New grad, passed NCLEX...what steps do I need to take to become a burn nurse?

  1. Hello,

    I am a new grad looking for my first job in Illinois. I just passed NCLEX. I did my final nursing clinical rotation of 180 hours in an ICU.

    What is the career path to become a nurse in a burn unit? Do you have to be certified in burn care? Can new grads get into a burn unit right away?

    Thanks for your help..
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    About MidLifeRN2012

    Joined: Sep '05; Posts: 318; Likes: 425


  3. by   Wolf at the Door
    some can. try Parkland in Dallas Texas.
  4. by   Burn-Unit-RN
    I got hired on a burn unit as a new grad, and I love it! I worked there first as a nursing assistant, so I did have an idea of what the role of the RN would be like. As far as certifications, there are very few for burn nurses. The American Burn Associates puts out an Advanced Burn Life Support certification, but that is aimed for flight RNs and paramedics and details the initial treatment and fluid resuscitation protocols.

    Unfortunately, burn units are only typically part of large teaching hospitals within urban areas. I know nothing about Illinois, but definitely consider relocating. If you have a strong interest in burns for a particular reason, make sure you articulate that when applying for the job. If a nurse manager sees someone with a special interest, they will be more likely to hire you.

    If you cannot get hired as a new grad onto a burn unit, my suggestion would be to apply to surgical floors and get a couple years of experience under your belt. Burn nursing is a surgical specialty too as many of our pts require a trip to the OR. Those years of experience will make you a good candidate. Good luck!
  5. by   TNT_RN09
    Try integris baptist hospital in Oklahoma
  6. by   MidLifeRN2012
    Thanks guys for the tips I appreciate your insights.
  7. by   dirtyhippiegirl
    We seem to only hire new grads on the burn unit that I work on.
  8. by   hhurley
    Any advice for someone in NC? I have a son who was burned at 18 months old (chemical) and my father (heat) plus I have done wound care in LTC. I am currently a LPN with 3 years exp. and working in the LPN to RN trans. class now, graduate dec '13. I think with my personal experiences I'm being lead to burns...
  9. by   Orca
    Quote from TNT_RN09
    Try integris baptist hospital in Oklahoma
    I went on that unit during clinicals in nursing school. Impressive place.

    To clarify, it's in Oklahoma City.
  10. by   leighTX
    Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio has one of the best burn units in the country, if you don't mind a ~government job
  11. by   oscar0183
    Parkland Hospital in Dallas is the place for burns! After all, the burns formula was started there! They hire new grads and you go through an 18 week residency that has both classroom and clinical time. It's basically like another semester of nursing school, but geared towards critical care!
  12. by   zzbxdo
    You don't have to be specialized to start off new with burns. Everything you need to know you will be taught. The best thing you can do for yourself is understand the pain and psychological hardships these individuals go through. As burn RN youll deal a lot with pain management and wound care. Take some free online CEUs regarding skin breakdown management, assessments etc. I've only just got my ABLS and I've been in my BICU for 10months.