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Oncology, Research
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anc33's Latest Activity

  1. I too have a BA in Anthro. I did my thesis on odontometrics in forensic anthropology and dreamed of one day working at the Smithsonian. Then I married a grad student in forensics and put my dream on the back burner (there is not a great demand for forensic anthropologists). While I don't draw from much of my anthro education I do think it gave me a much deeper understanding of cultural awareness and how it directly impacts health. I agree with Michelle05 that there is not much that one can do with an anthro degree (BA level). However, if it is a topic that you are passionate about then you should shoot for the PhD. I do know some masters level anthropologists but those jobs are scarce. Looking back, I am glad things worked out as they did as I love my job and the endless opportunities it affords (and it doesn't hurt that I make more than many of my old anthro profs).
  2. anc33

    non-clinical nursing research?

    Have you ever looked at the Presidential Management Fellowship program through the NIH? NIH's Presidential Management Fellows (PMF) Program Sounds like it may be a step in the right direction if you like utilization, access, etc research.
  3. anc33

    new graduate research nurse

    Most likely no. When you are hired into a new research position in general it is because you either have a good handle on the disease processes involved (or just broad knowledge if you are it is general med) or because you have a solid research background. That being said, the NIH clinical center is one place where they do hire new grads, BSNs mostly. They have a very structured training program where you start out doing patient care and, as you work your way up the ladder, eventually move into more administrative roles. Clinical experience, whether that is hospital or clinic based, is invaluable to coordinators. Really prior experience along with a solid understanding of research design is what separates good and great coordinators. As for what type of research organization is best... that depends on your career aspirations. My advice is to find an area of nursing you really love. Get 1-2 years or more of hands on patient care experience preferably in a hospital/organization that has an active research program. Network with MDs and research staff. If they know you are interested in becoming a coordinator you may be one of the first people they go to when a position opens up.
  4. anc33

    Career Path

    You don't need to be certified to be a monitor although most monitors take their CCRA after two years on the job. Getting a CRA job is all about networking with the project managers and monitors for your current trials. I actually really love my job as a study coordinator. I get to do a bit of everything including writing protocols. I know I will outgrow this job eventually. If I haven't found a management position where I currently work before then I would love to make the jump to FDA safety or regulatory officer.
  5. anc33

    Question to research nurses out there.

    I don't mean to sound snide but why do you think this job may be perfect for you if you don't know much about the field? Research is an area that is known to chew up and spit nurses out. This is usually for one of two reasons; the person not being a good fit for the job (confident, independent, extremely detail oriented, etc) or having no orientation or mentor to learn from. When we are looking to hire new staff we prefer people with some kind of research background as that piece is much harder to learn than the clinical piece. Please look into some old threads to get some more details. I would implore you to shadow a coordinator for a few days to get better insight into the field. I have had multiple students tag along on my day and I always ask if the experience matched their expectations. I have never once heard a "yes" come out of their mouths.
  6. anc33

    Any clinical research nurses out there?

    The patient care aspect of the job is highly variable depending on how your unit runs and your position. My first research job was 75% hands on care and 25% paperwork. That was in phase I where protocols are very procedure heavy (lots of blood draws, ECGs, etc). In my curring position I only spend 25% of my time with patients. When I see them in clinic I interview them to assess AEs, order labs and other tests, prep their drug orders, do teaching, administer any protocol specific cognitive testing, etc. It is very watered down version of direct patient care which a lot of people dislike. On the other hand I know of many research nurse jobs where they are very patient care focused, especially those in hospital based research units.
  7. anc33

    Any clinical research nurses out there?

    I have been in this field for over 5 years now and feel that there are numerous opportunities for growth. I am personally trying to decide what my next move is but there are so many directions I can see my self going in. There is also protocol development, project management, regulatory, grants, working for IRBs, patient advocacy, QA/QC (internally), monitoring... Also, research jobs vary greatly depending on whether you work in a clinic, academic institution, phase I units, cooperative group, NIH or pharma. Most of us on here work on drug studies. Device studies are their own animal and require specialized knowledge. I used to work in a phase I unit where the bulk of my job was patient care and data collection/entry. In my current position I manage most aspects of my trials. We do have regulatory and grants personnel but ultimately I have to know what is going on with my trials at all times. I have recently started writing protocols and love doing that. One day I would like to move into a position were I could help with INDs and NDAs and other regulatory oversight. I really think this is a superb field and see myself here for the rest of my career.
  8. anc33

    Comparing salaries...

    From what I have found research coordinator positions pay less than floor positions. I have been pretty lucky with salary however one of my colleagues makes slightly less than I do and she has been a nurse for 15+ yrs. She would definitely make more in the hospital. So if starting RN salaries are in the 35-40K range in your state then the number you quoted sounds par for the course.
  9. anc33

    Comparing salaries...

    OCN and CCRC.
  10. anc33

    Comparing salaries...

    Around 59K in FL with 5 years of research experience and two specialty certifications. I used to make more in phase I but I love my current docs and patients.
  11. anc33

    Curious About a New Procedure

    I have only seen this done in the OR. We have one particular surgeon who likes using the technique for patients with carcinomatosis but it is not done very often.
  12. anc33

    Research Coordinators with CCRC or eligible for the CCRC?

    There are actually two research certifications for coordinators, CCRC (ACRP) and CCRP (SOCRA). I personally have ACRP certification however I do not have many colleagues that are certified through either organization. When I worked previously in phase I all of my fellow nurses either held certification or were studying for the test. I do think certification is beneficial. Just studying for the exam itself and learning all of the ins and outs of the federal regs has made me a much better coordinator. I feel like I have a better global understanding of the field than many people I currently work with. I would encourage anyone who is serious about research to pursue certification.
  13. anc33

    Help please! Do florida rns get "paid in sunshine"?

    You may be able to get in the $30 range in places like Miami, Tampa, Orlando and some other south Fl cities. Outside of there you may be out of luck. In my area, RNs at the big hospital are capped at $35 or so. Of course that does not include differential. However, the highest most places will hire you in at is their mid-range. Good luck!
  14. anc33

    Question about Job Title

    FYI job title means very little. Yes, the CRA title has been traditionally linked with monitors. For example, to become a CCRA you have to be an auditor of some type. I have noticed more and more facilities using the CRA title for research assistants, data managers, IRB coordinators or anyone else who has an "ancillary" role in clinical research. I have even seen some non-nurse coordinators referred to as CRAs. Coordinators also have many titles. I am a RN specialist, others are research nurses, CRCs or study coordinators. As a side note, the majority of RN research coordinators have the title of data manager in many European countries. So basically you have to go by the job description as there really isn't any universally accepted job titles research.
  15. Our practicum consisted of an entire semester of following a staff nurse for all of their shifts. My preceptor worked 12hr night shifts and I was right there with her. If she picked up overtime so did I. By the time I graduated I was used to working 4 night shifts in a row. I was actually very well prepared for the floor after graduation as were most of my classmates. This was part of an accelerated BSN program. I just wanted to throw that in there since I know many people think we have less clinical hours than ASN or traditional BSN programs.