Tech's in the ER

  1. Our small rural hospital has several techs in the ER. I would like to know what role techs play in other, larger ERs. Do they start IV's, do EKG's, draw blood, pass meds? There has been some question here about what they have been trained to do in the past, and what they will be allowed to do in the future. I'd love to hear from any smaller ED's that use techs too...thanks...
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  2. 30 Comments

  3. by   BrandyBSN
    Our techs are absolutely wonderful. The entire staff at all times includes 1 doc, 3 RNs and 2 techs. Techs do all the EKGs, blood draws (as long as they dont need IVs started, or Saline Locks, then RNs have to do that), they do all of our casting, splinting, crutch training, orthostatics, vitals, collect UAs (they do not cath), they are the phone-answerers, filers, secretaries, and generally the only ones that know what the Doc is waiting on. They put all Dr. Orders into the computer, call for all the different tests we need like Xrays, ABGs, breathing treatments, Scans, etc. They clean rooms, stock supplies, and do the CPR during Codes so that the nurses can worry about the drugs and recording. At the end of the day, they do our chart checks, make sure that we charted within guidelines (every certain time period based on triage level), all the blanks are filled in and signed, and make patient appointments. Our techs are a fantastic group of individuals. All this, and they only make 8 bucks an hour. We really couldn't function without them. They bust their butts for us so that we can do what we need to do. I love our techs.
    Last edit by BrandyBSN on Sep 4, '02
  4. by   teeituptom
    Howdy yall
    from deep in the heat of texas


    Techs are great, aours play pretty much the same role as they do in brandys ER, so I wont reiterate. The thing to remember is that techs are there to assist not replace. Therefore you as a nurse need to be fully trained in all the things techs can do, splinting, setting up sterile trays, etc. Some of the new nurses comeing into our ER, say the tech will do that, thats his or her job, I dont need to know how to do this. And what if you have a night where your techs call in and they are not replaced, then what are you going to do. That has happened to us on occasion and some of these new nurse are clueless on how to properly apply a splint. Oh well, this to shall come to pass.



    doo wah ditty
  5. by   AlaskanRN
    I fully agree Tom...our nurse manager expects us to know how to do every thing from a simple splint to an ABG...being a small rural hospital, (9 bed ER) we are pretty much full service.

    We don't always have a tech. Sometimes it will be the RN and an LPN, and nights it's just the RN and the Doc. RN's are expected to stock rooms and carts, put in orders, do breathing treatments, draw blood, ABG's, EKG's, set up trays, transport pts to the floor etc...etc...

    It's not an expectation that the tech's will do any/all of these things and the RN is not responsible for them, I was just curious to know the tech's role in other ER's.

    Thanks for the info, it's appreciated...
  6. by   dbhsurf
    Our tech's have a wide range of skills, Some of them are EMT's or medic's or have been in the past, so they draw blood, start IV's, ekg's. Then there are some that are nursing students and we have trained them to draw blood and start IV's, so for our ER it has depended on their experience.
    Deb
  7. by   dbhsurf
    Our tech's have a wide range of skills, Some of them are EMT's or medic's or have been in the past, so they draw blood, start IV's, ekg's. Then there are some that are nursing students and we have trained them to draw blood and start IV's, so for our ER it has depended on their experience. We coukld not survive without our Tech's.
    Deb
  8. by   debbyed
    Our Tech's are a vital part of out ER team. During orientation they are trained to start Medlocks, draw labs, do Ekg's as well as being taught basic Ekg class to become monitor certified. They transport all our PCU admits but must have a nurse with them to transport CCu patients. They do all our casting and splinting as well as patient teaching regarding crutches, walkers etc.

    The nights we are short or completely missing our techs are horrible. Many times the hospital will replace them with floor RN's but our techs are so speciality trained that it still puts a big dent in patient care.

    Personally I think they are the most under appreciated and underpaid member of our team.
  9. by   teeituptom
    Howdy yall
    from deep in the heat of texas


    Hey alaskan RN one of our techs left a few weeks ago to go to alaska with his wife, his name is brad if you see him hes a good tech, and tell him hi for me


    doo wah ditty
  10. by   AlaskanRN
    Will do Tom...What part of Alaska is he coming to?...it's a big state you know...
  11. by   teeituptom
    Howdy yall
    from deep in the heat of texas


    I forget where he said he was going up there, He said there wasnt a golf course nearby though. So I kinda lost interest.
    Ask for directions antwhere and if its near a golf course I can tell how to get there





    doo wah ditty
  12. by   ernurse728
    WE have PCT's in our ED....they start IV's, draw blood, collect UA's, put in Foley's, do vital signs, EKG's, place pt's on monitor's, put orders in the computer, answer phones if the secretary is busy....they are a big help. We usually have a tech for every 6-8 pt's.
  13. by   AlaskanRN
    ernurse728...what's a PCT?
  14. by   ERNurse752
    I'm going to guess it stands for Patient Care Tech, but I could be wrong.

    Techs in my ER do about the same as listed above, depending on their experience, ie, none, EMT, EMT-P, SN, etc...out techs don't do secretarial duties though. Some of them are cross-trained to be both techs and secretaries, but they're one or the other specifically on any given night.

    If that makes sense...I'm delirious after the a** pounding of last night!

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