Since I was a child, I have always dreamed of becoming a nurse. When I was 18, I became a Certified Nursing Assistant, and though I have had several other jobs since then, I always found myself getting back into nursing. In my early thirties, in addition to having my two children I became a Certified EKG technician as well as a Certified Phlebotomist. I then pursued a job in a community hospital that I have now worked at for the past 5 years.
In addition to working as a Phlebotomist, I work on the telemetry floor as a Certified Nursing Assistant where I hold my permanent positions. I work per diem Medical Assisting at the Wound Center and have also been given the opportunity to float to the Emergency Room and the Critical care unit to help with various jobs assisting the nurses. I have found that the most fascinating out of all my experience at the hospital has been in the Critical Care unit. It’s interesting, stimulating fast paced work.
I enjoy learning new information all the time. I have a thirst for medical knowledge and a hunger for helping people. In what I have witnessed, critical care nurses are the only support systems that some patients have, with my naturally nurturing demeanor and ability to comfort people in their time of need, I think I would be a good fit for this role. I love a good challenge and enjoy a change of pace every day; these are my reasons why I am very interested in becoming a Critical Care Nurse.
Though nurses caring for the critically ill have been led by several influential people and groups including Florence Nightingale and the American Red Cross in the mid 1800’s, it was not until nearly 100 years later that the AACN was formed. AACN is the Association for Critical Care Nurses. “In the 1960’s, the founders of critical care nursing and AACN valued and fought for humane, effective, collaborative, and accessible care for the nations critically ill citizens. ” The earlier generation nurses came together and solely focused on the safest effective ways to care for the critically ill.
“In 1969, nurses imagined AACN as an inclusive organization committed to investigation, education, and communication about caring for the critically ill. That is precisely the organization that we know today. ” The AACN is an organization that is a “patient centered health care system” where the nurses deliver their excellence in patient care for critically ill patients and families and where the nurses have the opportunity to make their optimal contribution. (The American Association of Critical Care Nurses, 2013) Once
an individual becomes a licensed Registered Nurse, they can then train to become a critical care nurse. “Although certification is not required to practice as a critical care nurse, many choose to become certified through the AACN. ” It is more desirable for hospitals throughout the United States for hiring nurses that are certified through the AACN. Individuals that are aspiring to become a critical care nurse should know that they will spend long hours on their feet and need to be able to lift patients with use of good body mechanics and lifting techniques.
Nurses should have good stamina and be ready to be on their toes in the event of an emergency. (The American Association of Critical Care Nurses, 2013) Critically ill patients are those at high risk for actual or potential life threatening health problems and those that are critically injured. Critical Care nurses provide nursing care for these critically ill and seriously injured patients who require complex assessment, high intensity therapies and interventions, and continuous nursing attentiveness.
Critical care nurses perform many roles for patients including bedside clinician, comforting patients, educator and advocate. Some critically ill patients can do little for themselves asking for help or administering medications, therefore the patients must rely on their critical care nurses to be their eyes, ears, and voice. The critical care nurse must have the ability to think quickly, have skills to multi-task effectively, have a wealth of knowledge in critical care conditions and have the ability to motivate patients to get better.
A positive attitude suited for teamwork is a must, considering the nurses will be working closely with doctors, surgeons, respiratory therapists, physical therapists as well as their nursing team working together, bringing all resources together to make sure the patients are getting the highest quality of care and ensure to make a good recovery. Advancing in critical care nursing is achievable when the nurses address an interest in a specific specialty. The nurse is usually required to have at least two years’ experience with these specific types of patients.
For example Cardiac Surgery Certification (CSC) allows critical care nurses to help cardiac surgery patients recuperate, and can work in post anesthesia care units. Critical care nurses also train to a master’s level degree in nursing to earn Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Certification (ACNPC). This certification is more focused on the nurse’s clinical judgment. Using independent and dependent nursing functions, the critical care nurse works in collaboration with members of the health care team to provide the best holistic care in a timely manner in order to aid of the critically ill patients recovery or to support in a peaceful death.
Independently the nurse works on his/her own nursing process for the patient, while working dependently with physicians and surgeons for the official medical diagnosis. “Professionals are defined as individuals expected to display competent and skillful behaviors in alignment with their profession. ” When most nurses are asked to identify their core values, they are consistent throughout the profession. They include honesty, integrity, and human dignity, equality of patients, the want to prevent and alleviate suffering, and the want to improve the quality of life for all.
In my experience in working in the critical care unit, these core values are clearly represented to me with the upmost professionalism. I have a clear outlook of what I want for me and my children in the future. As an aspiring nursing student, with a lifelong dream to become a nurse, I now see my dream soaring into critical care nursing as well. (www. nursetogether. com, 2008-2013) Bibliography www. nursetogether. com. (2008-2013). (Nurse Together LLC) Retrieved from Nursetogether empowerment. encouragement. opportunities. http://ccn.
aacnjournals. org/. (2013). Retrieved from Critical Care Nurse The journal for high acuity, progressive and critical care nursing. The American Association of Critical Care Nurses. (2013). Retrieved from http://www. aacn. org/. Chitty, Kay Kittrell; Black, Beth Perry. (2011). Professional Nursing Concepts & Challenges (6 ed. ). Maryland Heights, Missouri: Saunders Elsevier. Finkelman, Anita; Kenner, Carole;. (2013). Professional Nursing Concepts Competencies for Quality Leadership (2 ed. ). Burlington, MA, USA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.