Calling all ED Techs...

  1. I have accepted an offer for an ED tech position, my expected start date is May 6th. For this position, a CNA cert was highly preferred. I got my cert 5 months ago and this is my first position in the medical world at all...feeling very lucky and blessed to have gotten this position without real world experience, aside from clinicals 5 months ago...from what I was told, it is quite a bit different than normal CNA jobs. My question to the ED techs is this:

    What should I go over again in my CNA book to help me better prepare for this position?

    Should I pick up some extra books from the book store to better prepare me?
    If so what are some good ones to look for?

    Are there any areas, or things that I should really focus on knowing extremely well?

    It is a teaching hospital and they said that I will be given opportunities to take classes on phlebotomy, and reading EKG's, among a few other things that my duties will include.

    I just really want to be prepared for this.

    If there is any advice for me, I am willing to listen!
    Thank you for your replies!
  2. Visit AlaskaHopeful profile page

    About AlaskaHopeful

    Joined: May '12; Posts: 25; Likes: 12
    from US


  3. by   mitsugirly
    Have they told you if you are going to have a mentor? At our hospital we have someone that teaches us (another ED tech that has done the job for awhile) how to do everything needed in the position. We are usually with that person for on the job training for about 6 weeks. They also sent us to a 2 week training class as well prior to that.

    I do have to say that even with the training, you will always come across something new or only run in to certain things every so often so you won't get to practice something a lot to become better. Just like I don't get very many chances to do cast/splints (maybe once every month if that), so when I do, I fumble but it's ok. You have to learn sooner or later. With each practice, you get better.
  4. by   AlaskaHopeful
    Thank you for the reply! I am very nervous. They will assign a preceptor, but i'm not sure how long it will be for. My general orientation starts May 6th. I was told by the recruiter that someone from the ED should be there at some point to help with the questions that I may have. I know the general orientation is 3 different days, 13 hours total. One day is for the computer network. The other two are general. I know that I will have to learn new things and I'm so eager to learn things. Most of my classmates found themselves in LTC.

    Did you have experience prior to the ED? Were you a CNA or EMT?
  5. by   funtimes
    I work for an ambulance company that has a huge coverage area and they post us all over the place, so I see many different ERs, sometimes in one shift. From what I've seen ER techs vary hugely in what they do and what training they recieve. Some places hire techs with no experience or licensing and prefer to train them from scratch(rare), others prefer EMTs or Paramedics with lots of road experience who are ready to go from day one, others use CNAs, and some use RN students, or a combination of all of the above, with different levels of ER tech, like EMERGENCY TECHNICIAN I or II.

    If its a big ER they may have you start out just working in certain areas like observation and largely staying out of the trauma room unless there is a code and they want you to do compressions.

    One ER near me doesnt use techs at all because the RNs dont want them. Most likely because they know it means less RNs are staffed and they will lose hours as a result.

    Expect to see a lot of drunks, drug seekers and psych patients.
    Last edit by funtimes on Apr 22, '13 : Reason: typo
  6. by   MommaTy
    You shouldn't need any books. You will be trained with another ER tech and will gain all your experience doing the position instead of reading about it. Good luck. Just remember you will see some pretty intense fast moving things in the ER, how exciting you got that opportunity.
  7. by   cbronstad
    Congratulations on your new position. I used to work as an ER tech from 2001-2007. Loved IT!! My suggestion, take a little pocket notebook and jot down important things for you to remember. Make sure you have a stethescope, Trauma shears, a pen light, and pens. I saw and learned so much! You will too!
    It will be a lot at first, but you'll get there. Be sure you are comfortable with Vital signs. You'll mainly use a manual machine, but there are times when you can't. So be familiar with counting a pulse, respirations, and blood pressure.
    Most of what you learned in CNA class about body mechanics is great too.
    But you won't really do much bathing and activities of daily living tasks.
    Best thing I can say, is always remember how you would want your family member taken care of.
    Good Luck!!!
  8. by   StudentOfChaos79
    Oh how I LOVE the ER!! I, like others here, learned SOOOOO MUCH when I working in that dept. But, with that, it also depends on where you work and how the nurses are. I worked with the most amazing RN's I have ever met. I could ask 1,000 questions a day and they always were helpful, they knew I was exciting about learning more and loved to help. Worked with a group of RN's that were really just crap, attitudes of "just do your tech stuff and leave the rest to us, nothing u need to know"...when all of us had LOTS of experiance and/or where in EMT-P/Nursing school. Also, it will depend on what your scope of practice is there...what all are you "allowed to do"? When I worked with the super-awesome-nurses, we had a HUGE amount of trust for one another. They esp. did with me, since it was their lic. on the line. But that trust had to be earned. I did the IV's, foleys, all kinds of things. The other ER, NOPE...they didn't even let us draw blood, but we sat at the front desk for the initial triage...makes no sense lol. But where they didn't let us insert IV's (I should add that I do have my IV Therapy Cert from the state of Texas lol) or labs, but we splinted EVERYTHING...I hadn't done that since school in 2000 so that was rough for me to get into the swing of and "learn" lol. Stay positive and don't worry...if you like to learn the ER is awesome for that. Know matter how smart a person THINKS they are, the ER is somewhere that will quickly remind you that you know a good though...motivation to LEARN...always LEARN and become a sponge!
    Good Luck to you hun!
    Last edit by StudentOfChaos79 on Apr 29, '13 : Reason: Spelling/Grammer