Options, Flight RN vs. ACNP vs. CRNA in Air force

  1. Hi everyone,

    I have been a critical care RN for 5 years and graduated last summer with my ACNP (acute care NP). I'm currently not working as a ACNP because I chose to work as a flight RN (civilian) for experience and a little excitement. I also joined the Air National Guard as a flight RN (46F) in an AES unit, but I'm still waiting on my schools (hopefully will happen in the next 6 months). My current thoughts are: 1) stay in the ANG for a couple years and try to do a couple of deployments as a flight nurse and continue doing my civilian flight nurse job, then applying for CRNA school and never working as an ACNP 2) considering joining active duty as an ACNP now and applying for CRNA school 3) applying for CRNA school now (afraid I won't get any flight time in AF)

    The factors directing my decisions are: 1) my age-35 2) no experience as an ACNP 3) there are ACNP jobs, but I've always wanted to work as a flight RN and it is difficult to find per diem or part-time ACNP jobs without experience 3) I have a lot of debt, and being active duty would make it difficult to pay my bills unless there was a sizable bonus

    I'm currently a 1LT in the CA ANG with 6 years of prior service in the Army Reserves as a medic.

    Any advice, direction, or resources are appreciated. Thank you!
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    About olijam

    Joined: Dec '04; Posts: 13


  3. by   razorshark
    Get accepted into a civilian CRNA program and apply for HPSP. You must be able to graduated before age 41. We don't have a fiscal requirement for ACNPs or FNs. Ensure you are able to get a DD368, Conditional Release, from your unit. Good luck.

  4. by   Cursed Irishman
    Civilian CRNA programs are eligible for HPSP? Do you have a reference/linky for that? All I can find is it applying to m.d. programs.
  5. by   razorshark
    The Air Force offers about 25-30 full scholarships each fiscal year for certain MSN programs, mostly 2-year, some 3-year. I submit several HPSP applications a year. HPSP is available for MD/DO, MSN, Dental, and several allied health fields.

  6. by   wtbcrna
    You need to be careful about going to a civilian CRNA school and then joining the military. There are a lot of civilian schools that won't teach you how to be independent provider or have you become proficient with regional anesthesia (ultrasound and nerve stim guidance techniques). The military nurse anesthesia programs make sure that you are able to function as an independent provider and are proficient in regional anesthesia.

    Going from new grad CRNA to staff CRNA I had two days orientation in the OR and then within two weeks I was on call as the only CRNA in house covering OB, OR cases, ER etc. not many CRNA schools will teach to do this.

    The other thing is once you go AD all your time will go towards retirement including your time at AFIT.
  7. by   flightrnp
    Just wondering what you decided to do after all. I've applied to an ACNP MSN program and I've looked at joining the Air Force Reserve to help pay for school. Any thoughts?