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ER, Surg. ICU
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Coopster1 specializes in ER, Surg. ICU.

Certified ER nurse, Surgical ICU nurse and clinical instructor with a history in EMS. Been doing this kind of thing since 1994! Daddy of 2 with a beautiful RN wife.

Coopster1's Latest Activity

  1. Coopster1

    New Clinical Instructor / advice

    While I was a BSN trained RN (when I started), my experience had all been ER. Of course I found myself teaching a sophomore M/S clinical. I had excellent support from my Faculty of Record. But the night before I found myself pouring through my old Med-surg book, stressing about what I didn’t think I knew about floor nursing. The first morning with my students, I walked in and saw that most of them were wide-eyed, one was bouncing her knee so nervously, she almost left the chair. In that instant, I remembered something fundamental, stand-by wisdom in 3...2...1: No matter what you think you know about clinical instruction, you always know more about being a nurse than they do at this point. Have confidence in your knowledge and experiences. When they run up and ask you questions (looking for the quick answer), pose their question right back at them - make them look it up, that’s how they’ll learn it. And finally, I always took a few minutes in post-conference to teach on a relative topic. This was to enhance what they were learning from lecture. Make it a fun, but not a lose learning environment. You’ll be great.
  2. How are other educators handling annual competencies? When I was hospital based, all my staff would come in rotate through stations for a couple hours and be done. I know some hospitals do them via online modules. I have staff all over the country. I’m looking for ideas for them to meet annual requirements. Some could just roll in with hospital staff where they’re at, but others may not be working during that timeframe. Looking for any of your ideas or experience.
  3. Need help on this. I'm trying to justify having a minimum number of years experience for agency/travel nurses. For example, our current standard is you have to have two years of recent (within 6 months) experience in your specialty (ED, ICU, MS, PCU). The question I need an answer for is "why?". Looking for any research sources....I'm coming up dry.
  4. Coopster1

    Why does everyone need to be ACLS cert?

    As most of us probably know, theory and practice are radically different. It's wonderful if your facility makes ACLS an option for all staff to get. Should it be mandatory? Probably not. Unless you use it, you truly lose it. I have seen nurses who've had ACLS for years (but never/rarely had to use it) completely gap mentally during a code...the worst possible time to not remember what you're doing. When you couple a med-surg RN who's been in one code a year with a resident/intern who happens to pick the short straw that month, the pt will suffer. Our facility uses nurses from the ICU's to cover codes, dividing the hospital between the 3 ICU's. That way we have code savy nurses responding and if there's more than one code, the other icu can back us up. Codes are already difficult situations, inexperience makes it worse. Working a code is more than just getting an ACLS card. For the pt's sake, it takes an experienced nurse to strongly suggest/guide the resident's orders. Otherwise you end up pushing any drug that you have, shocking asystole (pointless) and ending up with the same dismal outcome unless you're lucky that night. I think we should all be doing excellent CPR before worrying about ACLS. I'm all for every nurse having ACLS, but it shouldn't be forced upon us. If everyone is required to have it, the concept of a code team or having specific units respond could vanish...outcome poor! Get your ACLS and then you can have some idea how to help out in a code, what to expect, etc. No offense, but if I drop in the hospital, I want people who run codes every week working on me over those who do it say once or twice a year. And to the poster who said that if you can't handle a code, find somewhere else to work (I paraphrase)...Some RN's are really good at pt care, not at critical situations. That's why they choose to work med-surg, etc. and not er/icu. I'm an ICU/ER RN...I love the rush of crisis, but I know it's not for everybody. Hope you can take this in stride...If you can't, I'm OK with that too..

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