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can level 1 trauma IMCU/SICU Step-down experience get you into CRNA school?

SRNA   (516 Views 14 Comments)

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I know that some schools accept level 1 trauma ER experience for admission into CRNA school. But do any schools accept level 1 trauma IMCU (Intermediate care Unit) experience? I got a job offer and the way it was explained to me, everything that they do in their IMCU is what my old small community hospital was doing in their ICU. ( 2-3:1 patient ratio, vasoactive drips, A-lines,  ventilators, vasopressors) basically we would be getting patients directly from their SICU when they’re “a little more stable”. and sometimes take their patients in case they lack beds on their end. but everything described sounds like an icu setting to me. any thoughts?

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Here.I.Stand has 16 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in SICU, trauma, neuro.

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I can’t speak to all programs, but

At my level 1 trauma center, we ICU nurses get floated to the stepdown units if we’re over staffed; that level of care isn’t considered adequate experience for the CRNA programs in my area.  ED isn’t either... my hospital’s ED is the busiest in my state and those nurses are heroes....but the vast majority of patients who come through aren’t critical.  It’s a lot of chronic pain stuff, viral illnesses, and un-/underinsured people who know they will be treated.  If it was all trauma stabilization I suspect it may be different.  

But the programs in my area specify experience must be adult ICU.

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I floated between all of the ICUs and stepdown, which at my hospital was under the critical care umbrella. My stepdown took almost everything the other ICUs took with the exception of intubated patients. Additionally, though they took drips, if a patient was on multiple drips, those patients would usually not come to stepdown. And lastly, even though stepdown took seriously ill patients, they generally were fairly stable-if not, they were bumped up the units. So all things considered, even this kind of stepdown would not be considered adequate for CRNA school in most programs from what I understand.

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15 minutes ago, Horseshoe said:

I floated between all of the ICUs and stepdown, which at my hospital was under the critical care umbrella. My stepdown took almost everything the other ICUs took with the exception of intubated patients. Additionally, though they took drips, if a patient was on multiple drips, those patients would usually not come to stepdown. And lastly, even though stepdown took seriously ill patients, they generally were fairly stable-if not, they were bumped up the units. So all things considered, even this kind of stepdown would not be considered adequate for CRNA school in most programs from what I understand.

i understand what you’re saying. but so my next question is: what is the difference between the ER experience that is accepted and IMCU experience that isn’t? I talked to a CRNA that actually works at the level 1 trauma i’m applying to and she said that she never did ICU she just did regular ER and her program accepted it. (she works for the same level 1 trauma that she did her year of ER in.) 

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buspar has 2 years experience and specializes in ICU/CCU.

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If it’s not ICU, schools don’t count ; doesn’t matter that stepdown acuity is high or not 

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9 hours ago, nursingsprettycool17 said:

i understand what you’re saying. but so my next question is: what is the difference between the ER experience that is accepted and IMCU experience that isn’t? I talked to a CRNA that actually works at the level 1 trauma i’m applying to and she said that she never did ICU she just did regular ER and her program accepted it. (she works for the same level 1 trauma that she did her year of ER in.) 

Maybe that person has more than a year of ER experience..? or more than a year of nursing experience. I don't know.. but you have to consider that most programs are getting more and more competitive. Not to mention the applicant pool. Also, you have to understand that they're not requiring ICU experience just to delay you; they want you to be well prepared before stepping into the field. 

Edited by kaleks

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I know of no school that would count step-down time alone as all you needed.  Why would they?!?!? I does not supply you with the needed base upon which the rest of your career would based.  Additionally, if you were to find a school that would count it, you would have to ask yourself, "why are they counting this?"  Most likely to fill spots that other more qualified candidates turned down.  There are simply no shortcuts, so stop looking for one.

 

Edited by BigPappaCRNA

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1 minute ago, BigPappaCRNA said:

I know of no school that would count step-down time alone as all you needed.  Why would they?!?!? I does not supply you with the needed base upon which the rest of your career would based.  Additionally, if you were to find a school that would count it, you would have to ask yourself, "why are they counting this?"  Most likely to fill spots that other more qualified candidates turned down.  There are simply no shortcuts, so stop looking for one.

 

i understand, but how does ER count while stepdown doesn’t? 

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Well, I don't really think that it should count.  But for the schools that accept it, it is probably because it promotes critical thinking, and problem solving, and priority based interventions.  You have to, and do, treat every possible scenario, just like being in the OR.  there is far more critical thinking in a busy, Level I ER, than in any step-down unit.  In this instance, the valuable experienced gleaned from the ER is not in the drips, vents, lines, but rather in thought process, decision making, and priority setting.  Both are nice to have, but neither of which you will get in a step-down unit.

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RyanCarolinaBoy has 11 years experience and specializes in ICU.

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Short answer-NO. Working IMC does not qualify one to adequately train for CRNA school. Knowing vent management, sedation support, and gtt titrations are all key aspects taught at the ICU level that you simply don’t do/see on IMC-regardless of location. 

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rawz2014 is a APRN, CRNA and specializes in Crna.

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I hear people say er experience counts. I’d like a link showing 1 school that counts / accepts er experience now. I heard a long time ago 1 school did. But I dont think they have for a long long time.  I know of none that accepts er experience.

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