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Advice on nursing...

Enid and Adam Robinson trauma-list@trauma.org
Wed, 26 Jun 2002 09:55:58 +1000

Hello Russ,

I can't comment on how you get your Nursing Degree because the system here
in Australia is different.  However, I would encourage you to seriously
think about doing some on a Medical Ward or Nursing Home.   I know these
places are not exciting, but you learn some very valuable lessons about
NURSING - such as the importance of pressure area care, patience, how to
settle someone suffering from dementia, and I could go on.  You spend a lot
of time with patients suffering airway disease, renal failure, CVA's,
diabetes, etc, and you spend a lot of time with their families which taught
me valuable lessons in how to deal with them sensitively, how best to talk
about death and dying, how to offer support, encouragement and hope.

I don't think you'll have any trouble moving into trauma nursing.  You make
it your goal and work towards it.  Don't let your age worry you.  I started
my nursing degree as a mature age student with four small children, took
five years of study part time, and have only been nursing for seven years -
and look at me!! (Very scary).

Enid, CNS
Emergency Department,
Blacktown Hospital, Sydney
----- Original Message -----
From: Russ Pasley <rpasley@marmotmountain.com>
To: <trauma-list@trauma.org>
Sent: Wednesday, June 26, 2002 7:15 AM
Subject: Advice on nursing...

> Greetings,
> I have a quick question to shoot out at any trauma/emergency room nurses
> that would be kind enough to take a moment to offer me some advice or
> insight.
> I am about to pursue a career in nursing, more specifically working in
> trauma.  I have had experience in the past as an EMT with the National
> Service as a ranger.  Working on certain incidents in Yellowstone made me
> realize that I wanted to follow a career path in trauma nursing.  I worked
> well with my fellow colleagues (rangers, nurses, and doctor) , was
> respected by them, and encouraged to pursue a career in emergency
> My question is how does one work their way into trauma?  I do not want to
> get into nursing to be a floor nurse in a hospital, work in a retirement
> home, or in a doctor's office.  Is there a danger of being "pigeon-holed"
> early in your career?  Right now I am starting to volunteer in the ER at
> San Francisco General.  This is the main trauma center for this side of
> bay.  My plan is to reinstate my EMT and to then work my way into a tech
> position in the ER if possible. This way while I am in school the ER staff
> will get to know me, my character, and my abilities.  Does this sound like
> a good plan?
> The only other question is that of an Associate's degree vs a Bachelor's
> degree.  Both qualify you to sit for the state exam for an RN.  For the AA
> I have my prerequisite classes done, can get into a program now, and be
> done in 4 semesters.  Pursuing the BS will take quite a bit longer.  I'm
> and want to start things happening right now!  I guess what I am asking is
> will the AA hinder my goals as opposed to getting the BS?
> Again, I would be very appreciative to any of you out there who could take
> a bit of time out of your busy lives to offer me some advice.
> Thanks much and peace to you,
> Russ Pasley
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