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Reciprocity, Legal Recognition and Equivalency


If you are certified in another state or are a nurse or Military Corpsmen, you may want to review this section.

BLS and ALS Reciprocity

The Office of Emergency Medical Services, Virginia Department of Health, recognizes all current National Registry certifications for reciprocity.

In State Candidates

In state candidates—candidates who were enrolled in a Virginia approved training program—will receive reciprocity electronically upon completion of their National Registry certification testing.

Out of State Candidates

Anyone who is coming into Virginia’s EMS system with a current National Registry certification will be required to complete an Application for Reciprocity and mail copies of EMS credentials to the Division of Educational Development of the Office of EMS.

The Office of EMS only recognizes certification from The National Registry for reciprocity in Virginia.  No fee is required for basic life support (BLS) or advanced life support (ALS) certification.

For a reciprocity application package, please click here.

Legal Recognition for Emergency Medical Technician

The Virginia Office of EMS will accept and consider application from providers with a current EMT certification from ANY state  or U. S. territory for certification in Virginia through Legal Recognition.  Once granted, certification through Legal Recognition  will be valid for a maximum of one calendar year OR the time left on the present certification, whichever is shortest.

Candidates for Legal Recognition must complete an Application for Legal Recognition and mail copies of EMS credentials to the Division of Educational Development of the Office of EMS.

No initial test is required for Legal Recognition. In order to recertify, providers must complete the required Virginia EMS continuing education criteria prior to their certification expiration date and take a written and practical examination.   Providers who are certified through Legal Recognition are not eligible to be waived from testing by their agency Operational Medical Director (OMD).

For a Legal Recognition application package, please click here.

Equivalency Certification for Emergency Medical Technician

LPNs, RNs, Physician’s Assistants (PAs) and Military Corpsmen can request to challenge the EMT certification exam.  Candidates  must complete the 36-hour EMT recertification requirements and pass the Virginia written examination and practical examination.

Candidates for Equivalency must complete an Application for Equivalency and mail copies of EMS credentials to the Division of Educational Development of the Office of EMS.  Upon approval for equivalency eligibility, the Office of EMS will assign the applicant an alpha-numeric Virginia EMS number.  Acquiring the required 36 hours can then be started, using the assigned number to submit the training hours to our office.

For a equivalency application package, please click here.


Last Updated: 10-11-2012

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