Specialties Advanced


  • Specializes in ICU and Peds.

So where to begin? I am a 25 year old working in a 15 bed general ICU. I have my BSN and have been trying to decide where to go from here. I was set on travel nursing for a year and then applying for CRNA. After shadowing a few of the CRNAs here at the hospital, I realize that while the money would be wonderful, the job was just boring. I once again started looking for other opitions. Last year my fiance was diagnosed with Stage Four Rhabdomyosarcoma with mets to the lungs. His prognosis is poor. We have started to see a severe decline in his overall health lately. Because of this I have decided it most important for me to stay in the area. We have a CRNP program close by that I could commute to. I have been shadowing a hospitalist and enjoy the work he does. (for the most part.) My question is do I jump the gun and enter into CRNP or wait and see if my goals change. I know if I take the CRNP route I want to do acute care and work in the hospital!!! I'm asking for some insite into the world of CRNP in Alabama. Things such as: are you doing the job you thought you would be doing? Are you getting to see and treat patients, or merely rounding and dictating for the MD? Are you hands on? (CVL placement, intubation, Chest tube insertion, sutures?) Are you happy with your job? Are you content with your salary? What are areas you tend to compain about? Any positives/negatives you wish to share?

Thanks guys! Just looking for some input from those who know!

Advanced Practice Columnist / Guide

juan de la cruz, MSN, RN, NP

8 Articles; 4,341 Posts

Specializes in APRN, Adult Critical Care, General Cardiology.

Sorry to read about your fiance. What I would do is ask the ACNP program you're interested in to see if you can get in touch with graduates of the program or even shadow them since your question is specific to Alabama. I am an ACNP who have been working in the ICU since 2004 and I love it a lot...but I have not practiced in your state.


6 Posts

Specializes in ICU and Peds.

Excellent idea. Thank you for your response.


14 Posts

I don't have the experience yet, but thought it might be helpful for you to know you're not alone in making this kind of decision. I worked in an ICU for a year, shadowed a team of anesthesiologists for a day and said "NOPE." It was way too boring for me. I hated being in the OR for those 8 hours. I thought "theres no way I can do this on a daily basis."

I am now a year into my DNP program (for Acute Care NP) but want to move forward on the administrative role. It would be ideal to work as a Director or CNO in a hospital as I've transitioned out of the ICU and work in another setting where I can write orders etc as an RN and realize I enjoy it, but like working more with policy development and administration.

I don't know about your program, but the DNP program I'm in is part-time and I'm able to work full-time at my job and still have PLENTY of time outside of school/work for a life. I hear this is not the same for CRNA programs. I'd say do it. You'll be able to focus on the things you love, including your fiance. I'm sure you've picked up shifts before and realize that the money isn't all that its cracked up to be (taxes take so much out), and you probably realized its much more important to be happy in your position and with your work/life balance. Good luck! Keep us posted. It will help others in similar situations.

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