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Army Air Force Navy

Medical Technician

Non-Commissioned Member | Full Time, Part Time

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Medical Technicians work with a variety of health care professionals including Medical Officers and Nursing Officers to treat the sick and injured in various Canadian Armed Forces' operations and units.

A Medical Technician has the following primary duties:

  • Provide initial care for patients;
  • Provide basic to advanced life support care independently and as a part of a multidisciplinary team;
  • Administer lifesaving interventions and treatments to trauma casualties;
  • Interview and record patient medical histories;
  • Instruct soldiers on Combat First Aid and Tactical Combat Casualty Care;
  • Manage soldier’s medical readiness, supplies and equipment;
  • Administer intravenous therapy;
  • Take and monitor patients’ vital signs;
  • Administer and dispense some medications in accordance with their scope of practice;
  • Assist patients in accessing various health services resources such as Mental Health services and physiotherapy;
  • Provide medical support during environmental operations;
  • Recover casualties from the point of injury and transport them to a medical facility by wheeled or tracked ambulance, or by air;
  • Participate in rescues from crashed vehicles, tanks, ships, aircraft and damaged buildings;
  • Give basic advice on disease prevention, hygiene and sanitation;
  • Perform specific environmental health and preventive medicine duties;
  • Collect specimens and perform basic laboratory procedures;
  • Operate and maintain medical and life-support equipment;
  • Perform electrocardiograms and audiograms;
  • Initiate, maintain and distribute medical records, documents, reports and returns; and
  • Maintain, replenish and account for general and medical supplies.

Work environment

Medical Technicians spend most of their careers working directly with the Canadian Armed Forces within Canada, on ships at sea, and deployed on international missions.  In the field, overseas and on ship, they usually work in shifts and, occasionally, on call.  In Clinics, they generally work regular hours.

Career Overview






Whether it’s in the heat of battle in a war torn nation, or a relief effort in the aftermath of an earthquake, in the Canadian Armed Forces, the role of Medical Technician takes on dimensions never imagined on a city street. For the men and women who accept the challenge, a career as a Med Tech brings moments of intense action – and a lifetime of immense rewards. At base clinics, at sea, on field exercises and on deployments in other parts of the world, Medical Technicians are a critical part of the military mission.


I’m Master Seaman Jennifer Blanche from St-John’s, Newfoundland, a Medical Technician posted at 1 Canadian Field Hospital in Garrison Petawawa, Ontario.

And I’m Corporal Patrick Noreau from Québec City. I’m a Medical Technician and I’m currently serving in the Canadian Forces Health Centre, Ottawa.

BLANCHE: In the Canadian Armed Forces, Medical Technicians spend most of their careers working directly with members of Army, Navy and Air Force units on bases across Canada, and at sea aboard naval ships. We work with doctors, nurses and physician assistants to provide acute and chronic healthcare services to Forces members.

BLANCHE: We do everything from patient screening and lab work, and treating patients on a general day-to-day basis.

NOREAU: You can work on a ship, you can work in a helicopter, you can work on the ground with the infantry… So, you get to work in different parts of the world, too, in different situations, so natural disasters, war zones, training with other countries. It’s always new environments, new people, new elements, new types of injuries according to where you work.

BLANCHE: You really have to call upon all your skill sets as a medic, be it your abilities to provide clinical care or pre-hospital emergency care. When Medical Technicians deploy, they provide the full spectrum of care to all military members serving on the mission.

NOREAU: My last deployment was in Eastern Europe. I was embedded within an infantry platoon. It was amazing, I mean, the relationship that you develop within your group is very unique to the Forces.

BLANCHE: Whether it’s providing initial care for patients, working on trauma cases or participating in rescues for accidents involving military vehicles or facilities – the work we do can be diverse and adventurous.

NOREAU: Right now, I’m in a clinic, I can be here for a few years. Then I’ll be sent to the Pacific coast for a few years, I can be sent overseas in an embassy. Very few trades within the Canadian Armed Forces have this opportunity to always be on the move or to follow the troops wherever they go.

BLANCHE: I travelled in 2010 to Haiti during the earthquake. We ended up seeing over 10,000 patients. Our entire team of the medical operation down there was only 30 people. So to see 10,000 patients in less than 60 days was amazing and it was very busy.

NOREAU: The training, experience, and level of responsibility is equal to or greater than what you would expect in comparable civilian occupations, but the Forces offers paid education and opportunities to travel. Military medics earn a salary while they are in training and then walk right into their careers. No student loans; no job search.

BLANCHE: Your first posting will be with a healthcare unit on a Canadian Armed Forces base. There, you’ll have 18 months of on-the-job training at the end of which you’ll be a fully qualified Medical Technician able to deploy on international missions.

BLANCHE: As a Medical Technician, the patients that you’re treating most often are your friends, they’re your co-workers. You see them every day.

NOREAU: This is very unique to the Forces – where you’re “it”. You need to know, you really need know your stuff. You need to be, like, super sharp.

BLANCHE: Medical Technicians in the Forces have opportunities to train with civilian agencies to maintain and improve our skills. On occasion, military medics will ride along with civilian paramedics in an ambulance, adding to an already impressive skill-set.

NOREAU: Your skills are consistently put to the test and there is a great deal of personal gratification when you make a difference in someone’s life.

NOREAU: As a Medical Technician, it’s pretty gratifying to be in that position where you get to know people personally, the trust that you’re given by your patients. I think that would be the biggest reward of being a Medical Technician.

BLANCHE: The leadership and the knowledge and the confidence that this job has brought me and has afforded me, I think that half of my friends back home would never recognize me. The adventure and the excitement and the friendship and the people here are unlike anything I’ve ever experienced in a civilian job.

Related Civilian Occupations

  • Primary Care Paramedic
  • Emergency Medical Attendant
  • Ambulance and First Aid Attendant
  • Registered Nursing Assistant
  • Licensed Practical Nurse


The first stage of training is the Basic Military Qualification course, or Basic Training, held at the Canadian Forces Leadership and Recruit School in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec. This training provides the basic core skills and knowledge common to all trades. A goal of this course is to ensure that all recruits maintain the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) physical fitness standard; as a result, the training is physically demanding. 

Basic military qualification – land course

After Basic Training, Army recruits go to a Military Training centre for the Basic Military Qualification - Land Course for approximately one month, which covers the following topics:

  • Army Physical Fitness;
  • Dismounted Offensive and Defensive Operations;
  • Reconnaissance Patrolling; and
  • Individual Field Craft.

Learn more about Basic Training here.

Medical Technicians complete their basic occupation training at the Canadian Forces Health Services Training Center in Borden, Ontario as well as an off-site civilian training institution.  The course which consists of three modules is completed over 47-48 weeks and covers the following:

  • Maintaining medical supplies and equipment
  • Screening patients and implementing patient care plans
  • Treating medical conditions
  • Administering diagnostic procedures, medications and continuous infusions
  • Managing airways and assisting with minor surgical procedures
  • Setting up deployed medical facilities
  • Treating casualties in an operational and CBRNE environment

At the off-site civilian training institution Medical Technicians complete a Primary Care Paramedic Course to obtain paramedic training.  This course is tailored to military requirements while meeting performance standards set by the Paramedic Association of Canada and approved by the Canadian Medical Association.  Medical Technicians receive the professional credential of Primary Care Paramedic Level I.

Medical Technicians may be offered the opportunity to develop specialized skills through formal courses and on-the-job training, including training to work in specialized operational units.  They may also apply for an Occupational Transfer and receive training in one of the following occupations:

  • Operating Room Technician;
  • Preventive Medicine Technician;
  • Biomedical Electronic Technician;
  • Aviation Physiology Technician; and
  • Physician Assistant.

Entry plans

The minimum required education to apply for this position is the completion of the provincial requirements for Grade 12 or Secondary 5 in Quebec with Grade 11 applied math or Math 426 in Quebec and any Biology and Chemistry course at the Grade 12 or Secondary 5 level.

The ideal candidate will already have a college diploma and a Primary Care Paramedic Level I certificate, the Forces may place you directly into an on-the-job training program following basic training.

Foreign education may be accepted.

Non-commissioned Member Subsidized Training and Education Plan (NCM STEP)

Because this position requires specialty training, the CAF will pay successful recruits to attend the diploma program at an approved Canadian college. NCM STEP students attend basic training and on-the-job training during the summer months. They receive a full-time salary including medical and dental care, as well as vacation time with full-pay in exchange for working with the CAF for a period of time. If you choose to apply to this program, you must apply both to the CAF and be accepted at the appropriate accredited College. 

For further information, please contact a Canadian Forces Health Services Recruiter:

Learn more about our Paid Education programs here.

Part time options

The role of the Canadian Forces Health Services Reserves is to provide trained personnel to support, augment and sustain Canadian Forces Health Services organizations for Canadian Armed Forces operations and training activities, while building and maintaining links between the Forces and the local community.

This position is available for part-time employment with the Primary Reserve at certain locations across Canada. Reserve Force members usually serve part time with a military unit in their community, and may serve while going to school or working at a civilian job. They are paid during their training. They are not posted or required to do a military move. However, they can volunteer to move to another base. They may also volunteer for deployment on a military mission within or outside Canada.

Medical Technicians may serve with the Royal Canadian Navy, the Canadian Army or the Royal Canadian Air Force as part of the Canadian Forces Health Services Group. They are employed to assist and support Medical Officers and Nursing Officers to treat the sick and injured in Canadian Armed Forces units and operations. When they are employed on a part-time or casual full-time basis they usually serve in a medical unit at a location within Canada.

Find a Recruiting Centre

Reserve Force members are trained to the same level as their Regular Force counterparts. They must be licensed to practice as a paramedic in their province. Once enrolled, they usually begin training with their home unit to ensure that they meet the required basic professional military standards. Following basic military training and further training to Soldier Qualification, Medical Technicians attend the Canadian Forces Health Services Training Center in Borden, Ontario to achieve the remainder of their military qualification.

If you are not a qualified civilian paramedic and do not meet all the qualifications for Medical Technician, you may be interested in a similar career as a Medical Assistant.

Reserve Force members usually serve part-time with their home unit for scheduled evenings and weekends, although they may also serve in full-time positions at some units for fixed terms, depending on the type of work that they do. They are paid 92.8% of Regular Force rates of pay, receive a reasonable benefits package and may qualify to contribute to a pension plan.