What Do Trauma Nurses Do?
The main duties and Responsibilities of a trauma nurse include providing acute care in the specialty section of hospitals. They may either stay fixed in a certain health care facility or go around in mobile units so as to offer prompt services when required. Sometimes, the trauma nurses may even work out of an airborne unit in an attempt to reduce the time gap in responding to certain calls. Most often, trauma nurses are the first to deal with the patient. In such a short span of time, they may not have enough information about the patient and the incident. Therefore, it is the duty of the trauma nurses to handle the patients with care and sensitivity and try to stabilize their condition. Trauma nurses come into play whenever there has been an emergency arising out of poison administration, fire, car accidents, drowning and injuries during natural disasters like earthquakes or landslides.
Trauma Nurse Job Description
Their job profile of the trauma nurses requires them to be ready at all times. As there is no time for a disaster to strike, the trauma nurses will have less time for preparation. Therefore, they should be skilled enough to make accurate examinations as quick as possible. Then a nurse should also be able to build trust in the shortest time possible. This may require them to overcome the cultural and language barriers on a very regular basis.
Trauma Nurse Practitioner Job Description
The trauma nurse practitioners are assigned jobs in the Emergency Department. They are required to be prepared at all times in a quick and efficient execution of the tasks whenever a critical patient is brought in. They may work in collaboration with various health care providers, including entire emergency crews, surgeons, emergency physicians and more. Their main role is to help in the stabilization of patients and increase their chances of survival.
The CDC or the Center for Disease Control and Prevention has reported that the largest causes of death in the demographics up till the age 44 are due to accidents and injuries. It has been estimated that a person dies of accidental injuries every three minutes. Even if the patients do survive, they are likely to suffer from various lifelong physical and mental physicians. The trauma nurses try to prevent the onset of lifelong medical problems by taking the correct steps when the injury is still new.
Trauma ICU Nurse Job Description
Trauma ICU nurses are always working under extreme pressure. They should have the ability to stay calm even during the trying times and work efficiently even as the situation remains chaotic. Even the slightest amount of mistake can have a huge impact on the medical condition of the patient. Therefore, the ICU nurses should be skilled in managing more than one task at a time and always work with a high degree of caution. The trauma ICU nurses should also be well versed in giving advanced life support such as cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), starting IVs and administering blood, fluids and other medications to the patients.
It is also very essential for the trauma nurses to be able to collaborate with their medical teams. The main goal is to towards the stabilization of the patient, following which, they can return to their general duties. There are different levels of trauma centers. These are designated as 1 to 5 and the job description for the nurses could vary slightly depending on the level they are working on. However, all the trauma nurses are required to possess skills such as physical stamina, ability to think quickly and critically, good interpersonal skills, multitasking skills, accurate observation and assessment, composure and a strong personality in order to cope up with the ongoing at work.
In some cases, the trauma nurses may also hold education programs emphasizing on public health. They may spread awareness about safety and preventive measures for avoiding injuries through accidents such as wearing helmets while riding. They may also reach out to particular sections of people, such as drivers, teens, elderly or people working under a certain class of occupation for teaching new skills and improving safety and health.
Trauma Nurse Education And Certification
Trauma nurses are always working with patients who are in a critical health condition. Therefore, it is very important for them to hold the qualifying credentials. Apart from the basic nursing degree, they are also required to hold certifications in the Basic Life Support as well as the Advanced Cardiac Life Support and sometimes, the Pediatric Advanced Life Support. The nurses can take up these programs under their own financing or in some cases, the employers may cover the cost of the cost of tuitions provided the nurses offer them their services after the completion of the course.
The amount of certification required by the nurses depends on the place where they are working. The job descriptions, as well as the area of work for both the trauma nurses as well as the emergency nurses, are very close to each other. Therefore, the trauma nurses may also be required to have some emergency training. The Trauma Nursing Core Course only takes two days during which the candidates are given classroom education as well as the hands-on practicum. Upon the completion of the course, they are awarded certification.
As can be seen, the trauma nurses may be employed in different areas and the Education requirement may vary accordingly. For example, trauma nurses specializing in children are required to take up the Emergency Nursing Pediatric Course. This course trains the nurses in accurately recognizing the medical emergencies in case of children. The certification remains valid up to 4 years, after which it is to be renewed.
It is also possible for the trauma nurses to specialize in flight nursing. In this case, they should have the training to respond effectively to medical emergencies mid-air or during disasters. The credential of a Certified Flight Registered Nurse is awarded by the Board of Certification for Emergency Nursing. Although not mandatory, a two years experience is seen as favorable for becoming a CFRN. The certification remains valid for a period of 4 years, after which it should be renewed to avoid lapses.
How Long Does It Take To Be A Trauma Nurse?
Starting from the associate degree to being a fully certified trauma nurse can take around 5 years. Even after the certification, the nurses are required to stay in touch with various affairs and updates of trauma nursing and have their certification renewed every four years, failing which it can lapse.
Trauma Nurse Salary
The ER Trauma Nurse salary can depend on a number of factors including education, size of the organization, certification and years of experience. A survey conducted in 2016 by the US Bureau of Labour Statistics showed that the average Yearly salary for the top 10% of ER trauma nurses in the highest earning category was $102,990 while the lowest 10% were seen to earn an amount of $47,120. The area of work and the demand and supply mechanics for trauma nurses in the particular area also had a huge influence in determining the overall salary. It was seen that nurses working in hospitals or nursing homes earned an average hourly salary of $29.92 which would amount to approximately $62,230 per year. Currently, they have median salaries that can range between $45,745 and $95,529. 1
There can also be other factors such as the subsidies, cost of living in the given area and pay differentials that can play a role in determining the final earning. For example, the pay differentials added to the basic salary for night shifts, evening shifts, and extra hours, mentoring amateurs or charging duties can make a huge difference to the final amount of payment. Nurses with a BSN or an MSN degree are also more likely to have a higher salary range than the others. Similar benefits may also be enjoyed if the nurses are specializing in a certain filed instead of offering the simple basic services. Furthermore, there are facilities such as bonuses and overtime time Wages that can help in increasing the total pay.
Therefore, while considering the rate at which trauma nurses get paid, it is important to consider all the compensations offered as well as other facilities such as whether the employer offers health insurance and financing for continuing education, number of off days, traveling cost and the flexibility of the work schedule. It is normal to have higher salaries in the urban areas and even higher in metropolitan cities. However, these areas also have a very high cost of living which compensates for the increase in the wage rate.
Nurses who are looking to make higher earnings through employment as a trauma nurse should make relevant research for different areas independently. This could help in deciding the future course of a career in the field and whether it would be worthwhile to relocate to a new area. It should be noted that the cost of living comprises of everything from housing to taxes to transportation and still a lot of other things.
The US Bureau has listed the following as the top five in the United States.
Highest Trauma Nurse Salary Paying States
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The starting salary for trauma nurses can vary depending on the area of employment. However, it is likely to be the average annual salary. Nursing looking for better career prospects and higher salary can also advance their education and become an acute care nurse practitioner. In this case, they are required to choose an area of specialization after completing the postgraduate course. The trauma nurse practitioner salary can be much higher as compared to the emergency trauma nurses. Currently, they have a median annual salary of $99,820. 3 The job description includes working in the critical care units, emergency departments, burn centers and more. The salaries of the trauma nurse practitioners are also likely to vary across different location and are influenced by the same factors that determine the salaries for trauma nurses.
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