Most members serve as patient care providers.  However, we have a number of other types of volunteer classifications.  You can specify the specific type of member you wish to be when applying.  It is possible to serve in more than one capacity, but we encourage new members to start with one and get settled in before taking on additional responsibilities.

If you aren’t sure what type of member you would like to be or have questions, please feel free to contact one of our Membership Coordinators at (757) 385-1999.

Membership Categories Include:

  • Patient Care/Operational
  • Special Response Team
  • Marine Rescue Team
  • Search and Rescue Team
  • Support Member

Patient Care/Operational

This is the core team of the organization.  New members are trained to the Emergency Medical Technician level through our Training Division.  Applicants who are already trained will participate in an abbreviated orientation program to teach them about Virginia Beach specific equipment and policies.

All EMT start out riding on the ambulance as an intern until they complete their field qualifications.  This field training experience will also include emergency vehicle driver training.   Internships can last 2-6 months depending on the member’s proficiency and number of calls run.  We want our members to be comfortable with their skills before operating independently.

Once qualified, EMTs are assigned to staff rescue ambulances across the City, answering all types of 911 calls from illness to car crashes.  New EMTs stand four twelve hour shifts monthly on a scheduled basis.

Some members opt to continue with their training and development.  Opportunities available to rescue squad members include:

  • Advanced life support certification (Advanced EMT, Intermediate or Paramedic)
  • Vehicle rescue teams
  • Bike rescue teams
  • Tactical Medic (Paramedic only)
  • Marine Medic (Paramedic only)
  • Flight Medic (Paramedic only)

Special Response Team

Members of this team staff one of the department’s two Disaster Medical Support Units/Mass Casualty Trucks.  These trucks respond to all major incidents to provide supplies and other logistics support.  While on duty, operators also assist with moving equipment between facilities or perform other support activities needed for operational readiness by the rescue squads.

Team members are not required to hold any medical certification.  New members participate in an orientation and driver training experience before being qualified to operate independently.

Marine Rescue Team

Members of this team staff rescue boats and participate in water rescue and recovery operations.  The team consists of boat operators, rescue swimmers and divers.  Members are assigned to regularly scheduled duties, conducting pre-planned patrols and responding to emergent events.

Team members are not required to hold any medical certification.  Training and certification varies based on the position.

Search and Rescue Team

The Search and Rescue (SAR) Team provides medical response teams at special events as well specialized open area search capability.  SAR members with medical training are assigned to bicycle teams or all-terrain-vehicles at large gathering events such as marathons and festivals.   Members interested in search activities respond as needed to assist with missing person operations.

The SAR Team provides position-specific training to its members.  Patient care providers must be active members of a rescue squad.  Non-patient care providers can be members of the SAR Team alone.

Support Members

There is a tremendous need for administrative and logistical support within the rescue squads and the department.  Volunteers are welcome to participate behind the scenes with everything from fund-raising to maintenance.  Members can join an individual rescue squad or join the Department of EMS Support Services Team.

No medical training is required to become a Support Member.  Members who intend to drive City or rescue squad vehicles must complete a basic driver orientation.

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