Advocate Condell Medical Center recently held its annual graduation ceremony for recruits who are now officially licensed paramedics in Illinois.
There were 18 graduates in this year's class, and this marks the 12th year of the paramedic training program at Advocate Condell since it was given official designation as an EMS resource hospital for training paramedics in 2000.
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"We are proud to have educated our 12th class in paramedicine," said Deb Semenek, Advocate Condell's EMS Services Coordinator. "There are now 18 very qualified paramedics to serve our community."
This year's graduates completed 470 classroom hours, 296 hours spent in an ambulance, and 288 clinical hours, which included time spent in the ER, OR, Pediatric and OB units, among many others.
At the ceremony, Countryside Fire Department Chief Jeff Steingart addressed the graduates. "You turn lives around. That it is not only what you do, it is who you are now as a paramedic," said Steingart. "Use your knowledge and skills to provide the best emergency medical service to every patient you encounter. Remember always that you are providing a service to a person."
Steingart added, "Be passionate, committed and dedicated. You are a paramedic 24/7/365. Make it last for 20-plus years."