|For the in-game medical personnel services, see Paramedics.|
The Paramedic side-mission can be toggled on or off when driving the Ambulance in Grand Theft Auto III, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, Grand Theft Auto Advance, Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories, Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories and Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars.
The Paramedic side mission involves the player locating, picking up and delivering patients to the hospital within a time limit. The hospital is the closest one to where the player began the side mission. Each new level adds one new patient to collect. After completing level twelve (level fifteen in GTA Vice City Stories), the player is rewarded. The Ambulance can carry up to three patients at one time (except GTA Advance where the number of passengers is unlimited).
The side mission can be failed by ending the side mission, leaving or destroying the Ambulance, or by killing one patient, which can occur after numerous bumps (which hurts the patient) or running over patients. Failing the paramedic side mission results in the player having to start from the first level, except in GTA Vice City Stories and GTA Advance, where the player can resume from the last checkpoint.
In GTA III, a level has to be completed in order for the "patients rescued" stat be updated. Not completing the level means no update to the stat even though patients are actually rescued.
In GTA Vice City Stories, there is a checkpoint at the end of levels 5 and 10. In GTA Advance - after each level. If the checkpoint has been passed but the mission is failed, the mission can be resumed from the checkpoint.
However, this side-mission returns in GTA: Chinatown Wars. Here, unlike previous titles, just one patient can be carried by the ambulance. The missions are divided by 5 waves, each with two to four patients to be collected. To complete one mission, the player must complete the 5 waves without quitting or failing. A new feature has also been introduced in Chinatown Wars. Now, while carring a patient, if the player bumps the ambulance too much, the patient can suffer a heart failure. To reanimate them, in the NDS or iOS/Android version, the player must keep pressing the stylus in the touch screen, or by pressing the L and R buttons repeatedly on the PSP version. To achieve 100%, just one mission must be completed (5 waves, bronze medal), to acquire the infinite sprint, five missions must be completed (25 waves, gold medal).
- Health Pickup Delivered to Hideouts - Rescue 43 Patients
- Adrenaline Pill Pickup Delivered to Hideouts - Rescue 78 Patients
- Infinite Sprint - Complete Level 12
- Infinite Sprint - Complete Level 12
- Health Delivered to Hideouts - Rescue 35 Patients
- Infinite Sprint - Complete Level 12
- Max. Health Increases to Maximum - Complete Level 12
- Infinite Sprint - Complete Level 12 (Level 9 in Mobile version)
- Infinite Sprint - Complete Level 15
- Infinite Sprint - Complete 5 Missions (25 waves, gold medal)
- Using the Ambulance's normal brakes is actually not recommended for this mission. Since the vehicle might automatically go into reverse after being stopped completely you can accidentally back over and kill a patient that is running up behind the Ambulance. To prevent this, use the normal brakes just to slow down, and then the handbrake to stop completely. Although watch it during the rain as handbraking may make the ambulance skid, which can run over the victim.
- Removing all the doors from the Ambulance before you start the mission allows the patients to enter the car much faster than if they would have to open and close the doors themselves.
- Be wary of old people, some of them move much slower than the other patients so parking up further away from them can waste precious time.
- In Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas the easiest way to complete this mission is to start it in either Fort Carson or Angel Pine, as they are small towns with a hospital so when picking up patients the hospital will be near, and the patients will usually be in close proximity to each other. However, the time allotted to pick up patients will be correspondingly less.
- A second option will be San Fierro (San Andreas) since the city is the smallest without any convoluted streets and avenues. Pick up the farthest patients first to get the best available time. The time allotted is pretty generous in this city.
- Ambulances are not immune to wanted levels, so one must be careful not to hit police vehicles, or run over someone in view of the police, during the mission.
- In Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories, the player can offload patients at any location, by performing a drive-by in either direction. If used in the proximity of a police officer or patient, it can give the player a one star wanted level, or kill the patient.
- In Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories, there is a trick that causes patients to get out of the ambulance, freeing up a space for another patient, while still being registered as picked up. This trick can be used to pick up every patient in the current level without needing to drop them off. When picking up a patient, simply press triangle to get out of the ambulance at the same time the patient is opening the doors to get in, then immediately get back into the ambulance while holding X to accelerate. The patient will exit the ambulance immediately after getting in, and as long as you immediately accelerate away, their blue blip will be removed from the radar while still being registered as picked up. Warning: You still cannot run over a patient even after they get out of the ambulance and are removed from the radar. This trick can be executed with any passenger seat of the ambulance, but the back doors work the best as you can easily see exactly when a patient is about to get in. Make sure your ambulance doors are not missing or hanging open as this messes up the timing. You can always find a replacement ambulance at the hospital dropoff.
- In GTA III the side-mission is harder than in any other 3D Universe games. The Ambulance seems to be very big and very unstable when cornering (the player has to use the brakes almost at every corner). Also, the lack of the city map makes planning the route, especially in higher levels, an impossibility. This makes some pick ups a wild guess and completing the mission based on luck of the draw.
- It is advised to complete the mission early in GTA III, as some areas will be dangerous to enter during the game's progression. Certain gangs will become hostile towards the player; namely the Triads after completing Trial By Fire or The Pick-Up, the Colombian Cartel when Staunton Island is unlocked, the Mafia after Sayonara Salvatore, the Diablos after Uzi Rider, and the Yardies after Kingdom Come.
- Always keep the siren on during the whole mission. Cars will move to the side of the road which allows you to keep moving without stopping or risk injuring the patients. Be careful though as cops will not move out of the way.
- The time allotted to the player after picking up patients is different between the games. GTA III and GTA: VC is based on the farthest away patient, so the time bonus given when picking up a patient is the same. This means it does not matter going far away or close as the time bonus is the same. This means for these two games, it is recommended to pick up close by patients first in order to generate enough time for later. GTA: SA however, is totally different. The time bonus given is based on how close or how far the patient is in relation to the hospital. This means close by patients may only offer 10 seconds in bonus, while far away patients will offer as much 45 seconds. This means the strategy from the two previous games will not work. Rather, the player must travel to the farthest patients first in order to generate enough time for later.
- In Grand Theft Auto: Vice City and Grand Theft Auto III, You make a cop pull the front door passenger out if you have a wanted level. Once the cop opens the door, you will have to accelarate so the cop doesn't bust you. the patient will still be registered as picked up. In Vice City, all people flee the Ambulance once a cop pulls the front passenger out.
- In GTA San Andreas, due to a glitch, two patients may sometimes spawn inside of each other while standing on the sidewalk. However, if the player drives the ambulance up to them, they may pop out of each other and enter the ambulance like normal.
- In GTA San Andreas, if you roll the ambulance onto its side for a period of time all patients will get out and no longer need to go to the hospital, when the ambulance rights itself you can carry on with the mission.
- In GTA San Andreas for iOS, if you start the mission near the All Saints Hospital in Los Santos, it will be impossible to complete it farther than level 10, because the game will crash during level 10 or 11. Version 1.02.
- On rare occasions in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City and Grand Theft Auto III, patients may spawn in a location where they can't reach you such as the interior of a Well Stacked Pizza, in the ruins of the Haitian's destroyed warehouse or even below the pavement and may appear stuck inside a wall.