ECMO

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    Does anyone here have any experience with doing ECMO, specifically priming? There's a possibility I may be becoming a primer soon. Any tips for learning the procedure and tidbits of the circuit and problem shooting, if so? What experience have you had with it? Basically any advice would be appreciated! Even if I don't get the position now, I would like to in the future!
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  5. 3
    Our ECMO core team and perfusionists are the only ones that prime and set up the pump. The core team is made up of nurses and respiratory therapists who ONLY do ecmo, our bedside specialists (who also have extensive training) never prime and set up the pumps. I would hope that you would already have ecmo experience before taking on a role like that and that you would then have extensive training.
    poppycat, littlepeopleRNICU, and chare like this.
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    Thanks for your reply. Our unit is set up a bit differently, it sounds like. We have an ECMO team, but it is made up of nurses and RTs who are also bedside staff some shifts. It is about 10 staff members from a roster of about 100 from the nursing end. Who is on duty/on-call is rotated out. There are requirements for interviewing and then being on the team, and you obviously would not be taking a separate assignment when you are assigned to ECMO. We(all unit staff) all have ECMO knowledge and experience of caring for the patient, but only those who apply and are offered the team positions as primers and ECMO specialists actually do ANYTHING with the actual ECMO itself, so I am of course limited in that respect since I currently do not fill either role. There is a very extensive orientation to follow if you are accepted. Nobody ever seems to have an issue with this.
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    Well so long as you have a good orientation it should be ok. In my unit all staff is also trained to do ecmo bedside, certain rn's in the nicu/pcicu are ecmo specialists and sit pump and then our core team who do ecmo only (they are usually former nurses/rt's) prime the pumps.
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    Perfusionists at my unit handle all standard and cardiac ECMOs from priming to running the pump.


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