Flight nursing quesiton.

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    This post is to inquire as to the best route to become a flight nurse. A little about myself. I graduated college 2 years ago with a degree in criminology and investigations and have so far been unable to find employment above the level of municipality police officer. I am looking at going back to school for a 2 year program to get my RN. I recently found out about flight nurses and I must say this new information is very exciting to me!

    My first question is this. Will it matter that I have a 2 year nursing degree as opposed to a 4 year degree?

    Last question, I am in the national guard as a military police officer and my enlistment is coming to an end. I do have the option of reenlisting as a flight medic, would this help my chances any? If I do not take the military route what is the best way for me to earn a slot as a flight medic?

    Thanks for any input

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  3. 4 Comments so far...

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    Not quite sure whether your question is in reference to flight nursing or flight paramedic?
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    Flight nursing. I'm not sure why I put flight medic in the last paragraph. But would having an RN help with being a flight paramedic as well?
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    All flight programs require ER/ICU experience, most places are a minimum of 2-3 years. If you are also certified as a paramedic im sure that would help. Some states require you to be cross trained as a paramedic if you are a flight nurse. Typical job postings like I said require minimum 2-3 years of ICU/ER experience, ACLS, PALS, NRP, ITLS/TNCC and would like it if you had your CCRN or CFRN. Hope this helps..
    Also be careful if you are a big person, if you do rotor wing you usually have to be under 6 foot 2 and 210 lbs. Most fixed wing air ambulance transport jobs don't have a height or weight requirement.
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    If you can re-enlist as a flight medic and use the military as an aid in supporting your education towards your RN degree, that might be worth looking into. This could possibly allow you to gain experience in the flight environment while working towards your degree. Keep in mind though, even though you would have experience as a military flight medic, you would still have to complete the typical requirements of a candidate for flight nursing as mentioned above by SteelCity_RN if your intentions were indeed to become a flight nurse.
    This industry (flight medicine) is historically difficult to break into and requires patience and commitment. That said, any experience you can get in the flight medicine environment could help (rotor-wing over fixed-wing). However, be skeptical of anyone who "assures" you of a job following a certain course..
    In response to your question about BSN versus ADN (the bachelor's degree versus the associate degree), I don't believe there would be any advantage of one over the other at this point unless you were interested in teaching in the formal or institutional setting or moving into an administrative flight position.
    The course for becoming a flight nurse would take several years -- the course for becoming a civilian flight medic would take several years... Therefore, I'd also recommend, as an alternative maybe, doing some research and pointing yourself in one direction or the other as the commitment for both is a very dedicated path. Some programs like mine do require their RN's to have their paramedic certificate also but we dual-certified RN/PM's seldom come with the experience that the flight medics bring to the table and it's a very complimentary and mutually respectful relationship between flight nurses and flight medics. Therefore, alternatively, your idea of obtaining medic training would be valuable once you were at the point of applying as a flight nurse... I hope I haven't thoroughly confused you.. There is no clear answer other than the one you choose.
    Either way, good luck and keep your head up.
    Also, thank you for your service in our national guard!
    Last edit by FLTRN70 on Jul 22, '10 : Reason: Additional


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