Why ICU?

  1. This may be a stupid question, so don't laugh However, why is it important to have the experience in ICU and not other areas? I know that ICU is where all the critical care/acute care is performed, but when I'm down in the CCU/ICU for my rotations, I've never seen a CRNA in there. Now, I've seen them in OB, ER, and OR, but not ICU. Am I missing something here? (Remember, don't laugh )
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    About jfpruitt

    Joined: Aug '01; Posts: 214; Likes: 1


  3. by   alansmith52
    Prior to this last year I think I would have asked the same thing.
    first you need to relize that they want you to work in ICU not becuase CRNA's work there. but, because it is where pre-CRNA's can get the most exposure to the same kind of monitoring techiniques that are needed in the OR.
    I worked on a regualr medical/surgical floor for two years. when it was time to move I really wanted to work in an ER and was actually treding working in an ICU because I thought it much the same only sicker patients.
    There have been many shifts this last year where I was unable to even leave the patients side due to the fact that his BP was so labile (did I spell that right labile hmmm) I was autonomous in my decsion making as to weather I would go up or down on his vasoacive dripps. Also have had experince in paralyising patients with neuro-musculorblockers not unlike those used in the OR. I don't think I would have had so much experince with these things in the ER ( I might would have on occasion but not daily like I do here)
    And I swichted hospitals, the former was a regional hospital the ICU had like 10 beds and most of their patients were MI rule-outs. If I had stayed there I may have never had to do any hemodynamic monitoring. so to make a long story not mean much and be pretty much useless. I say there is a good reason to work in an ICU. and the bigger the better, the sicker the better.
  4. by   lgcv
    To learn effective ventilator management, monitoring and interpretation of Art lines/swan ganz/telemetry, effective therapy for managing those variables (vasoactive drugs which ones when). You won't get those experiences anywhere other than an ICU.
    originally posted by lgcv
    to learn effective ventilator management, monitoring and interpretation of art lines/swan ganz/telemetry, effective therapy for managing those variables (vasoactive drugs which ones when). you won't get those experiences anywhere other than an icu.
    especially when aas & crnas are supposed to be on equal ground. why do a perspective crna student have to work in critical care for at least a year to a year & half while the aas don't. both programs will award a master's degree & both must sit for national certification; in fact, according to aa websites, perspective aa students don't even have to have a bs degree in a medical field...they just have to have a bachelor's degree.

    to make insult to injury, some aas are licensed as pas & are a part of the ama where crnas are not licensed as nps. the question isn't how would perspective crna students benefit from working in critical care areas but should be wouldn't both aa & crna students benefit from this experience???

    here are some url links that explain the scope of aas (anesthesiologist assistants):
    american medical association (ama) website on anesthesiologist assistant:

    american academy of anesthesiologist assistants website:

    wisconsin medicaid handbook website:

    commonwealth of kentucky website:
  6. by   lgcv
    See my response in the MDA vs CRNA thread. There is a vast difference. Just do a little homework before you make a decision.
  7. by   lgcv
    The main reason is that AA's are completely dependent upon anesthesiologists. CRNA's are not. Therefore, CRNA's must have a STRONG medical background.