What to do for RN/EMT-P?

  1. I am graduating as an LPN in 10 days. I keep asking myself what to do next. My goal is to become an RN/EMT-P. Would it be wise to wait for the paramedic license until after I get my RN? Are there more short-cuts for RN to Paramedic vs LPN to Paramedic?
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  2. 15 Comments

  3. by   CraigB-RN
    My first response is why do you want to be a RN/EMT-P? And after that I'd wonder were you were. There is enough differnces in how things work and what you can do as both, depending on were you are.

    There are a few programs out there were you can get your EMT-P after you get your RN. But they only work if you've been a critical care.ER RN first. Chrighton university having the most well known one.
  4. by   Rocky_LPN
    fly nurse? im a LPN now Just got into my RN program and in a year ill do my emt-p
  5. by   EricJRN
    I'm a NICU nurse and EMT-Intermediate going through an RN to Paramedic transition right now. Agree with Craig - we'd need more info to best advise you. It works differently from state to state.
  6. by   tater.jake
    I chose nursing as an alternative to Paramedic. I saw a broader scope of practice, more pay, and more flexibility for a comparable amount of education. However, I want to stay in the more critical areas of nursing. I don't think I would enjoy working on a floor with 8 patients at a time, making sure they took their insulin and lanoxin and had their bowel movement. After doing my clinical rotations, I think I would be most at home in an ER, OR, or life flight. Adrenaline is my friend.

    I am in Idaho. I'm just having a hard time making up my mind as to where or what to do for education from here, because my LPN program has been a complete circus. I don't want to continue with my local university.
    Last edit by tater.jake on Dec 7, '06
  7. by   CraigB-RN
    Hmmmm OK. I can understand that. I go bonkers working on the floor myself.

    1. First I'd suggest that you just focus on completing your RN and getting some critical care/ER experience. It's possible to get directly into ER's and ICU's as a new grad and just focus on becoming a good nurse. Start collecting the alphabet soup after your name, CEN, CCRN, ACLS, TNCC, PALS and all that kind of stuff. Maybe if you've already an EMT run with your local EMS service part time to keep up those prehospital/out of hospital assessment skills.

    2. Now after you've been a nurse and want to specialize even more, then start looking at the EMT-P. Now it all will depend on were you are. Some states require having EMT-P on the aircraft and other states don't. By that time, you may find that there is another option. One of the new trends is utilizing Acute Care NP's in critical care transports. Case Western even has a program specifically for that. Now it's still to be determined how this will play out.

    3. I guess at this time I'm suggesting that you just focus on one thing right now, and the RN has the most options, and can potentially take you farther.

    4. You're prob going to get plenty of other thoughts on this, and each answer is prob going to be the correct answer for someone, but maybe not for you. There is not one perfect answer, only suggestions for you to find what's best for you. If your looking for more specific information you're welcome to PM me.

    As to my background to support my statements, I've been been doing this for 30 years now. Both as an RN and as a Paramedic. I've been both a nursing and paramedic instructor. I've been both a flight nurse and a flight paramedic, as well as being an ICU and ER nurse.
  8. by   tater.jake
    wow, thanks for the info
  9. by   olmedic
    I have been a paramedic for over 18 years. I love the job, and the close relationships I have made with co-workers. However, the pay for Paramedics will never be anything super great, unless you specialize, or use the flexible schedule to work more than one job.

    I would recommend the RN direction, and then take the RN to Paramedic transition. Use the RN career to make sure you always put food on the table, but work part time as a Paramedic to stay fine tuned on skills and enjoy the freedom that the protocols give you.
  10. by   CrufflerJJ
    Quote from mtb83201
    I am graduating as an LPN in 10 days. I keep asking myself what to do next. My goal is to become an RN/EMT-P. Would it be wise to wait for the paramedic license until after I get my RN? Are there more short-cuts for RN to Paramedic vs LPN to Paramedic?
    I've been a medic for 15 years, and am not yet a nurse (but will be in 2-3 years once I start my accelerated BS-->MSN coursework). I'm in Ohio and don't know how things are in Idaho, but have not heard of any LPN-->EMT-P transition programs. There are RN-->EMT-P programs around here.

    I would also recommend that you get your RN first, then take the bridge course to EMT-P. Why? Well...depending on your state requirements, the EMT-P program is about 5 quarters long (8-12 hours/week class time + clinicals). NONE of this counts towards your RN coursework. I don't know for sure, but doubt that the RN-->EMT-P bridge course would take as long to complete. If it's job related, your employer might even be willing to pick up part of the tab.

    All that being said, if you want to get your EMT-P certification to work in the field, plan on running squad for a year or two after getting your EMT or EMT-P certification to get a firm grasp on the basics of field EMS. It's a WHOLE different world than a well lit/well staffed ER.
  11. by   tater.jake
    thanks to everyone. very helpful information. One other thing that lingers on my mind is whether it is necessary to have a BSN-RN to be a flight nurse. If I can do it with an associates, I would like to go that route.
  12. by   CraigB-RN
    I think about 50% of the nurses in my service have ADN's.
  13. by   Demonsthenes
    I suggest that you obtain your Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support certification upon graduation. This should compliment the vast array of theoretical and practical knowledge that you already have as an LVN.
    The most important knowledge, skills, assesment, and intervention skills that you can have as a nurse are related to the cardiovascular, respiratory, and neurological systems. These systems are requisite for the support of life while the other systems are generally secondarily requisite for the same. The training that you receive through ACLS will prepare you to deal with emergencies and non-emergencies with regard to these most important bodily systems. Further training will only build upon this basic knowedge. You can more effectively build your knowledge and skills, after obtaining your ACLS, through nursing, in my opinion. I obtained my ACLS last week.
    Last edit by Demonsthenes on Dec 14, '06
  14. by   EricJRN
    In my area, having several years of experience as a critical care nurse (preferably in a large adult ICU) is more important than getting a BSN.

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