•  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  

Top 10 Best Watches for EMTs

Here is our shortlist of the best EMT watches. Think of this as the TL:DR. However, we invite you to read further on as we go in-depth as to why we made these selections.

This article’s purpose is to educate you about what to look for in an EMT watch.

Top 5 Men’s EMT Watches

Top 5 Women’s EMT Watches

The 10 Best Watches for EMTs and Paramedics

As an EMT, paramedic or medical first responder your main purpose is to provide emergency care to your patients. It is essential, in order to provide that care, that you have the proper equipment.

Stethoscopes, proper EMS pants, penlights, and other EMT gear are very important in ensuring that your patient has the best outcome.

One of the most important functions you provide as a prehospital technician is recording the patient’s vital signs. EMT’s and Paramedics are required to take blood pressures, monitor pulse rates, and count respirations.

What do these all have in common? Each one of these vital signs requires you to count. They all require a watch or some other means to accurately record the information.

A good watch is often overlooked. I have seen plenty of EMT’s simply use their phones. This works for recording accurate vital signs on a stable patient. But what if your patient is not stable.

Are you going to have the time to dig into your pockets and produce your phone, open the app, and turn on your stopwatch? In many emergencies, seconds count and can be the difference between a positive or negative patient outcome.

What about hygiene, you are wearing gloves, you have touched your patient. Remember! If it’s wet and sticky, and not yours. Don’t touch it. Now you are sticking your contaminated gloves into your pockets and touching your phone.

It would be much easier to glance down at a good wristwatch. When I first started my EMS career, my first station manager told me that any EMT worth their license has a watch.

How do you select a good watch? Do they have to be expensive? How durable do they have to be? How easy is it to clean? What materials should it be made of? There are a lot of considerations when selecting a good EMT watch. The purpose of this article is to educate you on selecting a timepiece suitable for the job.


EMT Watch Buying Guide for 2020

We have split our top 10 list in half. We will cover the best watches for men and women. Men and women have different morphology and while watches can work for either gender, some wrists are small or larger than others.

Best Men’s EMS Watch Reviews

Here is our list of the best EMT watches for men.

1. Casio G-Shock G-Rescue Series Men’s Watch

Casio Men's G7900A-4 G-Shock Rescue Red Digital Sport Watch

The Casio G-Shock Rescue Series Watch is arguably the most expensive watch on this list. However, it is for a good reason. This watch hits all of our marks when I am looking for an EMT watch. G-Shock watches are some of the most durable timepieces on the market.

The entire watch is encased in 50mm of resin, so it hits the unibody design. The resin is easy to clean. The watch face has a clear large display that allows for 12 or 24-hour timekeeping. The watch is water-resistant down to 200m. While you might not be doing dive rescue, if you were this watch would survive it.

The G-Shock Rescue series has an automatic backlight, so it is completely hands-free. This watch comes in a nice fire department red and is also available in EMS blue.

Specifications

   
Large Buttons & Display FormatTide & Moon DataShock Resistant
200M Water ResistantLow Temperature Resistant LCD (-20 C / -4 F)Auto EL Backlight with Afterglow
Flash Alert with multiple timer settingsTide GraphMoon Data
29 times zones (48 cities), city code display, daylight saving on/off4 Multi-function Alarms and 1 Snooze AlarmHourly Time Signal
Countdown TimerCountdown range: 24 hoursCountdown start time setting range: 1 minute to 24 hours (1-minute increments and 1-hour increments)
1/100 second stopwatch (ST1)Measuring modes: Elapsed time, split time, 1st-2nd place times5-second Auto-start
Auto Calendar (pre-programmed until the year 2099)12/24 Hour FormatsBattery: CR2025
Approx. battery life: 2 years

Pros

  • Unibody design
  • Easy to clean
  • Will survive just about anything the job can throw at it

Cons

  • Upper Limits for the price when looking for an EMT watch


2. SKMEI Men’s Sport Military Style Large Face Wrist Watch

Men's Sports Watch Military 50M Waterproof Digital LED Large Face Wrist Watch with Black Silicone Strap Simple Army Watch

The SKMEI Men’s Sport Large Face Watch is fantastic for its price. At under 15 dollars, this is a watch you won’t mind if it breaks. This is a watch that you can keep a spare. This is a unibody style watch that is easy to clean, is water-resistant, and has an easy to read large watch face.

The band is made from silicone rubber and is able to resist the daily riggers on the ambulance. The best thing I like about this watch is the large easy to ready face. You clearly get the time and the date as well as a second counter. This watch also allows for both 12 and 24-hour formats.

The water resistance is good down to 50m however the manufacture warns not to press any buttons while the watch is submerged. This watch is brilliant at night or dark areas it can be hard to read in bright sunny areas.

This is an optimal watch for an EMS provider. It is rugged enough for the job and cheap enough that you won’t be to upset if something happens to it.

Specifications

  • 12-24 Hour Format
  • Shock and Water Resistant
  • Large Watch Face
  • Silicon Rubber Watchband

Pros

  • Unibody, easy to clean
  • Easy to read display
  • Stopwatch functions

Cons

  • The display can be hard to read in sunlit areas


3. Timex Full-Size Ironman Rugged 30 Watch

Timex Men's T5K793 Ironman Rugged 30 Full-Size Black Resin Strap Watch

Ironman is a triathlon competition. And Timex’s Ironman Rugged 30 is an official watch of this competition. Why is this pertinent to an EMS watch? Well, the Ironman exposes its participants to harsh environments. Ironmen and women have to run, bike and swim. And this watch is designed to survive all of it.

This is the watch I use on the job. It is a mid-priced watch that is basically indestructible. It is water-resistant down to 100m feet. The timepiece is fully encased in the resin case and strap. It is very easy to clean. Its Indiglo backlight is nice for the night shift and not too bright.

The watch face uses large easy to read numbers and I can set it to a 24 hour time period. At under 40 dollars, this is a rugged tank of a watch that will last forever on the job.

Specifications

  • Time with 12- or 24-hour format
  • Date with MM-DD or DD.MM format
  • 3 time zones
  • Optional hourly chime
  • 100-hour chronograph with memory for 30 laps/splits
  • 24-hour countdown timer (count down and stop or repeat)
  • Occasion reminders
  • 3 daily/weekday/weekend alarms with 5-minute backup
  • Customizable mode set (Select “HIDE” for unwanted modes – they are
    removed from mode sequence)
  • INDIGLO® night-light with NIGHT-MODE® feature

Pros

  • Unibody, easy to clean
  • Large function buttons
  • Easy to use stopwatch functions

Cons

  • Sometimes hard to read without using Indiglo function


4. Casio Men’s Sport Analog Dive Watch

Casio Men's MRW200H-2B2V Classic Analog Quartz Black Watch

The Casio Men’s Sport Analog Dive Watch is another great example of a great EMS watch. For around 20 dollars you get a simple analog watch. With the dive watch, you have a large watch face with clear numbers.

This watch also immediately tells you time in 24-hour format without the need to change settings. Simple look below the numbers and you will see the military time. This watch also provides a second hand fro accurate vitals.

This is a watch that’s face glows in the dark, so even at night, it is easy to read. Granted the military numbers are not visible in the pitch dark. The case and band are resin so this watch is easy to clean.

The watch is water-resistant down to 100m. This is literally a dive watch, so getting it wet won’t be an issue. It is durable and lightweight. This is a no-frills simple watch that does its job brilliantly.

The date and time are set using the side knob. This knob could present a minor cleaning issue, but is nothing a q-tip and rubbing alcohol can not solve. If you are in the market for a classic analog watch that will withstand the riggers of the job then you should seriously consider this watch.

Specifications

  • 100m water resistance
  • Glow in the dark
  • Analog with accurate second hand
  • Resin band and watch face
  • Day/Date Display

Pros

  • Simple watch
  • Visible at night
  • Easy to read face
  • Durable and affordable

Cons

  • Military time not visible at night
  • Watch knob can present a cleaning issue


5. SKMEI Men’s Large Face Sports Watch

SKMEI Large Face Digital Watch Men’s Sports Waterproof LED Military Wristwatches Chronograph Alarm Clock (Black)

Rounding out our men’s watch list is the SKMEI Men’s Large Face Sports Watch. This is another sub 20 dollar watch. It has a large face, brilliant display, and is water-resistant.

You can set this watch to 12/24 hour time format. The best feature of this watch is how large the second counter is. The band is constructed of silicone, however, the band is separate from the watch itself, so there could be some durability issues.

I included this watch due to how large the display is. It is one of the easiest to read displays on this list. Combine this with its water resistance and shock resistance and you have a cheap watch that looks good and will be perfect for the day to day rigors of the ambulance.

Specifications

  • 50m Water resistance
  • 12/24 hours settings
  • Alarm and Calendar Functions
  • Silicone Band

Pros

  • Amazing display
  • Very cost-effective

Cons

  • The silicone band can snap easier then resin.


Best Women’s EMS Watch Reviews

Here are our selections for the best EMT watches for women providers.

6. Whimsical Watches EMT Navy Blue Leather Watch

Whimsical Watches Unisex U0620024 EMT Navy Blue Leather Watch

Whimsical Watches EMT Navy Blue Watch is a perfect gift watch. It is made in the USA and compliments any uniform. It has a second hand to keep track of vitals.

This is on this list because it is a great gifty watch. It is a great watch for work if you do not work on an ambulance. Many EMTs work inside hospitals as ER technicians. And this watch compliments a uniform nicely.

The strap is made from leather and the strap connects to the watch with a large enough gap to clean the watch effectively. The watch is water-resistant and capable of withstanding getting wet.

I would not use this watch in a prehospital setting. It is not durable enough to withstand the job. In the field, you have a good chance of snagging or smacking the watch into objects that could ruin it. However, this is a great watch to wear off duty as well.

Specifications

  • Gold Toned Stainless Steel construction
  • Italian Leather
  • Accurate Japanese Quartz Movement

Pros

  • USA Made
  • Second Hand For Vitals
  • Looks Amazing
  • Perfect Gift
  • Water-resistant
  • Compliments a Hospital Uniform

Cons

  • Might not be durable enough for on-duty EMTs
  • No 24-hour format
  • Not night visible


7. Pasnew Women’s Digital Watch

Pasnew Women Digital Watch for Women Watch Sport Watch Ladies Watch Teenagers Watch Student Watch with Alarm Light Waterproof Stopwatch Multi-Functional Wrist Watches

The Pasnew Women’s Digital Watch is a good candidate for a good cheap EMT watch. This watch hits all the marks one should look for. It is easy to read, easy to clean, and it’s cheap enough that you will not be upset if it breaks.

If it does break this watch comes with a 12-month replacement warranty. This is a great sport watch that will function well in the environments that EMS providers find themselves working in.

The watch band is made of polyurethane and the watch case is made of resin. It is able to be easily cleaned. The watch is water-resistant down to 5om. So it will withstand steady hand washing and working in the weather such as rain and snow.

Working night shift? This watch has a nice bright backlight feature.

Specifications

  • Multiple functions
  • Alarm settings
  • Waterproof
  • 12/24 hour settings

Pros

  • Great Price
  • Easy to keep clean
  • Easy to read watch
  • 12-month replacement warranty

Cons

  • Watch setup can difficult


8. Speidel Women’s Scrub Petite Watch for Medical Professionals

Speidel Women’s Black Scrub Petite Watch for Medical Professionals - Easy to Read Small Face, Luminous Hands, Silicone Band, Second Hand, Military Time for Nurses, Students in Scrub Matching Colors

Speidel Women’s Scrub Petite Watch for Medical Professionals is great for EMTs. It has a blood pressure cuff theme and is constructed with medical workers in mind.

This is a classic design with an accurate second hand. The watch also has clearly visible at night. Being that this watch is designed for medical professionals it is made from easy to clean. This watch also comes in a verity of colors for the silicone watchband.

The watch face has the time in 12 and 24-hour format as well as seconds so that you are easily able to account for vital signs. The watch is waterproof to 50m, so no need to worry about getting it wet.

Speidel is a quality product and they offer a 2-year warranty as well as a 30-day refund or exchange program.

Specifications

  • 12/24 hour time formats
  • Hands glow in the dark
  • Silicone watchband
  • Highly visible second hand
  • Water-resistant for 50m

Pros

  • Made for medical professionals
  • The second hand is very visible, nice for vitals
  • Super easy to clean
  • Engravable! Makes a great gift.

Cons

  • Luminous hands not as visible as watches with backlighting


9. Casio STR300 60lap Sport Running Watch

Casio STR300-1C Sports Watch - Black & Pink

The Casio STR300 Women’s Sport Watch is a watch built to last. This is a sub 25 dollar watch that is perfect for EMS workers. This watch was originally designed with runners in mind and has an easily viewable display.

The display features 12/24 hour time settings, a digital second counter, date and year display, and backlighting. The watch is fully constructed of resin, so it is easy to keep clean. Its ten-year battery means you do not need to worry about the watch failing you in the field.

As with most of the watches on this list, the Casio is water-resistant to 50m. This means it will withstand, rain, snow, body sweat or accidental fluid exposure. This is a good cheap watch, so breaking it is not an issue and it is easy to replace.

The one notable downside of this watch ios the button placement. Sometimes when you move your wrist you can accidentally press the buttons. The buttons are overly sensitive on this watch.

If you are into fitness then this watch provides some useful settings such as 1/100th Second Stopwatch, w/60-Lap memory, Pace Signal, and Distance Calculation. This watch is feature-packed for its price tag.

Specifications

  • 12/24 hour time formats
  • Nightlight
  • 10-year battery
  • 50m water resistance

Pros

  • Nice clear display
  • Resin construction for durability and ease of cleaning
  • Sub 25 dollar price tag, lots of features

Cons

  • Sometimes the watch buttons can be accidentally pressed by wrist movement.


10. Timex Ironman Women’s Classic 30 Watch

Timex Women's Ironman 30-Lap Digital Quartz Mid-Size Watch, Black/Gray - T5E961

Rounding out our list is the best choice in my opinion. The Timex Ironman Women’s Classic 30 Watch is the female version of the watch I wear on the job and it has everything I would look for in an EMT Watch.

This is a rugged watch designed to withstand training for the Ironman Triathalon. It is constructed of durable resin and will be able to withstand any knocks and bumps that may happen on the job.

The watch is very easy to clean with minimal nooks and crannies. The watch’s face is nice and clear. 12 and 24 hour settings, as well as digital seconds readout, is nice and easy to read at a glance. This watch is water-resistant to 100m. It will not be damaged by any sort of fluids that get on it.

Specifications

  • Time with 12- or 24-hour format
  • Date with MM-DD or DD.MM format
  • 3 time zones
  • Optional hourly chime
  • 100-hour chronograph with memory for 30 laps/splits
  • 24-hour countdown timer (count down and stop or repeat)
  • Occasion reminders
  • 3 daily/weekday/weekend alarms with 5-minute backup
  • Customizable mode set (Select “HIDE” for unwanted modes – they are
    removed from mode sequence)
  • INDIGLO® night-light with NIGHT-MODE® feature

Pros

  • Unibody, easy to clean
  • Large function buttons
  • Easy to use stopwatch functions

Cons

  • Some area of the watch are hard to clean


What Type of Watch Should I Buy?

A good EMT watch should be durable, accurate, and easy to clean. EMS providers are subjected to some of the harshest conditions of any job. You will be exposed to weather, tight spaces, and unpredictable terrain. Being an EMS worker is dangerous. And there is a high likelihood you will damage your watch.

With a few acceptions, you should stick with a good rugged and cheap work watch. This thing is gonna be on your wrist while you are moving stretchers, extracting patients from automobiles, or squeezing through tight hallways of a house.

Save the nice watch for going out, having a dedicated work watch that you won’t mind breaking or even keeping a spare of is the way to go.

Watches to Avoid

Smith & Wesson Men’s SWW-455-EMT Watch

Smith & Wesson Men's SWW-455-EMT EMT Black Nylon Strap Watch

This is an example of a watch that is marketed to EMS professionals. This is a bad choice for a number of reasons. Sure it is a Smith and Wesson EMT Watch, cool watch bro. This watch has cloth straps and velcro. This is a hygiene nightmare, it is impossible to fully clean. It is also heavy and bangs around on everything.

I made the mistake of buying this watch for work and it didn’t even last 3 months because of the tiny pins holding the strap to the watch face simply are not durable. Stick with lighter watches, preferably with the watch face and strap as one piece. This makes the watch easy to clean and not clumsy to wear on the job.

Paracord watches should also be avoided for the same reason. All the nooks and crannies catch everything. If you have ever had a patient with skin flakes then you know what I am talking about. You do not want that getting into your wristwatch strap.

Who Should Buy an EMT Watch?

These watches were selected because they will work best for an EMT or Paramedic in the field. However, they also work for any medical professional.

EMS Tasks That Require a Watch

  • Counting Respirations
  • Taking a Pulse Rate
  • Counting IV Drip Rates
  • Marking Torniquete Application Times
  • Counting Down to Pumps and Quarters

A watch is the most used, but often overlooked piece of medical equipment on the rig. Accurate vital signs are a hallmark of proper patient care. When you are transporting your patient the receiving hospital staff is going to want to know how fast or slow that person’s heart rate and respirations are.

This information is used to determine patient stability, if they can or can not administer life-saving medications, and even how the victim is responding to medical interventions. You do not want to be the responder that tells the doctor or nurse “I think their heart rate is 80”. Not only is it unprofessional but expect the staff to report you to the state and/or your company.

If you are a paramedic level provider or work in a medical control authority that allows the administration fo medication, you will need to keep accurate times of when you gave the drug.

Remember the five rights of medication administration: the right patient, the right drug, the right dose, the right route, and the right time. Accurate documentation of when a drug is given is essential.

Documentation is very important in EMS. You need to record when you got your call when you went en route to your call when you made the scene, patient contact, departure and arrival at receiving facility. All of these require accurate timekeeping.

Not only do you have to record those respirations, but you need to also record when you took the vitals. Remember, everything needs to be recorded and when these events happen is just as important as the events themselves. Even something as simple as giving patients oxygen needs to be timestamped

How to Choose a Good Watch

Purpose

The purpose of an EMT watch is simple. Provide accurate times for EMS interventions while being rugged and easy to use. This is an example of the acronym K.I.S.S. (keep it simple stupid) in action. You do not want a complicated watch.

You want a watch that you simply have to look at, and maybe press an illumination button. The only other requirement of an EMT watch is that it has a second hand or digitally displays seconds counting.

Time Format

Emergency service providers use military time or the 24-hour format. The conversion of standard 12-hour formats is simple enough. 00:00 to 1200 are the morning hours then 1 pm is 13:00. Once you use this timekeeping method for a while you get used to it.

However, having a watch that you are able to put in the military time will eliminate the confusion and make documentation easier.

Size and Weight

You do not want an overly heavy watch. You do, however, want an easy to read watch. It is important to try and strick a balance between watch face size and weight. EMS providers work long hours, and a heavy watch can lead to wrist fatigue and is also more prone to smack into things.

Watch Strap Materials

The kind of strap used to make the watch plays an important role in your purchase decision. Here, you should look for two things: quality/durability and ease of cleaning.

Metal Watchbands

Metal wristbands look great. They are durable and can withstand harsh elements. However, they are hard to keep clean. Think about any metal wristband you have seen on a watch.

Notice all of the small spaces? Those are perfect breeding grounds for bacteria. When happens if you get a blood exposure? Typical metal bands have lots of nice hiding spots for that blood. It is very hard to keep these sterile. Unless you are a watchmaker, good luck taking that band fully apart.

Non-Metallic Wristbands

This is the route you should go when selecting a watch. But, you should look for rubber-type materials. Avoid cloth or paracord wristbands, for the same reason above. Remember, your watch is a tool. Leather is acceptable as it is easy to clean like rubber and rubber-like bands.

Look for watches with bands that allow for easy cleaning. If you can find a good unibody style watch like Casio’s G-Shock, that is preferable. Unibody means that the watch face and wristband are one piece and not separated. The more pieces a watch has, the more chance it has to break or have cavities that prevent easy cleaning.

The downside of a unibody watch is if the band snaps you basically need a new watch. This is why a good cheaper watch is preferable to an expensive complicated watch.

Water Resistance

Having a water-resistant watch is very important. Think about how many times a day you will wash your hands. Before and after every patient contact. If a watch is not water-resistant then that watch will cease to function very shortly after you purchase it.

Rain and snow are common environmental factors that EMS workers find themselves in. Once again, no water resistance equals a dead watch.

Second Hand or No Second Hand?

You need a watch that gives you a digital second count or has a second hand. This is a requirement of a good EMT watch. Without a second hand or digital readout, how will you count respirations, pulse rates, or IV drip rates?

 


  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •