Critical care vs med/surg RN

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    My packet will be ready for my recruter to submit for October. I'm wondering if I should switch areas I work in now. I work in cardiovascular which navy considers med/surg. If I chose to switch to ICU how long do I have to work there to be considered a ICU nurse. My understanding is it is very difficult to get in med/surg. I do have 7 years experience in CVU.
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  3. 9 Comments so far...

  4. 0
    Can you be more specific, what is CVU. Are you working in a step down unit or a CVICU? Big difference. Where you work all depends on what kind of nurse you want to be. If you want to work in an ICU then you should work in an ICU now. Nurse internship coordinators are more likely to place you in an ICU environment if you have already worked there and have some experience.
    You say that you have 7 years experience, is that as a RN or some other kind of LPN/CNA type position because if it is the latter then it won't make a difference where you have worked. If you have 7 years experience as an ICU nurse then that will go a long way to getting you into the ICU, especially if it was a CVICU. If you have taken the ECCO course or have your CCRN then these will also help solidify your case for entry into the unit.
    Now if you want med/surg then that is not a problem, especially of you have 7 years experience as a RN. The Navy needs nurses all across the board. Every ward/unit I work in/float to is undermanned. Just be clear about what your goals are when you work with the nurse internship coordinator. She/he will be the one who gets you onto the ward/unit.
    One last thing, if you do have 7 years exp as a RN then make sure that you are coming in as a O-2 at least. I am not sure what the years:rank equivelant is but you will at least be an O-2. Hope this helped.
  5. 0
    CVU is stepped down from open heart recovery. I guess u would consider it progressive care although the hospital i work at considers it critical care so it's not a med/surg unit. The navy considers it a med/surg unit. I do not have my CCRN, missed it by 7 questions. I've been an RN for 8 years but my BSN for 1 year. My recruiter says since I've only had my BSN for a year I have to go in as an O1. My main worry is the competitiveness of getting in the navy.
  6. 0
    If it is a step down unit from ICU, then it is not ICU and is not considered equivalent experience. Without experience - preferably with CCRN (where you also have so many hours completed in an ICU) - then the military won't put you in directly to ICU. At least not in the ARmy or Air Force. Tele is not considered ICU by any stretch.
  7. 0
    The Navy does put people into the ICU as new grads and without previous experience on occasion. Good luck.
  8. 0
    If I was to switch to ICU in order to get my crediantials changed, would going into an ICU intership program count? I know I would have to work 90 days to count as an ICU nurse but does it start after the internship program?
    Thank you
  9. 0
    So do you think you have the skills and knowledge to deploy and work ICU independently and save the lives of our wounded? I don't think a preceptorship qualifies. Nothing personal... I just want the nurse next to me downrange to be able to really do the job and be fully prepared. (sorry but when you spin up for deployment, you will understand that we only have each other out there.)
  10. 0
    I see what u r saying. My current unit is considered critical care (ccu), we just don't have vents. So, navy considers it med/surg. :-(
  11. 0
    Quote from staugnurse
    I see what u r saying. My current unit is considered critical care (ccu), we just don't have vents. So, navy considers it med/surg. :-(
    you're hospital may consider it critical care unit. but realistically, to be considered a critical care unit, it must be able to care for the sickest, most critical patient in the hospital. usually if they are that sick, they are on the ventilator. Personally, i think you can only consider a unit as critical care if most of your patients are on the vent, with invasive lines and life-saving machines. So I could actually understand why the navy would consider it med-surg, although I will not totally agree with that.
  12. 0
    Does anyone think that a new graduate nurse in the Navy will or can be placed on a SICU unit (Step-down ICU) or a less critical area than ICU/ER? Usually it's Med-Surg first for new grads, but I figured I should ask if there is even a chance to get a position like that as I will be going to Bethesda, MD after ODS this May. It's my goal to make my way into a critical care position and eventually Flight nursing. Any suggestions on how to make that happen from those in the Nurse Corp or those familiar with the process? Please and thank you for your help/suggestions


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