Air Force Nursing vs. Civilian

  1. 0 Hello, I would like to know the opinions of those who have been employed in nursing both in the Air Force and as a civilian.

    Which did you prefer and why? Please feel free to emphasize things such as the attitudes of those with whom you have worked.

    Thanks!
    Tara
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  3. Visit  TaraSC} profile page

    About TaraSC

    From 'Texas'; 37 Years Old; Joined Jul '03; Posts: 85; Likes: 1.

    17 Comments so far...

  4. Visit  Omegaqueen112} profile page
    0
    blue
    hi tara

    i too, asked the same questions also only thing i did it via the navy for one, with the exception of being away from your family when you are accepted into the program , is the benefits are a little better more vacation time (to up to a month ! ) career advance ment traveling the world, and the scholarship program is pretty decent when i get my acceptance letter i would get up to 5,000 paid tutiton until graduation and $500 amonth + for living expenses. i would strongly suggest if you are intersted contact your local air force recriuter to find out more and if you are intersted, start training now for boot camp! i heard its no joke ! :roll best of luck to u in your future endeveours! let me know how it turns out!
  5. Visit  heatherbless} profile page
    0
    You do not have to go to boot camp if you become commissioned as an officer/RN....you just go to an officer course and learn about customs, military/officer bearing,etc.

    Lastly, Tara--the military is not for you based on some of your previous posts--there are a lot of people in the military that are old to you/
    work on your knowledge base first and then maybe-you might be right for the military.

    hty/
  6. Visit  TaraSC} profile page
    0
    Thanks for your post Omegaqueen112. I have looked into the Navy as well as the Air force. I've talked to an Air Force recruiter already about nursing and their entrance requirements. I liked the Navy's NCP, but I'm more partial to the AF in general since I served 4 years enlisted already and enjoyed it for the most part.

    I was really wanting to hear from some who have worked in both the Air Force and private sector as a nurse so that I can compare and contrast the two. I realize that there are many, many civilian jobs and wonder why one would choose the AF aside from some of the obvious benefits.

    As for Heatherbless' comment, that's completely unwarranted since it seems that's she's following me around and PMing me to make useless comments--not knowing anything about me.

    Thanks!
  7. Visit  Omegaqueen112} profile page
    0
    Hi Tara !

    Nevermind the naysayers follow your heart if you want to be in the air force , then do it! think about the options you have a young child like me and 6-8 weeks (well at least for me) is a long time to be away for your child! ask the airforce recruiter or see if you can talk to anurse face to face and decide for yourself ! I wish u luck let me know how it turns out!:
  8. Visit  heatherbless} profile page
    0
    Since I have been an AF officer...I think I have the age and experience. As far as following you around, this is the first post I ever PM'ed you on. And with your attitiude, it is maam to you-my dear enlisted one.

    hty/
  9. Visit  TaraSC} profile page
    0
    Omegaqueen112,

    I will definately try to contact some current AF nurses between now and the time I decide. I did know two AF nurses, but that was about 3-4 years ago and we've all since gone our own way. I'll stay in touch and let you know how it goes. Good luck with your little one!

    Cheers!
  10. Visit  Cherish} profile page
    0
    wow heather seems kinda rude...lol...anyways Tara do whatever YOU want to do. I myself am a Veteran and currently getting my BSN. After that I also want to rejoin the service. I've talked to Army ROTC and Airforce ROTC and both said I have VERY good chances of getting a scholarship. Thing is I kinda want AF rotc but its an hour away Anyways, Tara go for your dream!
  11. Visit  Calfax} profile page
    0
    Tara,

    I'm going to have to agree with Heatherbliss. Flirting with the idea of being a military RN is nice....but you need to be serious b4 even contacting a recruiter. Don't bug 'em if you're not serious.
  12. Visit  TaraSC} profile page
    0
    Quote from Calfax
    Tara,

    I'm going to have to agree with Heatherbliss. Flirting with the idea of being a military RN is nice....but you need to be serious b4 even contacting a recruiter. Don't bug 'em if you're not serious.
    Thanks for your concern. I am completely serious about the idea and that's exactly why I contacted a recruiter already...so that I'm completely informed by the time I'm nearing graduation. It does not hurt anyone to get information ahead of time and to be prepared.

    By the way, this thread was intended to compare/contrast the military and civilian nursing, so if anyone has anything to contribute directly along those lines, that is also appreciated. Thanks!
    Last edit by TaraSC on Apr 6, '04
  13. Visit  Cherish} profile page
    0
    LOL tara...It's always the one who judge who want to say something...READ THE POST BEFORE YOU RESPOND WITH UNNECCESARY COMMENTS!...Tara you in me are in the same boat, we are both Prior Enlistees aka Veterans. So we ALREADY know what the military (army for me, airforce for tara) is about. She just wants to know what nursing is like in the military compared to civilian NOT military life since we ARE veterans. If any airforce/army nurses can respond to the NURSING IN THE MILITARY factor then please respond. Everyone knows that you have to be serious about the military who doesnt? (I know I've been deployed and shot at!). Thanks for any SERIOUS replies.
  14. Visit  heatherbless} profile page
    0
    Quote from Cherish
    LOL tara...It's always the one who judge who want to say something...READ THE POST BEFORE YOU RESPOND WITH UNNECCESARY COMMENTS!...Tara you in me are in the same boat, we are both Prior Enlistees aka Veterans. So we ALREADY know what the military (army for me, airforce for tara) is about. She just wants to know what nursing is like in the military compared to civilian NOT military life since we ARE veterans. If any airforce/army nurses can respond to the NURSING IN THE MILITARY factor then please respond. Everyone knows that you have to be serious about the military who doesnt? (I know I've been deployed and shot at!). Thanks for any SERIOUS replies.
    ditto and your welcome.
  15. Visit  Calfax} profile page
    1
    Very well....to answer your original question, I was a nurse before I joined the Navy. I can't speak for life in the Airforce or the Army because I've only run into Airforce/Army types occasionally thru different tri-service functions.

    As best I can, generally speaking, the major difference in military nursing and civilian nursing is economic. From the civilian aspect.....you will be paid more....but your patient load is high. However you will have some diagnostic ancillary services available such as cath labs, CT machines, ultrasound and access to a whole host of specialty doctors that you won't have in the military. Your facility will also be fairly updated with relatively modern equipment and depending on where you work, cutting edge developments may be going on there......LiCox monitors, fluid ventilation, stuff like that. If you work in the ICU, your patients really will be trainwrecks. If you work in the ER, you may see a lot more trauma than you will in the CONUS military facilities. Navy medicine is very conservative....the Army and especially the Airforce, less so.
    Remember that the military has to spend part of their budgets, not on medical supplies, but on bombs and planes and podiums for mobile command centers and such therefore the medical facilities are slower to update things than the civilian side. Before the airforce pipes up, yes, Wolfert (Wolpert?) Hall in San Antonio is pretty modern with decent equipment.
    On the military side, you have the rank structure (which you are familiar with) and a system for regular promotion thru that structure. You get no pay for overtime, tho and you will put hours over and above your 40/week just like your civilian counterparts....you just don't get paid for them. In order to progress past O4 at least in the navy, you need to get a master's degree, too.
    In the military, you have medics and corpsmen who have, at least some degree of medical training, although how well they perform at work depends on you and you will be sent the corpsmen fresh from school. They will still initially require a lot of training and supervision. In the civilian world, you'll have PCA's or techs who probably have less training and can't give meds or start IV's and dissappear every 5 mins to go smoke and can't lift heavy patients because of their bad backs and call into work a lot.
    In the military, your corpsman will try all same things...but they've got to get a chit first
    That being said, I worked on a pulmo-tele ward when I was a civvie, my patient ratio was 4-6 tele patients with at least 3 being total care types. A lot of times, I had no tech to help me. I worked my butt off just to provide the basics of care.
    In the military, I've worked in on a gen surg ward and the ER. My surgical ward patient ratio was 9 during the day with upt to 12 at night with usually 2 corpsman. Many nights I relied on them to hang my abx, give PO meds and check v/s. My ER ratio is currently 6 to 9 patients of all types (cardiac, peds, medical, trauma etc). In the military you will get no hand-holding. You must be ready to hit the ground running because you will be thrown to the wolves. Course, they did that to me when I was a civvie so maybe it's just nursing.
    You will also get deployed in the military and I know 2 navy nurses who were wounded in battle on the mad dash to Baghdad. So you can get hurt. Deployment terms are growing ever longer....and you will be sent to one of the hottest, most worthless, smelly, ****** places on earth. The airforce had airconditioning, cable, and hot-tubs in their tents (that's what I heard!!!!)
    Lastly, in military nursing, there are nurses who've become officers and there are officers who've become nurses. The first variety are far more valuable than the last. If you're going to nursing school because you think you'd look good in khacki, don't do it. If you're going to school because you like taking care of ppl and you think blood-n-guts is cool then welcome aboard. This can be a dilemma for priors who've become nurse corps officers and then discover that it's not about getting saluted and that they have to work just as hard as when they were enlisted.
    On the other hand....your patients by and large can't sue you. You do get to do cool things like ride in helicopters and humvees and carry a 9 MM. You also can get an incredible amt of training for free from the military. I've got a string of certs now, half a page long, that would have cost me thousands of dollars if I was a civilian. The benefits if you can stick it out 20 years are pretty good and you become experts at getting free MAC flights to different places. 30 days paid vacation (leave) ain't bad either.
    Absolute last word of advice....if you're considering nursing.....DO NOT GO BACK IN WITHOUT A BSN!!!!! Why, if you were enlisted, do you still want to be enlisted again? Go get your BSN and go back in as an officer.
    I hope that helps.....PM me for any specific questions.

    You're an army of one when you cross over into the blue and accelerate your life (grin)
    krick2aliza likes this.


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