RNs Intubating??? - page 2

by nurseyperson

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My supervisor has sent my on an internet search. Anyone intubate as RNs in your units? If so, what is you policy and credentialling, competency, etc. Any info would be helpful. Thanks!!!... Read More


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    I work in a private hospital in South Africa . At night time we hardly ever have a dr. on call . If anything happens to pt. we have to phone the dr. in charge , who often lives up to 15min drive away from the hospital . If a pt. starts dev. resp problems , we as nurses must according to scope of practice "oxygenate the pt to the best of our abbility" .Thus if all we feel we are competent to do is put a mask over the pt's face , then so be it . If , however we have been trained to intubate a pt. (as all nurses who have done basic life support are ) we are compelled to intubate the pt if need be .
    I therefore think that if you have the training & there is no-one else , then by all means intubate . You must just be able to justify your own actions later . We are afterall each accountable for our own acts & ommissions .
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    I have worked in two hospitals where I was allowed to intubate. A lot of states do consider it within nursing scope of practice, however, the ACLS guidelines also call for the most experienced person in that particular skill do the honors. Usually, there is someone around that has more experience with that task than me, so I defer and direct them to the head of the bed whenever possible.
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    We are taught how to do it in ACLS and PALS because we are a small hospital and if we were to have more than one code (which has happened) someone would have to intubate the pt. But if there is someone more qualified in the room I will be the first one to step back and let them have at it. We always have RT in the building and we have an ER doc so we would most likely never have to do it.
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    I thought I heard from my acls instructor that with the new guidelines, they won't be teaching nurses to intubate anymore???
  5. 0
    Originally posted by Ayanna1172
    I thought I heard from my acls instructor that with the new guidelines, they won't be teaching nurses to intubate anymore???
    I don't think it's "ACLS guidelines", but rather a change in teaching practice. ACLS is ACLS is ACLS, but the fact is (as indicated above) that nurses usually don't intubate. In a code situation there is usually an MD present or if not then a CRNA or even an RT who has more experience intubating than a nurse.

    It's not that the AHA doesn't think that nurses shouldn't intubate. Instead, I think the thought process is that since nurses generally don't, why not focus on what they in fact do -- push meds, defibrillate, make suggestions to the new residents, etc.
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    the policy in my hospital is that acls trained nurses can only intubate if the respiratory therapist or physician is not on the unit and bagging the patient is ineffective. i would not be comfortable intubating on my own, and thank goodness r.t. and docs are only a code button away in these situations. an acls dummy is way different from a live person---to much could go wrong. teri
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    I have never heard or saw a policy anywhere about an RN getting to intubate, except on a medivac helicopter. certainly a nurse could perform the procedure well, with practice....

    there must be an underlying root somewhere why nurse's don't perform this procedure...anyone know what that root is??

    having been a paramedic 12+ years and now finally getting around to nursing school (when I finish and start working as an RN) I WILL MISS getting to intubate as it is very much a rush.
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    I work ER and we have only ACLS for entubation training. We are allowed and expected to entubate if MD isn't available. We usually have residents in the ER to do this also. I never have done this myself. I'v been there almost 2 years and only one RN has entubated a patient. There was already a code in progress and there wasn't a resident on at that time.
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    Quote from Terrie
    We are taught how to do it in ACLS and PALS because we are a small hospital and if we were to have more than one code (which has happened) someone would have to intubate the pt. But if there is someone more qualified in the room I will be the first one to step back and let them have at it. We always have RT in the building and we have an ER doc so we would most likely never have to do it.
    The reason you are taught how to is because it would not be cost effective to have seperate classes for all the different allied healthcare prof.

    J. Smith
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    as an acls instructor since 1987 (along withbls/pals/abls/etc.) i can assure you that “playing" with "fred the head” in theairway station was never to be considered being taught intubation. one of themany reasons aha courses are now course completions & not certs.


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