Certifications/training for a new ER nurse

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    I know there are probably several threads about something similar to this but I feel mine is different. I just started in the ER 2 months ago and trying to figure out what to do to become a good ER nurse. My dream is to eventually become a trauma nurse but I know I need to start at the beginning. I have ACLS/PALS and CPR and was told to wait on getting TNCC. I have debated going and getting my EMT basic to get more experience. So many options so confused what to do lol.
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  3. 10 Comments so far...

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    Huh- I graduated with several nurses who started in ERs and all had their TNCC within 2-3 months... Guess its a facility policy or something. Sounds like you are on the right track though. Getting your EMT couldn't hurt, and it'll give you a different perspective on the care that happens BEFORE they get to you...
    TheSquire likes this.
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    I was just a bit confused on your post. Are you a ER nurse currently? If so then all the classes you listed are a must, why they are having you wait to take the TNCC I am not sure. A EMT-B can only do certain stuff, they are more like 1st responders, but important none the less. As a EMT-I you will be doing more invasive things, starting a IV, you can do a combi-tube, 12 lead, EJ, etc. BUT I wanted to add that the roles in the ER versus in the street per say are different and you might have a hard time remembering when you are in the ER unless you have a different policy you cannot do combi-tube or EJ's so your scope kinda shifts based on where you are at. Either place I am sure you will do great. CONGRATS om your ER job! I am a EMT-I who is in nursing school and want to do ER nursing. I love the pace and the different assignments you have every shift.

    Pink
    Last edit by PinkRocksLikeMe on Aug 30, '11 : Reason: Spelling Error
  6. 0
    Quote from PinkRocksLikeMe
    ...BUT I wanted to add that the roles in the ER versus in the street per say are different and you might have a hard time remembering when you are in the ER...
    Hmmm, good point. I didn't think of that.
    If you already have a job as an ER nurse, getting your EMT may just confuse you.
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    If you're already working as an ED nurse, I wouldn't get the EMT cert.
    Not because it's not a valid cert. but because of the reason already mentioned - the focus of EMT is different from ER.

    Give yourself atleast 6 months before you try the TNCC.
    Wait a while (atleast 1-2 years) before you try for the CEN.

    cheers,
    MassED likes this.
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    all those certs really do not tell you how to do your job. They can be confusing to new nurses. I recommend you do not take EMT training, as it is designed for first responders in the field. In the ER you will do things differently. Just concentrate on learning your job and take whatever certs are required for now. Later you will have a better idea of what is needed and what is nice to know.
    MassED likes this.
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    Even if you decide to not pursue EMT-B, I would recommend riding along with your local EMS services, if permitted. It tends to give ER nurses a better perspective on how things go in the field, and why some things might not get done prior to EMS arrival at the hospital.
    Crux1024 likes this.
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    I'm starting in the ER in a few weeks and was told that i would need to be there a year to get my TNCC. I guess every place is different. I would think it would be worth it to just hang out and soak in as much as possible for the next 6 months and then persue some certifications.
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    Thank yall for your comments. To help clarify I am an ER nurse, started it about 2 months ago. The main reason I thought about EMT-B while being an ER nurse would be to help give me more trauma experience for when I want to become a trauma nurse later. I did a ride along with our local EMS and had fun doing it with them. I have bought a few books to read to try and help me learn.

    I guess part of it is I am just super eager/excited that I am in the ER as this is where I wanted to be since before nursing school. I feel comfortable being in this type of enviroment where we don't know whats coming through the door and not every day is the same.
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    Most level 1 "trauma" nurses have critical care experience (TICU) as well as ED experience. Can you cross-train to the ICU where you work?

    We require ACLS, BLS, PALS right away and TNCC within a year in our dept.

    I would talk to your educator and make sure they know you would like to be exposed to more trauma and see if you can shadow a seasoned trauma nurse or attend conferences and educations to make you more qualified and desirable when an opening does come up.


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