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ECCO to teach CCU


Specializes in Perianesthesia. Has 30 years experience.

I am curious about others' opinions regarding the ECCO course from the AACN's website for teaching critical care nursing to nurses new to the ICU.

What are your thoughts regarding using this to shorten the orientation period/decrease hands on learning in the ICU setting? My facility is leaning towards utilizing this for 'new' new hires.


Specializes in Trauma,ER,CCU/OHU/Nsg Ed/Nsg Research. Has 15 years experience.

The facility I used to work in critical care used it, but it wasn't used to shorten orientation or to decrease hands on learning- it was used in addition to the bedside preceptorship. Two weeks of classes were given, using the modules, and then a test was given to weed out anyone who wouldn't make it. This was prior to the 6 months preceptorship for new nurses. It's beyond me why any facility would use ECCO to shorten the hands on learning process.


Specializes in Cardiac Nursing, ICU.

I am a new nurse. The facility where I work requires that we complete ECCO, while interning in the ICU. We have a six month orientation period, the ecco is four hours a week. Personally, I think it's a great program. It provides the new nurse with basic knowledge. The program is broken down into systems, each system has a in depth review of a&p, disorders, clinical management, diagnostic procedures, assessment techniques, etc. It's interactive and self-paced. It's a great refresher from nursing school. Also, after completion of a module you're tested on the info, you have to score above 90% or something like that. Helpful but v e r y l o n g..... In regards to your question...as a new nurse in an icu setting...there should in no way be policies/measures to shorten the new nurses' orientation. This would be horrible, deplorable. If anything ECCO should be used as an adjunct to clinical experience...we need to be able to put theory into practice.

deeDawntee, RN

Specializes in Travel Nursing, ICU, tele, etc. Has 12 years experience.

I had the ECCO program and personally as a night nurse, it was great to get my "classroom" content and testing done on my own time (we could access it at home) and so I did most of it at night when I am most alert etc. As far as the content itself, I think it was OK. Very dry but all the information was there. Unfortunately, there was no interaction, as there would be in an actual classroom...

As far as ECCO shortening bedside precepting, I can't imagine it replacing anything that one needs to know at the bedside. It only replaces a great deal of the theory classroom content. At my facility, we also had classroom content that was more practice focused. If anyone is trying to say it is a substitute for being precepted they are trying to pull the wool over your eyes!


Specializes in Anesthesia, CTICU. Has 6 years experience.

At the crit care fellowship I'm in, ECCO is utilized as an introduction to the topics we will be covering that week. We generally do 6-8 hrs per week of ECCO, along with 2 hands-on modules working with equipment introduced in ECCO in a small group setting (10 ppl), followed by an end of week sim-man capstone simulation. Integrating all the info with multiple strategies like this is a terrific way to understand and retain the knowledge and skills ECCO teaches.

I went thru it as a new hire. Our hospital system incorporates it into a 12 week "academy". Modules in the morning, then powerpoints in the afternoon Which our hospital threw together. We had 1 day of clinicals in the unit every other week. So by the time we would "visit" our unit, our brains had been pickeled by copius powerpoint presentations and boring modules on the computer.

I felt like I had to learn basic clinical skills all over each time I went to my unit. My confidence level plummeted, I began to question why I went into nursing and renewed my Rx for Paxil!

Im sure if it was administed in a way OTHER than which I had to endure it, it may have actually enhanced my transition from new grad to working in the ICU.

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