ontario flight nursing

  1. Hi, I am a nursing student in Hamilton and am very interested in becoming a flight nurse eventually- problem is, I can't seem to find any info at all on how to do this in Ontario or even if the job exists! Can anybody help me on this, ie: companies or hospitals which hire flight nurses, and what qualifications I need to obtain? I would be so grateful for any information.
    Thanks in advance!!!
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  2. 5 Comments

  3. by   lalaxton
    Tanya,
    Not sure of who operates medevac services in Ontario, but I can tell you that most flight nurses have either ICU or ER experience as well as having (minimum) ACLS, PALS, TNCC (trauma nurse core curriculum) certifications. In the US some services require RN's to also be paramedics! My advice is to get into an ER after graduating and get some experience. At that point you will be in contact with ambulances and flight teams and you'll be able find out what the local services require!

    Good luck!
  4. by   Polarbear
    Tanya. I want the same thing. This is what I have been told. Yes get a minimum of 5 years ICU or ER experience. Take any trama coarse you can get your hands on. Be prepared to relocate to either Ottawa or northern ontario because toronto the market is full of people with Tons of ICU/ER experience. Be Bilingual because up north they speak alot of french. And to find out who does it, take a look through the yellow pages, ask them what they will want when your ready. Hope this helps a little
  5. by   Georg
    Hi Tanya,
    I am a flight nurse in Northern Alberta, and thought I could tell you about what it took for me. In Alberta (I have no idea about the law in Ontario) it is the law that a Paramedic must be in the aircraft. The company I work for decided that they would like to try a nurse and paramedic team and see how that worked. Up until then, all flights were manned by either two paramedics, or a paramedic and an EMT. We have another company in Alberta who now use an RN/EMT-P team, but they are the only two in the province. (That is to say, to the best of my knowledge). To become a flight nurse, I had 12 years of hospital experience, 6 of which were in the ER, with a small amount of ICU experience, as well. I hold certifications in ACLS, BTLS (advanced), PALS, and should have a certification in NRBP (although I don't yet). I also have two levels of ACCN. My first level is in ICU and the second is in ER. I know all of this sounds overwhelming, but you just take it one course at a time, and soon enough, you will have everything you need. In order to get this job, I had to actively pursue it and persevere as a casual until a job came open. If I were you, I would start by calling some of the Emergency rooms in Northern Ontario, and ask them how they transport their patients to the larger centres when necessary. Ask if the companies are privately owned, and for their names and then call them. Check and see whether they even use nurses. You'll probably find most of them don't. My advice would be to phone the ERs late at night, when the triage nurses may have more time to talk to you. If you identify yourself as a student, they would likely be happy to talk to you. My email is ggerow@home.com if you need any help. Good luck.
  6. by   tanyalawrence
    Thanks to everyone who posted answers to my question! It's been really hard to find anything out until now. It all sounds so overwhelming but I'll see how everything goes and I definitely will obtain as many courses as I can. I appreciate everyone's help so much, thanks again!!
  7. by   MobileNurseSara
    I agree with getting ER/ICU experience (or both!) and ALL the trauma/emergency/critical care courses you can.

    Ornge is a flight company we deal with in my area (Ottawa Valley) you could also call one of the GTA hospitals (try and get the ER secretary) and ask which air ambulance company they deal with it might not get you very far, but it's worth a try anyway.

    Good luck!

    ETA: Woops...didn't notice the date on this post! Sorry to bump it up.

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