Take the First Step Toward Your EMS Career Now!

​The Exciting Life Of Flight Nurses

A flight nurse is a trained healthcare professional who is required to be on a plane or helicopter taking care of critically injured patients during transportation. This career path is a great choice for someone who loves the idea of treating patients but doesn't want to be in a hospital all day long. Of course, it's not all exotic locations where someone has gotten hurt skiing or surfing. You're actually far more likely to be assisting patients from one hospital facility to another. During transport, you need to be ready for anything; some of your patients will be in very dire situations.

Have These Characteristics

If you're thinking about pursuing this job, then you'll need to be able to stay calm in emergency situations. You must thrive in chaos and anticipate your next move while still staying flexible enough to change if there's an unexpected shift in a person's status. You're working without the benefit of a fully equipped hospital, so you'll need to be creative and resourceful in using what is available to you.

A flight nurse must also know how to communicate. With a critical patient, you have so many things to do in order to deliver him or her safely into the hands of the doctors. There are people both in the air and on the ground who need to know about what's happening, so to take this job, multitasking must be in your wheelhouse. You'll also be dealing with nervous patients and stressful situations, so it's important that you be both empathetic and professional. It's a rare person who can maintain a relationship with someone while still conveying that they have the situation entirely under control.

Get This Training

You'll need experience in critical care as an RN in a general hospital. In school and the first few years of your career, you'll want to concentrate on skills like rapid sequence oral intubation as well as trauma care (you may need your BTLS, or Basic Trauma Life Support, certification), needle placement, and emergency fluid draining. You may also need your Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) certification and to have credentials in emergency pediatric care. You'll need to dedicate yourself to keeping up with your skills through extra courses, workshops, and conferences.

Your Impact On Others

As an EMS professional, you have a tremendous opportunity to make a huge difference in an extremely short amount of time. It may be wise for you to volunteer as an EMT before any heavy medical training so you can get a sense of how you react when time isn't on you or your patient's side. There's a lot to learn of course about the medical field, but to a certain extent, being able to handle an emergency situation can't be taught. You can find out if you have the skills as an EMT before committing to a longer career as a nurse.


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