Can any CST's who have furthered their education relate their experience coming from tech to RN? I am a CST readying to enter nursing school and want to know what I'm in for. Did anything about the process surprise you? Was it what you thought it'd be? Did you only have eyes for the OR, or consider other avenues of nursing? Any info would be most helpful........
Dec 19, '06
this will probably open a can of worms but it is the truth.
this is for possible st students as well as a reply to walkingon.
this is at the facility where i work only. policies vary slightly from place to place. it is my personal opinion.
money and respect is the only reason to return to school. i have an associate in st and a cst getting ready to sit for a certification surgical assisting (additional schooling) but sadly our scale is about 1/4 behind that of an rn’s. i am not quite 1/2 way up on the st pay scale but a starting rn that i have to help on the job (can not perform independently) makes more green than me. i don't mind helping, it is for the patient's safety, it is just a slap in the face.
as far as the patient; i could not be more of a patient advocate than what i am now. my responsibilities will be the close to the same (some would say ....but you would be licensed now…..they treat the lpns the same way here). there are differences which include but not limited to; patient assessment, administer meds, documentation etc…
respect... while my employer say that they respect us and our degree, they do not. it shows in actions. they have clinical ladders for the nurses (rn) that we (csts) can do according to policy and job descriptions but we are not allowed to do the ladder. it is well within our scope of practice. there is a bonus of $1,000 to $3,000 as well as a slight pay increase for each step climbed on the ladder (well…we could do it but we would not receive any compensation). this is only one of many examples that i could give.
as far as classes being different, my prerequisites transfer toward the nursing. anatomy, physiology, pharmacology, microbiology of microorganisms, psychology etc… were all nursing equivalence. i only need the core classes and clinical.
most csts will not tell you this but if you are just starting, there are many more doors that can be opened in nursing. remember that most hospital administrators are rns and policies are set for rns.
the only problem that i see is that if you love scrubbing you may not do much. most facilities around where i work are going to csts to save on money. this means that the tech will scrub and you will circulate. not at all facilities are doing this but it is a growing trend. i must note that there are some all rn surgery centers and ors.
i could go on and on but you need to really think about what you want. if you are going for an associate, i would advise you go for an asn and sit for the state boards for rn.
csts can advance their careers in healthcare management, just not as easily.
Last edit by ewattsjt on Dec 19, '06