ACLS question and help.

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    Hi, I have been out of nursing for 4 yrs and am now back working since my dh was laid off. The hospital I work for is requires all nurses to be ACLS certified. I have been a med/surg RN for 16 yrs, a nurse 20 yrs but I'm totally freaking out over this!! I have heard it's not a fun thing to go through. Any advice?

    Also, I heard the new guidelines were updated in 2006, is this true? I can't seem to find the current book that I will need. Everything is 2005 guidelines. I compare notes from various books and online materials and it's all different. I also heard my employer isn't paying for the course. I really hope that isn't true. It's over 200!

    Thanks for any help. I'm happy to have found this forum!

    Kelly
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  3. 15 Comments so far...

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    yes it is$285 in ny for acls
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    Quote from winny103
    yes it is$285 in ny for acls
    Yes, I know it's so expensive. Do you know what book I need? There are so many books out there!
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    AHA 2006 is most current- got mine for ~$30 with the CD ( which is great and we had to bring pretest on first day). Take some time to review rythmns (CD has great tutorials), and really familiarize yourself with the algorythmns-the book came with algorythmn cards which were a great study tool. The people that had to repeat or retest had come in expecting to be taught and did not know the material. It is detailed material but they want people to pass and will help you the first day.We were able to practice megacode twice before actual one. I am still in RN school and passed it, you definitely can do it!

    book link-great,quick delivey
    http://www.emergencystuff.com/801088.html
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    The current ACLS is the 2005 edition, it was implemented in 2006. Dont freak out, the ACLS class format is much more user friendly than 15 years ago when we had Mega-Codes and they really didnt want to just pass you. There is a series of videos with skills demonstration, but if you study the pre-study packet and read the book, you cant fail. Just remember, just because you pass the course does not make you a competent Provider. As a Nurse you have to stay current, and review your algorithms frequently, know your equipment where you actually work, and when an emergency happens, YOU will mae a difference! I am frequently in the field running a full Cardiac Arrest code with my Paramedic partner and I still review my algorithms routinely so its fresh in my head. Oh yah, dont ever let someone tell you ACLS is not important for a Nurse on Med/Surg, that is actually where you will be most likely to be on your own doing interventions before the Doctor arrives.:wink2:
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    During nursing school our instructors told us to never be afraid nor too proud to pull out the little ACLS ring-binder booklet of algorithms during a code and check for things you might have missed. It IS important to know the algorithms and obviously the rhythms as well, however when things get chaotic you will forget or miss something.. If you feel like you've tried everything, pull out that book and look! You may find something you forgot that may make the difference for that patient.
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    first of all, relax. acls is not the nail-biter that it was 15 or 20 years ago. if you read the provider manual before class, pay attention during the class, and ask questions if something is not clear, you should have no trouble. most, if not all instructors want you to do well and will do all that they can to ensure that you do.

    although there are many of the “pass acls” texts available, the advanced cardiovascular life support provider manual is the only text that you really need, and contains all of information required to successfully complete the course.

    the 2005 american heart association guidelines for cardiopulmonary resuscitation and emergency cardiovascular care are also available as a free download. these were the basis for the material contained in the provider manual and you might find them interesting as well, although there is nothing in here that you need to know for the class which is not included in the provider manual.

    if you are going to be working in a setting where you will be expected to perform basic acls interventions prior to the arrival of the resuscitation team, then the handbook of emergency cardiovascular care for healthcare providers 2008 is well worth the investment as it not only contains all of the algorithms, it also provides information on all of the acls medications as well.

    you will also need to have a basic understand of basic ekg interpretation. if you are not comfortable reading basic ekg strips the following sites might be helpful.
    hope this information was helpful.
    Faith213, SweetOldWorld, GOMER42, and 2 others like this.
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    You guys rock, thanks!! That was the book I was looking at but wasn't sure. I will order it in a few minutes.

    Yeah, I do realize I need to keep on top of the algorithms. With working in a small hospital where the tele unit is on the med surg unit, these people can be quite ill for med/surg standards.
    certainly not proud to pull out any cheat cards during an actual code. I wish I could use them during the ACLS.:chuckle It's encouraging to know they aren't out to get you and fail you like they were years ago.
    I have been so obessed with this class, that last night I woke up with the algorithm for PEA running though my head.

    Oh, EKG stuff for certain I will study. I'm set to take a EKG class next week.

    Once again thanks. I'm going to enjoy posting here.
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    I took and passed the ACLS class this year, and the thing my instructors stressed the most was GOOD QUALITY CPR. They kept telling me, it's ok to take a step back, look at the cheat sheet and think as long as we had GOOD QUALITY CPR.

    And yes, I freaked out too, but it wasn't bad at all!
  12. 0
    Quote from ksreuter
    I took and passed the ACLS class this year, and the thing my instructors stressed the most was GOOD QUALITY CPR. They kept telling me, it's ok to take a step back, look at the cheat sheet and think as long as we had GOOD QUALITY CPR.

    And yes, I freaked out too, but it wasn't bad at all!
    Thanks I will remember that about the CPR. You can use a cheat sheet? I thought you had to memorize every last word???


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