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Experienced CRNA...ask me anything

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by 06crna 06crna (Member)

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On 5/19/2019 at 2:15 PM, HELENABURG said:

Thinking ahead, if I do complete a BSN, I'm kind of worried of my back, because I know you have to practice a year of nursing in ICU or trauma and then do the CRNA program. Is this a must requirement or can you go straight into a CRNA program? I know you have to have at least a year of nursing experience, but does the one year experience have to be in ICU or trauma? Can it be in another field, like pediatrics or NICU?

What do you think? Could someone with Degenerative Disc Disease be able to handle CRNA school as well as being a CRNA? Is it really taxing on the body? How is the 1 year nursing experience before the CRNA program? Is it stressful?

Hi @HELENABURG,

Not only is over a year of experience as an ICU RN a “must requirement,” it is essential experience to become a competent CRNA. Don’t get stuck on the requirements to get into a CRNA program. If you really want to become a CRNA then you will really want to first practice as an ICU RN and learn as much as you can. Depending on your experience, ICU nursing carries over into the daily practice of a CRNA. That’s why you want good experience, the kind that applies. All of that experience counts... meaning it takes 4 years of a BSN, 2-4+ years ICU nursing, then 2-3 yeas in a program to become a CRNA. That’s at least 8 years of preparation to provide safe anesthesia care. That’s what it takes to become a safe anesthesia provider. That’s what you want when you or your loved one are undergoing surgery and relying on an anesthesia provider to protect your life.

Some schools accept PICU/NICU. Some do not. That said 90% of the patients you will be taking care of are adults. So back to my previous point of wanting applicable experience... PICU/NICU is not the best. You’ll be better prepared for school and practice as a CRNA with adult ICU experience.

Adult ICU nursing is physically taxing. As a MICU RN you will be turning your intubated/sedated/paralyzed patients every 2 hours. In any ICU patients require repositioning. A lot of the time they are overweight. In any ICU you will have to code patients on a regular basis. Also very physically taxing. CRNAs transfer patients all day, pushing heavy beds, etc. So yes, it is a physical job.

Lastly, all of this is stressful. These jobs are for those who work well under pressure. I would refer back to the posts on this thread to get a good idea of the mental endurance it takes to be a CRNA.

Hope this helps.

Edited by SalinaA

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CoffeeScrubsAndRubberGloves is a ASN, BSN, RN and specializes in CardioThoracic Surgical ICU.

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On 7/26/2017 at 8:05 PM, 06crna said:

Okay...If you've read my posts you know that I will be retiring soon.

Now is your chance to ask a practicing CRNA anything.

12 years of experience from solo rural independent to medical-direction urban ACT. Former Chief and Clinical Coordinator of SRNAs.

I will not reveal my identity, specific locations, employers, or programs.

Anything else...ask away.

I’ve been working on my BSN to apply to CRNA school. I am 1 8 week session away from completing my BSN. I currently am a charge nurse in a Thoracic/Vascular surgical ICU at a level one teaching hospital in Florida. Our floor specializes in lung transplants and vascular surgeries. Most of our cases are sent from other hospitals that can’t handle the complex cases. We also specialize in VA and VV ECMO. I’ve been on that unit for a little more than a year. Before that I was an Emergency/Trauma nurse in the shock/trauma area for 3 years. So most of my experience there was also very acute. I also had 1 year of Oncology and 1 year of Medical IMC/ICU at the same facility.  I realized I wanted to be a CRNA after the birth of my 1 year old when I had a very exceptional encounter with a CRNA and knew in that instant I wanted to be that person for others. To make a long story short my ASN GPA was only 3.2 but I’ve managed to keep my BSN at 4.0. I wonder if will be enough to make me competitive for top schools... any advice or words of wisdom would be greatly appreciated. 

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ProgressiveThinking has 7 years experience and specializes in SRNA.

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On 6/25/2019 at 10:43 AM, CoffeeScrubsAndRubberGloves said:

I’ve been working on my BSN to apply to CRNA school. I am 1 8 week session away from completing my BSN. I currently am a charge nurse in a Thoracic/Vascular surgical ICU at a level one teaching hospital in Florida. Our floor specializes in lung transplants and vascular surgeries. Most of our cases are sent from other hospitals that can’t handle the complex cases. We also specialize in VA and VV ECMO. I’ve been on that unit for a little more than a year. Before that I was an Emergency/Trauma nurse in the shock/trauma area for 3 years. So most of my experience there was also very acute. I also had 1 year of Oncology and 1 year of Medical IMC/ICU at the same facility.  I realized I wanted to be a CRNA after the birth of my 1 year old when I had a very exceptional encounter with a CRNA and knew in that instant I wanted to be that person for others. To make a long story short my ASN GPA was only 3.2 but I’ve managed to keep my BSN at 4.0. I wonder if will be enough to make me competitive for top schools... any advice or words of wisdom would be greatly appreciated. 

What is a "top school?"

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CoffeeScrubsAndRubberGloves is a ASN, BSN, RN and specializes in CardioThoracic Surgical ICU.

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5 hours ago, ProgressiveThinking said:

What is a "top school?"

I’ve been looking into schools like Emory, Duke, Buffalo, University of Pennsylvania, VCU. All schools that have been reported as being consider in high ranking according to their programs. 

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Obiwanwasabi has 1 years experience.

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Hi Y'all,

I am currently a nursing student at TWU, weekend program and will be graduating next summer.  My situation is that I had prior BS degree in Bio (2005) with very low GPA.  I got my MHA degree in 2014, with 3.3 GPA, and now with nursing, and I think I will be hitting around 3.4.  Would most school look at the total over GPA, or mostly focus on the nursing GPA?  In addition, I would need to retake chem classes since those are more than 10 years old.  

I am concerned that I can't make it in with that GPA.  What are y'all's input?  Any comment would be greatly appreciated.  

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All aspects of your GPA are borderline, or worse.  Not being a jerk, just being very direct and objective.  You will need to take several hard science classes, Grad level, and show you can do well.  And you should for yourself.  Don't invest a year of your blood, sweat, tears, and life, only to have to drop out and have a 50K bill for nothing.

 

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CoffeeScrubsAndRubberGloves is a ASN, BSN, RN and specializes in CardioThoracic Surgical ICU.

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32 minutes ago, BigPappaCRNA said:

All aspects of your GPA are borderline, or worse.  Not being a jerk, just being very direct and objective.  You will need to take several hard science classes, Grad level, and show you can do well.  And you should for yourself.  Don't invest a year of your blood, sweat, tears, and life, only to have to drop out and have a 50K bill for nothing.

 

I appreciate you being candid, but I wonder why you say my GPA is borderline or worse? I am also very aware of the bill and challenge school brings. I appreciate the advice and will definitely consider it. I would hope this is something an interview panel would mention before accepting someone into their school as I know dropping out also greatly effects their numbers. 

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On 7/21/2019 at 11:10 AM, CoffeeScrubsAndRubberGloves said:

I appreciate you being candid, but I wonder why you say my GPA is borderline or worse? I am also very aware of the bill and challenge school brings. I appreciate the advice and will definitely consider it. I would hope this is something an interview panel would mention before accepting someone into their school as I know dropping out also greatly effects their numbers. 

Because your initial Bio degree was low.  Your existing graduate degree grades are quite low (3.3) and you only have a 3.4 GPA in your BSN, which is the easiest part yet, from your three academic forays.  The number of excellent candidates, who just do not have any wholes in their resumes grows every year.  Your grades, as they currently sit, will likely only get you into a large puppy mill program, which will be extremely expensive, and highly impersonal.  You are just not competitive as things currently are for any of the really top schools around the country.  And you will just have to show that you are able to get top grades in a hard, science based, graduate level class.

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My name is Soni Uccellini, and I am a Part-Time MBA student at the University of Minnesota, Carlson School of Management Medical Industry Leadership Institute. For my class project, I am working with an inventor to determine the potential value of their device. It is meant to improve the airway management during deep monitored care anesthesia. 

I'm hoping to get more information on the needs and challenges of the patient, certified nurse anesthetist and physician in this area, and I'm reaching out to experts across the country. Thank you in advance for taking time out of your precious day to help me with this!

Kindly,

https://umn.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_9yG7RT2FxUrus3H

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CoffeeScrubsAndRubberGloves is a ASN, BSN, RN and specializes in CardioThoracic Surgical ICU.

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On 7/23/2019 at 10:54 AM, BigPappaCRNA said:

Because your initial Bio degree was low.  Your existing graduate degree grades are quite low (3.3) and you only have a 3.4 GPA in your BSN, which is the easiest part yet, from your three academic forays.  The number of excellent candidates, who just do not have any wholes in their resumes grows every year.  Your grades, as they currently sit, will likely only get you into a large puppy mill program, which will be extremely expensive, and highly impersonal.  You are just not competitive as things currently are for any of the really top schools around the country.  And you will just have to show that you are able to get top grades in a hard, science based, graduate level class.

I think you may have me confused with a different writer. I completed my BSN with a 4.0. Sure, I had a 3.3 in my ADN, but I realized that was an issue and stepped up for my bachelors. Also took statistics in my BSN and got an A. I feel like maybe a 4.0 is about as good as I can do in a BSN. I mean if you feel like I need to still take a grad level science that's always an option, but I have a very strong background in nursing for almost 7 years now. Also, application period ends Oct 1 of this year, so I don't feel as though i will be able to add a science course before that deadline. I am however planning to take an biochem class just for a refresher and prep for school. This is because unlike some of competition, I actually care what is happening to my patient, and want to make sure that they not only are comfortable, but safe. 

Also feel like expecting a working single mother at the time in an ADN program is a much different animal than a 19 year old with no responsibility other than school. Sure there's no excuses, and I am more than willing to prove I am capable. I also will say that I am a totally different person today than I was 8 years ago, with a support system, confidence and a passion. I would hope that would make a difference. And I would hope that the 4.0 I got in my BSN and not a 3.3 would make some kind of difference.

Just my thoughts, no hard feelings. Thanks for being real.

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AlyCruise specializes in SICU RN.

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Hello, are you still answering questions? 

- Aly

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