The Bachelor of Science major and minor in emergency medical services is designed to enhance emergency medical professionals’ leadership and clinical skills, preparing them for a future in prehospital medicine.

The program will be one of only a few in the nation administered through a clinical department.

“It really is an atypical career in the sense that we work 24 hours a day and there isn’t an hour where emergencies don’t occur,” Joshua Gaither, UA associate professor of emergency medicine, told KTAR News 92.3 FM on Thursday.

In April, the Arizona Board of Regents approved the new program.

The undergraduate degree is the first offered by UA College of Medicine – Tucson’s clinical department and the second in the medical school.

The degree is open to current state- or national-certified paramedics or those who have completed an associate’s degree in paramedic care at a regionally accredited community college or university.

“One purpose of this degree program is to teach our paramedics how to transform their systems to embrace the most cutting-edge research,” Gaither said.

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