shandsburnRN-CRNA 3,651 Views
Joined Jun 15, '07.
Posts: 197 (20% Liked)
Pay definately varies with location like with anything else, so do benefit packages. I work in a relatively rural hospital as a CRNA, my net income for the year is already over $100,000 and the group I work for pays my malpractice/healthcare insurance, I'm a W2 employee through a private anesthesia group that has a contract with the hospital in which I practice. In our group we have contracted CRNA's that are self employeed but contract through the group I work for, they make more $$ gross but are responsible for their own malpractice and healthcare insurance.
A few months ago, gaswork had a listing for Minnesota that would pay to relocate, paid malpractice and healthcare and was starting at $250,000....2 year contract.
I am a CRNA. My critical care/ICU experience came solely from a Burn ICU. The unit I worked in is part of a Level I trauma center so we got all the big burns. My experiences are pretty much what RedCell described, our patients were very sick, usually the sickest in the entire hospital. We used and managed every type of invasive line and monitoring you can think of....some that were still investigational.
You will be well versed in using just about every vasoactive medicine known, especially if you are proactive and take the sickest patients. When these patients get septic they do it fast and they do it heavy.
One thing I particuarly found useful in coming from a Burn ICU prior to anesthesia school was fluid & electrolyte balance/replacement, that seemed to be a big hurdle for some students but for me it was a piece of cake because of that experience. You'll be able to do fluid calculations in your sleep Another plus coming from the Burn ICU is administration of controlled meds (i.e. Fentanyl, Versed, etc), our patients, especially the major burns, survived on those two infusions, so another perk, for me, was having a good understanding of controlled meds prior to anesthesia school.
Vents....90% of our patients were mechanically ventilated, if not for lung injury, because of the massive 3rd spacing that occurs with major burn injury. Most of our vented patients went on to be trached, a few choice patients were even double vented, i.e. the lungs were isolated from each other and vented individually. This was due to severe fibrosis of a lung from a burn injury that effected one lung worse than the other and the pressures needed to inflate each lung were grossly mismatched.
Point being, you shouldn't have any problem entering CRNA school with only Burn ICU experience. Oh one other thing, as horrible as it is, if your unit does peds, thats a plus too. Peds can be scary little creatures in anesthesia, any experience you can get with them will be an added benefit to you.
That will depend on whether you can sit in a classroom without an instructor present and not get side tracked.
The instructors are easy to reach via phone and email. Plus the satellite program they use to teach is 2-way, so you can always ask questions during lecture just like the students in the classroom. Also just picking Miami for clinical is not going to give full-time access to the instructors as some of them lecture from Tampa, Orlando and Gainesville. Also, while I was in school they were recording the lectures via the satellite system so we could access and relisten to the lectures again....not sure if they are still doing that though.
I'm a graduate of the Barry CRNA program. To answer your question about Orlando being the hardest of the clinical rotations, the answer is, yes and no.
You will be worked long hours and treated like crap for awhile no matter where you go. Later you will work long hours and be treated a little better than crap I was at a different clinical location, but got excellent experience. I was in the Ocala/Gainesville site, I got actually bigger numbers (> 2000 cases) and better cases then some of my classmates that were in Orlando. Alot of it comes down to being in the right place at the right time. Peds is a prime example of that, when I did my Peds rotation at Shands they just happened to have a run of kids with really weird pathophysiology that you don't see often, so I got lucky and got REALLY good experience, I also did more than 300 peds cases, a majority were high acuity, my youngest patient was 60 minutes old. As for OB, the hospital in Ocala is the only one in the county that does OB, so you'll get really good OB experience. It's not listed as a high acuity facility like Winnie Palmer, but we get ALOT of emergencies with the same type of patients you'll see at Winnie Palmer because we are the only OB facility in the county.
I think Orlando and Ocala will have you running your own room the fastest, Orlando probably being a little faster. Just keep in mind CRNA school is alot about, you get what you put into it. It's hard and it sucks, but keep your head in the game and you'll get through it.
Good Luck to all of you.
Received my BSN at the University of Central Florida. RN-BSN as an online program, no issues with CRNA school acceptance as I'm a CRNA now.
Hey Portland Medic,
I too am a Paramedic, I am also a CRNA. Becoming a CRNA was the best thing I ever did, take what you know now and increase it a thousand fold. PLUS....no working in the rain, snow, car wrecks on busy roads with speeding traffic that doesn't give a crap that you are there. Now I sit in the OR, in a comfortable chair, wear pajamas (aka scrubs) in the air conditioning. Okay there's ALOT more to it but you know where I coming from. There is still some lifting and patient moving involved in nursing and as a CRNA, but nothing like we deal/dealt with in the field.
As far as formal education, stay "in class" as much as possible. I did a Paramedic to RN Bridge (ADN) which was a formal, in class setting. After graduation I worked in a Burn ICU and did my RN to BSN online through a major university (thats the key with online education, choose programs affiliated with a major university). Alot of my co-students did their RN to BSN online. Also check with CRNA programs you are most intrested in and get their opinion.
The most important thing is to keep you GPA high, score well on your GRE and get your ICU experience in a Level I ICU, i.e. at a university based hospital. There you will get the higher acuity patients that will help you build a strong critical care base for CRNA school.
I'm a CRNA in an ACT model. Supervision is a medicare formality for BILLING, it has absolutely nothing to do with the delivery of the anesthetic. My supervision consists of a MDA coming by sometime during the case and signing my record. Other than that they run the board, see patients in pre-op and PACU and are used for back up if needed.
I think you have a really good chance of being accepted to a program.
Pretty funny - there has been a heated discussion elsewhere on the internet from CRNA's who totally dismiss the idea that the hard sciences are important.
I already know about the practice. I already have done my research for about 2 years, however I have been unable to see how the science portion of the curriculum relates to the every day performance of the position since nurses do not prescribe or designate the anesthetic given.
Different programs weight the GRE score differently. It's a pretty subjective test IMO. Your overall score is good and you did much better in the math section over the verbal. The admission commitees will look at the math score more than the other two. I would consider myself done with the GRE with your score.
I too once stood in front of my nursing class and shared my intentions to become a CRNA. I did this as a Paramedic coming into a nursing program, so I was already seen by some as an "invader" and when CRNA spewed from my mouth, I painted a target on my back in somes eyes.
Today, after an ADN program, 2.5 years in a Level I ICU, a BSN program and my Masters program for anethesia training I call myself a CRNA. I never kept my mouth shut about my intentions. I didn't run around and "brag" about what I wanted to do, but if it came up in conversation I never hid it. Now that I am a CRNA I feel no different, if that is your goal, why should you hide it.
Look at it this way. When a high school student or college undergrad voices intentions of medical school people applaud them. Why should it be any different for a RN voicing intentions of becoming a CRNA. As far as someone becoming a RN to get their "ticket punched" for CRNA school, this is no different than an undergrad college student in a "pre-med" track. What else are we supposed to do, to become a CRNA you have to become a RN first, and if you talk to a sincere, professional CRNA they will tell you, we are a RN first and then an anesthetist. We never stop being nurses, we have just specialized our nursing career to anesthesia.
So to all of those who aspire to become CRNA's good luck to you and be proud of your choice, don't worry about the haters. To all of those who have experienced a pre-CRNA student with a big ego, don't worry, IF they get into school they will quickly be put into place.
I am a new CRNA, finally earned my certificate and state license waaaay back in June. The facility I work is based on an hourly rate and OT for us is available via call for the general OR and for OB. Many of the CRNA's I work with earn $200,000 a year, like a previous poster stated, I have seen $300,000 per year, but they are few and far between.
The whole money thing for motivation is a catch-22 position. Did I go into anesthesia for the money....well in a way yes, was it my main concern, no. But one of my goals in becoming a CRNA was to provide a better life for my wife and kids, so yes in a way money was motivation. However, I LOVE LOVE anesthesia and the care I provide my patients. Many patients are scared to death about their surgery, whether they admit it or not. Being able to talk to the patient about what I can offer them in the pre-op period, intra-op and post-op recovery and physically watching them relax when they have a better understanding is just cool.
I do agree with KSCRNA, anesthesia is not shift work. I leave at all different times of the day depending on the case load for the day. Also monitoring of incoming students is important to maintain quality candidates coming into the system. I understand his/her concern, when he/she became a CRNA 30+ years ago, CRNA programs were sparse and classes were small. Today programs are popping up all over the place and class sizes are increasing, heck my class graduated 55. Has this been detrimental to the profession, I don't know, is the potential there, YES.
Good luck with your future aspirations to become a CRNA, you have a LOOOONG, HARD road ahead of you. CRNA school is truly an awesome experience and being able call myself a CRNA finally is truly an unbelievable feeling.
The antiemetic properties of Decadron are not really well understood. However, research has shown that Decadron may antagonize prostaglandin synthesis and/or release endorphins improving mood, sense of well-being and stimulation of appetite; these factors may play a role in the antiemetic effect of decadron.
I was pimped for this same info as a student and that was the best I could find.
CVICU seems to be a favorite, however any ICU with high acuity patients is beneficial. I worked in a Burn ICU before CRNA school.
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