Just got a full time position as a cardiac monitor tech at one of the local hospitals and I was just wondering if it's a good way to 'break' into telemetry/cardiac nursing.
Many of the RNs in the same floor agree that it's the right foot in the door.
Anyway, I would love to have some other feedback and if any of you tele nurses started out this way. Specifically, the pros- (what you loved) and cons- (what you hated) about being a monitor tech and if you have any tips in becoming a great one!
I haven't used my clinical skills in months and I'm just afraid that I will lose much of those skills. On the brightside, being a tech will give me more insight and experience in reading strips and getting familiar with the different treatment modalities that come with every type of arrhythmia.
Thanks and much appreciated.
May 2, '13
Sorry to say I didn't start out this way, but several of my colleagues did. You'll definitely have the advantage of being able to read the rhythms without any problems, and that is half the battle. Good luck!
May 2, '13
Yes indeed! I think it also shows initiative which employers love. I current work in our ICU as a nurse tech with previous cna experience. With my current job, we have our own monitors to watch, so the hospital paid to train us in cardiac monitoring. Funny thing was, I was going to take this class for my own benefit of learning rhythms for free before I got the ICU job and they paid me to go! Also, I accepted a RN position in a Cardiac ICU and I believe that also aided me into getting that position.
May 2, '13
1. Satisfaction in being able to identify rhythms.
2. It will help you in nursing school.
3. Looks great on a resume
4. Being able to identify subtle changes in the early stages and notifying the RN so interventions can be established.
1. Respiratory codes. Their rhythms will remain consistent and the only way you will know it was a resp. Code is if the nurse calls you or your charge nurse alerts you and tells you to print a strip. All ICU nurses carrier a pager and they get paged if a code happens.
2. Running a code strip during the time you need to print rhythms for your other 30+ pts can delay you a bit. Especially if the 2nd printer is broken.
3. Some patients rhythm will make your heart stop even if it doesn't make theirs!
4. Some rhythms are not textbook nor pretty, so always get a second pair of eyes to look at it if you are not sure what it could be.
5. PAPER, so much paper prints out lol. By the end of the shift, you feel like you need to go plant a couple of trees to make up for the amount of paper we go through.
Nov 17, '13
You mentioned your clinical skills: are you already an RN? If so, I hate to say it, I'd find a new job ASAP. Monitor teching is great while you're in nursing school but not if you've already passed your boards and you're killing time waiting for an RN job. It is NOT half the job -- even on a heavy cardiac floor the rhythms are 1/4 of the job at best. You'd be better off being a CNA (unless they make less money, lol). Though best would be to get an RN job on a floor/facility that's not your ideal, just to get yourself working.