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    Kaplan University - KHE

    MS in Nursing

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    Medical Careers Institute

    RN to BSN

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    Fortis Institute

    Medical Assistant

Flight/Transport Nurse

A flight/ transport nurse is a highly trained nurse providing critical care to patients before they can be admitted to a hospital. Flight/ transport nurses have to be very skilled as they have to make decisions in emergencies very quickly, as some of their decisions will mean the difference between life and death for patients. These nurses also work with patients in remote areas who cant get to a hospital in time or are on their way to the hospital. Disaster sites, such as those of car accidents and scenes of natural disasters are other areas where flight/ transport nurses have to work.

Sometimes, flight/ transport nurses also travel with private patients suffering from dangerous or life-threatening conditions to ensure their in-flight safety. They keep assessing patients’ needs during the flight, request appropriate medications and supplies and provide optimal nursing care till the destination. Their communication skills need to be very strong as well, since they have to communicate with the medical crew on the ground. They need to be experts in the intensive care skills, such as the use of mechanical ventilation or administering vasoactive medication, etc. They should be able to work well with teams, the teams they work with ranging from hospitals and medical disaster teams, to airlines and individual patients.

• Becoming a Flight/ Transport Nurse

After becoming a registered nurse – acquiring a two- or four- year associate or bachelor degree in nursing and clearing the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) –, these nurses must have three to five years of postgraduate training in emergency care, intensive care or critical care.

Thereby one can apply for the flight nurse programme, some of which require nurses to have an Emergency Medical Technician-Basic or Emergency Medical Technician-Paramedic certification. Neonatal resuscitation as well as pediatric, advanced cardiac, and pre-hospital trauma life supports are some of the qualifications that flight nurses ought to have. Generally, they are also required to have a minimum of five years experience in a critical care hospital setting, such as in an ICU or ER. In order to become a Certified Flight Registered Nurse (CFRNs), these nurses have to pass a certification exam administered by the American Association of Critical Care Nurses (AACN).

• Job and Salary Prospects

The job outlook for this field of nursing is very positive thanks to an aging population and the unfortunate and unforeseen occurrence of natural disasters. The working conditions for flight nurses can be quite challenging, however. Stormy weather, landslides, etc are some of the dangerous climatic conditions that these nurses may often have to work in. The median salary they get paid hovers between $60,000 to $75,000 per year, depending on the hiring facility, experience level, education and certification.

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