Question for any nurse practitioners or flight nurses???

  1. Hey everyone,

    I am currently an RN in the ER. I have been working there for a little over a year and worked a year in a peds unit prior to that. I am looking at applying for graduate school and getting into either a FNP program and get an ER specialty or an ACNP program.

    Now I was wondering, do any of you know about nurse practitioners working in a flight helicopter? Do they have their FNP or ACNP? Do they have any extra certifications besides the required CEN, TNS, PALS, and ACLS? Does this job actually exist or am I just making it up? How would I find more information? Thanks guys for any comments back.
  2. Visit CoeKohawk11 profile page

    About CoeKohawk11

    Joined: Jan '11; Posts: 18; Likes: 3
    Emergency Room RN, BSN; from US
    Specialty: 3 year(s) of experience in Pediatrics, ER


  3. by   zenman
    Waste for a nurse practitioner when a flight nurse can handle it.
  4. by   juan de la cruz
    I'd have to agree that you don't need to be an advanced practice nurse to be part of a flight nurse crew. A good background in Critical Care, Emergency, CCRN and/or CEN will get you in the door. As an ED nurse, you would have TNCC and ENPC already wouldn't you? There is a certification program for flight nurses (CFRN) which is offered through the same group that awards the CEN.

    There are many flight nurses who are also NP's (and CRNA's). Not sure how their role is different but if you don't get a response here, you should inquire with the Acute Care NP Flight Nursing Program at Case Western: Flight Nursing Program: Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing at Case Western Reserve University. Ask where their graduates work and what is different for an ACNP working in flight setting as opposed to a non-NP. It sounds like the program is ACNP in content with additional flight training.
  5. by   operationflightnurse
    ACNP is the way to go. I am currently a flight nurse practitioner and finished a masters program to obtain ACNP while practicing as a flight RN. I disagree with the above comment that NP is a waste. When I was a flight RN, I thought I knew a lot about critical care but you really don't understand the limited knowledge you have untill you obtain that knowledge. You will learn more than you think in school.
    Last edit by Esme12 on Jul 27, '13 : Reason: TOS/solicitation
  6. by   operationflightnurse
    this in no way implies your (or any other RN) knowledge is might not understand what he doesn't know until they actually know it...if that makes sense.

    ACNP not only expands on ones current critical care knowledge, it teaches one how to use the vast information available and interpret it into their practice.

    Anyone can publish a study and get results but what do those results mean? Are they valid? Are they valid to your patient?
    Last edit by operationflightnurse on Jul 1, '13
  7. by   zenman
    My post above still stands. As a former military medic and a flight nurse on a helicopter working offshore on rigs and boats I still say it's above board (no pun intended) to have a NP. That's just my opinion of course but that's why we have paramedics and military corpsman instead of physicians on the front lines. But I won't argue the luxury of having you take care of me in flight, lol!
  8. by   NurseBettieGray
    If I am reading your question correctly, I think you are asking if there is a job for a "flight nurse practitioner" rather than JUST a "flight RN". The answer is no, there is not. There are some NP's and PA's who are also flight nurses, but they do not practice as a NP or PA on the rotor or fixed wing. When they are flying, they are ONLY a flight nurse. (I say "ONLY" to make a distinction between RN and NP; I am not dissing RN's!) I am sure the education that you receive, to get your NP, will help you tremendously as you practice as a flight RN because you will understand disease processes, medication, and treatments at a more advanced level.
    Last edit by NurseBettieGray on Jul 10, '13 : Reason: Extra word and I forgot some punctuation
  9. by   airmedicRN
    How to become a flight nurse:

    Step 1 - Get your paramedic license
    Step 2 - Get out of the ED and obtain ICU experience

    There are NP's (FNP and ACNP) who fly. But those who I know do it for fun. They were flying before their included.
  10. by   EllieHancock
    ACNP is the best way to go, they are many jobs out there for this particular area aswell for a nurse practitioner, it seems like you may have a long time to go but it will sure be worth it! Good luck.
    Last edit by AN Admin Team on Jun 6, '16
  11. by   RockMay
    You don't know what you don't know, Operationflightnurse, which is what is the scary part of nursing education.