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Can someone please breakdown the different areas of emergency nursing for me? I'm from a non-clinical background and just started an accelerated program in order to pursue my dream in providing medical assistance during large scale disasters. 

Emergency nursing seems to most closely align with the disaster relief training I'm after--but please correct me if I'm wrong. The ENP program at the school I started going to requires at least 1 year of experience in the ED before beginning the specialty specific courses. Yet with my limited knowledge of clinical things, I'm wondering if this is even the right field for me to pursue. 

Different specialties in nursing I've encountered that sound interesting to me are: RNFA, Trauma nursing, wildnerness nursing, and emergency nursing.

The school's website included some field exercises on the emergency nursing page--which is what drew me to the school, but the more I find out about their ENP program, the more I'm learning that it is basically strictly ED nursing. What is the difference with emergency nursing and trauma nursing? Are trauma nurses in the ED or ICU? What are the different level of traumas I've seen in other posts? Can someone please break this down for me? I'm so lost I'm considering just dropping out of the program and just joining the military to be trained as a medic. 

Also, what's a critical care nurse compared to emergency nurse and trauma nurse? 

speedynurse, ADN, RN, EMT-P

Specializes in ER, Pre-Op, PACU.

Some emergency departments are trauma centers and some aren’t. However, it doesn’t mean that you won’t get traumas. I have never worked at a trauma center but traumas do end up at these ERs from time to time anyway! You can get some trauma certifications....TNCC as an example. A critical care nurse can cover many specialities.....all types of ICU nursing to ER nursing.....to PACU to IR nursing. 

On 9/25/2020 at 3:32 PM, Kymmlin said:

Can someone please breakdown the different areas of emergency nursing for me? I'm from a non-clinical background and just started an accelerated program in order to pursue my dream in providing medical assistance during large scale disasters. 

Emergency nursing seems to most closely align with the disaster relief training I'm after--but please correct me if I'm wrong. The ENP program at the school I started going to requires at least 1 year of experience in the ED before beginning the specialty specific courses. Yet with my limited knowledge of clinical things, I'm wondering if this is even the right field for me to pursue. 

Different specialties in nursing I've encountered that sound interesting to me are: RNFA, Trauma nursing, wildnerness nursing, and emergency nursing.

The school's website included some field exercises on the emergency nursing page--which is what drew me to the school, but the more I find out about their ENP program, the more I'm learning that it is basically strictly ED nursing. What is the difference with emergency nursing and trauma nursing? Are trauma nurses in the ED or ICU? What are the different level of traumas I've seen in other posts? Can someone please break this down for me? I'm so lost I'm considering just dropping out of the program and just joining the military to be trained as a medic. 

Also, what's a critical care nurse compared to emergency nurse and trauma nurse? 

All emergency departments treat trauma.

Some are trauma centers.  Trauma centers have different designations depending on resources available with Level 1 being the highest level of trauma care.

What is the difference with emergency nursing and trauma nursing?

I don't 

Are trauma nurses in the ED or ICU? What are the different level of traumas I've seen in other posts? Can someone please break this down for me?

 

Regarding hospital trauma nursing:

ER and ICU.  Two different, physically separated departments.

All ERs see trauma to some extent.  Some ERs are trauma centers as defined in another post.  If you have a significant trauma and are near a trauma center, that is where EMS will bring you.  If you are in an area with no trauma center, you will be brought to the nearest ER. The trauma center will likely have nurses with a higher level of training.  But, most will not have been through a specific, year long trauma nurse program.  Instead, they will have various certifications and in house trainings.

Nurses working in trauma centers also deal with a lot of minor stuff- stuff that should be seen in a doc office, or not seen at all.  The exception would be a nurse in a busy trauma center with the specific assignment of serious trauma.  That takes training and experience, and a lot of time dealing with non-emergent patients and drunks who pooped themselves.

If you haven's spent a lot of time in an ER, try and find one that will let you do some observation time.  You may be surprised at how little time in an ER is devoted to emergencies.  It is a little like being a firefighter- Do don't spend much time running into burning buildings, but when you do, you better have your *** together.

Once a serious trauma is stabilized, it is sent to an ICU.  If the hospital ICU is not equipped to deal with a particular patient, that patient will be shipped to a larger hospital.  Bigger hospitals have multiple ICUs.  Some have designated trauma ICUs.  

Either way, try to arrange observation time in the unit you may work in.  Ultimately you want to do flight nursing, disaster relief, wilderness stuff, etc..  In order to do that, you will need experience.  That means working in a hospital.  

The whole nursing or medic thing is a big choice.  Huge difference.  For the most part, you will get more pay and more options as a nurse.  But, many prefer the Medic route for a lot of reasons.  My background is Guiding and instructing wilderness activities, Ski Patrol, instructing wilderness first aid, EMS, volunteer search and rescue......... My preference is ER nursing.

Different strokes for different folks, lots of options.  Once you finish nursing school and get some experience you will gain some perspective.