Critical Care, that bad?

  1. 0
    I will be a student nurse in about a year.

    I want ICU and ER experience so that I can become a Anesthetist later on

    My question is (prob a stupid question) how stressful is it working in ICU and ER?

    I just wanted to know about others' personal experiences.

    Is this something you get used to overtime? I especially would like to hear from those that have mental impairments and how they manage their emotions/lives while working in critical care setting.

    Thanks so much.

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  2. 9 Comments...

  3. 0
    Also, I forgot, what is the pay for working in ER or ICU in Connecticut?

    And....can you start out working in ICU or ER when you first begin nursing , or do you need some other type of experience before you begin working in ICU?
  4. 5
    Worry about finishing nursing school and passing the NCLEX-RN first.
  5. 1
    Make sure the CRNA schools you are interested in would accept ER experience. Some schools insist on ICU.

    ICU is very stressful. I got into it via a new grad critical care internship where they moved us through all 4 ICUs in our facility. If you hope to do something similar, work very hard in nursing school and tune out anyone who says grades don't matter. They very likely will matter if you are going for a competitive new grad program.

    Good luck.
    turnforthenurseRN likes this.
  6. 0
    Thank you Horseshoe for your response.

    I'm nervous because I don't think I can handle it. I guess time will tell.
  7. 0
    Yes, ER and ICU can be very stressful environments, but the upside is you almost never get bored. Really anywhere in the hospital/LTC can be stressful though. What do you mean by "mental impairments"?
  8. 0
    For the record: you are in a great place to start thinking about where you want to work, about 90% of my nursing class already had a job about three months before they graduated. Keep in mind that anesthesia is as stressful, if not more, than an ICU pt. CRNAs are required to have ICU experience so they are not only used to critically ill patients, but also because they need to have experience with titrating vasoactive drugs and vents. I have done ER and ICU and they are both stressful for their own and very different reasons. Almost ALL CRNA programs do not consider ER experience for this reason. ER nurses rarely get much experience titrating multiple gtts at the same time, and when they do, it is usually an experienced former ICU RN that is willing to suggest doing so in the ER.
  9. 0
    If you think you couldn't handle the stress of working in ICU, anesthesia is possibly not the specialty to be going for... best way to see is to shadow staff in both areas.
  10. 0
    Quote from Horseshoe
    Make sure the CRNA schools you are interested in would accept ER experience. Some schools insist on ICU.

    ICU is very stressful. I got into it via a new grad critical care internship where they moved us through all 4 ICUs in our facility. If you hope to do something similar, work very hard in nursing school and tune out anyone who says grades don't matter. They very likely will matter if you are going for a competitive new grad program.

    Good luck.
    And only ICU. PACU can be considered critical care experience and I know some schools will accept PACU experience for admission to their CRNA program, but I also know a lot of schools do not.

    And yes, ICU can be very stressful. At the same time it can be very rewarding, however.
  11. 0
    thanks everyone for your responses. And by mental impairments I mean psychiatric illness. Thats the great thing about nursing there are many areas you can choose. Im pretty motivated to succeed and determined. Whereas, in the past, I was less hopeful about my future.


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