I want to be a flight nurse, looking for advice
- 0Mar 27, '09 by cjthegreatHello everybody. I need a little career advice. I would like to become a flight nurse some day. I have been a paramedic for six years. Four years spent on the ambulance and two years spent in the ER as a tech. Currently I am not working as I am finishing my bachelor's in nursing. Initially I wanted to start in the ER as a new grad and then later work in the ICU. However, I have been job searching since January and am starting to realize I might have a hard time getting my first choice. I still have a lot of time to find a job, I don't license until August, but I have been talking to a lot of nurse recruiters in several different states and many places aren't hiring or aren't hiring in the ER or aren't hiring new grads into the ER at this time. The closest I have come to a potential job offer is in a Burn ICU. Is that unit too specialized to get my ICU experience? Would I be better off by being patient and waiting for an ER or MICU position to open up? I don't necessarily want to jump at the first job I find, but the lack of options is quite frustrating. Any advice would be appreciated!! Thanks!
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- 0Mar 28, '09 by Honnête et SérieuxNo, it's not too specialized.
I personally suggest that you skip out entirely on an ED position, especially since you worked as a paramedic. I was hired as a flight nurse with zero ED experience, and I was also a paramedic for six years prior. My speciality was adult CT-ICU, and we hired nurses from the burn ICU.
As long as you get exposure to high alert medications (pressors), and invasive monitoring (art lines, Swans), that should help you out.
- 0Mar 28, '09 by Medic09+1
Pretty much any ICU or CCU is good. And you can often move from one to the other. ED won't really give you much for a flight job, especially since the nurse has to bring nursing skills and experience to the mix. You've already got prehospital experience; the ICU stuff is what you'll need. Go ahead and start in Burns, you'll learn lots about fluid and electrolyte management, pain management, blood pressure and respiratory. All of it will serve you well later, especially if you end up doing a lot of critical flights.