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Paramedic Cruise Ship Jobs

As a cruise ship paramedic, you will have the opportunity to practice your profession and apply your medical knowledge as part of the shipboard medical department.

Within this diverse and welcoming environment, you will deliver the highest standard of patient care in a truly unique environment. 

As part of a medical department which prides itself on delivering high quality, patient-centric healthcare, you will make full use of your medical skills as you treat both guests and crew members, often in time-sensitive situations. 

Each ship has a modern, well equipped medical centre which accommodates a skilled team of healthcare professionals.

Responsibilities of a Cruise Ship Paramedic

  • Provide routine and emergency care to guests and crew members.
  • Acting as the ship’s first responders when it comes to healthcare, assess and treat patients on scene before transferring them to the shipboard medical centre for further care. 
  • All cruise ship paramedics must be comfortable with practicing autonomously under the authority of doctors, assessing patients and providing specialist treatment and advice to patients with specific medical needs.
  • Work closely with ship nurses and doctors in supporting patients attending daily walk-in clinics. 
  • Learn and practice a range of technical skills, such as x-ray acquisition, and perform laboratory tests and other procedures. 
  • Provide high levels of customer service while maintaining a professional, dignified, assertive, and polite manner at all times. 
  • Participate in drills, audits, inspections, and mandatory training. 

Shifts and contracts

During the day, you will hold two three-hour clinics, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. You will spend the remainder of your time on call. 

Typically, cruise ship paramedics work on a four-month contract. At the end of each four months, you will take two months off before heading back out to sea to begin a new contract.

It is worth noting that you must be willing to commit to a minimum of two contracts.  

Onboarding Process

After securing your position, You will need to complete a pre-boarding process. This will include all ship safety requirements. 

You will be flown from your nearest international airport to an airport close to where the ship is docked. You'll then make your way to the port and board your new home.

Your position will be confirmed the day you join the vessel. Please note, a start date might not be available even after you are ready to board, depending on allocated vacancies to new medical staff. 

Once aboard, you’ll be shown around the shipboard medical centre and brought up to speed on how to operate any medical equipment with which you are unfamiliar. 


  • Hold a valid accredited ALS/ACLS certificate prior to joining any vessel 
  • Hold a valid passport 
  • Obtain a United States C1/D Visa (not applicable for US and Canadian citizens) 
  • Hold an Advanced Life Support Paramedic Qualification (or equivalent)
  • Be registered and licensed with an appropriate governmental or national regulatory body. 
  • Have at least three years’ postgraduate clinical experience in paramedicine, emergency medicine or other acute care settings, and your most recent role should be in a clinical setting. 
  • Be fluent in English, both conversational and technical - Mandarin and/or Japanese are also desirable 
  • Be computer literate and proficient in using Microsoft Windows 7 (or higher) and Microsoft Office programmes 
  • Have experience using electronic health records (preferable) 
  • Have exceptional interpersonal, customer services and communication skills 
  • Commit to completing at least two four-month contracts within twelve months 

Why work as a cruise ship paramedic?

Working as a cruise ship paramedic is an exciting and richly rewarding role that requires you to operate in a small team, giving you more autonomy and responsibility than you may have in other healthcare settings.

You will be required to treat patients with an array of conditions, meaning every day is different and allows you to improve your practice as you work. Expect far more hands-on and intimate interaction with your patients. 

For more information about daily life and the pros and cons of working on a cruise ship, read our ‘life on a cruise ship’ guide. 


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