Hands-on skills course

Specialties Critical


Specializes in ER/Trauma.


I’m primarily an ER/trauma nurse that has been in admin for the past couple years (though still working PRN at freestandings). 

I’m looking into some opportunities that would be back at the bedside in more of a critical care setting. I know some of those roles will have heavy hands on orientation, but for my leading pick I’m not sure what the orientation would be like in that respect.

Since I’ve not been very hands on lately, my skills have definitely dipped. Does anyone know of an in-person refresher course that focuses on/includes hands on skills/monitors/vents/etc.? I’m OK with traveling to take the course, as well as dropping some money on it.

The closest I have found is perhaps a CCEMTP course.



Specializes in Critical Care, Capacity/Bed Management.

To be honest I have not heard of any refresher classes that will go over critical care skills. However, if you are looking to get into critical care (not ED), a reputable hospital will offer you 6-8 weeks of in-unit orientation, due to your experience in ED/Trauma. 

During that time you would be introduced to ventilator management, critical care drip titration (thanks to TJC things have gotten much stricter), and general management of typical ICU diagnosis. 


Best of Luck!


Specializes in ER/Trauma.

Thank you for the feedback! I'm looking at a couple hospitals that offer a critical care fellowship for experienced nurses, but the job I am most interested in, and am in the interview process for, is not a fellowship (though they do accept ED nurses). As you said, I would hope the orientation would be thorough, but I am not sure what to expect. Thankfully, I have had at least some exposure to everything you mentioned over the years - but since I have mostly been in an office the past 3 years, before I go too far down the hiring process, I would like to try and get some hands on again, especially on invasive monitors and drips, as well as things like IABP, CRRT, etc. that I've learned about, but have scant experience with.

In the meantime, I have been collected some of the resources commonly suggested on here, and will keep looking!

Specializes in Critical Care, Capacity/Bed Management.

Exposure definitely helps, most of the hospitals in my area will not assign devices to new critical care nurses regardless of previous experience until they have about a year in. Also most of the hospitals will have the device rep come and conduct a formal 4-6 hour training session with a group of nurses. Devices being IABP, CRRT, Impella, etc. 

If you want to just familiarize yourself with those devices there are some great videos on YouTube that discuss the different modalities of CRRT and when they are appropriate. The Impella device has some very good (free) CEUs you can do on their website. 

Hope that helps

+ Add a Comment