Hazmat for EMS

In the EMS profession, encountering various types of patients is common, each presenting their own unique emergency situation. One such scenario involves patients exposed to or covered with hazardous materials. Without proper training and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), these patients can pose a risk of exposure to EMS providers, turning the situation into an emergency for them as well. The Hazmat for EMS course is specifically designed to equip EMS providers with the necessary tools and knowledge to protect themselves and effectively care for patients in such hazardous situations. Whether you are an EMT Basic, Advanced, Intermediate, or a Paramedic, this course offers valuable tips and tricks to ensure the best possible outcome for both you and your patient. By completing this course, EMS providers can enhance their skills and confidence in managing hazardous material incidents effectively.

Course Description

This course equips emergency medical personnel with the skills and knowledge required to respond safely and effectively to hazardous materials incidents, aligning with the standards set by NFPA 473. Participants will learn how to assess risks, manage contaminated patients, and perform decontamination procedures, while ensuring their own safety and that of others. The course combines classroom instruction with practical exercises, providing comprehensive training on the medical management of patients exposed to hazardous substances.


This course meets or exceeds the National Fire Protection Association NFPA 473 Standard for Competence for EMS Personnel Responding to Hazardous Materials/Weapons of Mass Destruction Incidents.

Course Overview

Target Audience

Emergency medical technicians, paramedics, and other medical personnel involved in emergency response operations.


Basic certification in emergency medical services (EMS) is required. Prior knowledge of hazardous materials response is beneficial but not mandatory.

Duration: 8 hours

Format: Combination of classroom instruction, practical exercises, and simulations

Certification: Participants will receive a certificate of completion that verifies their competence in Hazardous Materials Incident Command as outlined by NFPA 473. 

*Certificates will be mailed after successful completion of the course.


  • Understand the roles and responsibilities of emergency medical personnel in hazardous materials incidents.
  • Recognize and identify different types of hazardous materials and their associated risks.
  • Apply appropriate safety measures and personal protective equipment (PPE) usage.
  • Perform patient assessment, management, and decontamination effectively.
  • Coordinate with other emergency response teams to ensure a comprehensive response.

Course Outline

  1. Introduction to NFPA 473 and Hazardous Materials 
    • Overview of NFPA 473 standards
    • Types of hazardous materials and their health impacts
    • Legal and ethical considerations in hazardous materials incidents

  2. Safety and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) 
    • Types of PPE and selection criteria
    • Donning and doffing procedures
    • Limitations and maintenance of PPE

  3. Scene Assessment and Safety
    • Recognizing and understanding placards and labels
    • Use of monitoring equipment
    • Establishing safety zones and patient triage

  4. Medical Management of Exposed Individuals 
    • Pathophysiology of common toxic exposures
    • Initial patient assessment and management
    • Advanced medical care for toxic exposures

  5. Decontamination Procedures
    • Decontamination principles and levels
    • Setting up decontamination zones
    • Patient decontamination and contamination control

  6. Patient Triage and Transport
    • Triage protocols for contaminated patients
    • Preparation for transport
    • Communication with receiving medical facilities

  7. Practical Exercises and Scenarios
    • Hands-on practice with PPE and decontamination equipment
    • Scenario-based training exercises

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