ED Nurse as a CCRN

Specialties Emergency


what's your take on an ED nurse - CEN, CPEN re taking CCRN. is ?CCRN relevant to our practice? i work in a level 1 trauma however, we leave the a-lines and swans to the icu. will taking the CCRN be worth it?

Specializes in Critical Care, ED, Cath lab, CTPAC,Trauma.

KNowledge is never a bad thing. I think learning extra about any critical care area is vital to being the best nurse you can be....The CCRN is more than the lines it addresss the treatment of the patient using the information obtained from those lines. There is a strong emphasis on cardiac at times but any critical care nurse can find that information helpful.

As an ED nurse and cardiac heavy critical care nurse I found having a broad knowledge base extremely helpful especially when I made the next step to trauma flight.:)

Specializes in PICU, Sedation/Radiology, PACU.

According to the CCRN website, ED nurses can take the CCRN exam. So your ED experience would count toward experience needed to sit for the exam. However, whether it would be helpful is another question. What is your motivation for taking the exam? Is it to enhance your resume? Make yourself more marketable? Eventually take an ICU position? The exam costs 220 for AACN members and 325 for non-members, so it's a lot of money if you don't really need the credentials. There are also emergency nurse cerficiations and trauma nurse certifications.

Here is the link to FAQ about CCRN:


Some parts you might be most interested in:

Who is eligible to sit for the CCRN certification exam? The CCRN exam is for nurses who work at the bedside of acutely or critically ill patients, regardless of the setting (includes areas such as ICU, CCU, Emergency Department, Trauma Unit, Interventional Radiology/Cardiology, and Critical Care Transport/Flight). Certain other units with high acuity patients may also be eligible; please contact AACN Certification Corporation to inquire.

What areas does the CCRN exam cover?The CCRN exam is weighted most heavily in the areas of Cardiovascular, Pulmonary, Multi-system and Professional Caring and Ethical Practice. Pulmonary questions address ventilator settings and how they would be adjusted according to ABG results. Cardiovascular items include hemodynamic settings, as well as questions about MI, CHF, PE, and IABP. If you are not familiar with or do not have experience in caring for these types of patients, we recommend that you gain the necessary experience before taking the exam.

^^ Notice that in the above question it says that the CCRN covers vent settings and adjusting them based on ABG results. You probably don't do a lot with vents and repeat AGBs in the ED. So you might want to learn more about them before taking the CCRN.

Specializes in FNP.

I took both. No doubt CEN material was more useful in the ED, but CCRN material wasn't unuseful, lol. It just didn't come up directly very often. Knowledge informs every aspect of practice though. I'd only do it if that is your primary motivation.

Yes! Think about all the ICU/CCU pts we hold and take care of for HOURS in the ED when the units are full/staffing isn't available.

Specializes in ER/ICU/STICU.

Sure, if you want to take it, take it. A majority of the test consists of CV and synergy and then everything in between, ie pulmonary, endocrine, gi, etc. You may need to do a lot of studying because there are many questions asking about swan numbers and treatments based on those numbers.

Specializes in EMS, ED, Trauma, CEN, CPEN, TCRN.
Yes! Think about all the ICU/CCU pts we hold and take care of for HOURS in the ED when the units are full/staffing isn't available.


Plus being the education junkie that I am, I always think that more knowledge is a good thing ... even though the CCRN will not help me as an Army nurse in terms of my career, it's still one of my goals.

Specializes in CAPA RN, ED RN.

I took the CCRN a number of years ago just to have it. I put my degrees, CEN and CCRN on my name tag. (The hospital where I worked wanted them all displayed.) It was fun and I learned a lot studying for the CCRN exam. There are differences in the focus of the content but it was worth my time.

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