What It Takes to Become a Worldwide Air Ambulance Flight Nurse
Our flight nurses play a critical role at MedFlight911 air ambulance. Without them, we wouldn't be able to provide the high level of care for our patients that we do. How are they able to handle such a tough job? A lot has to do with the rigorous training they (along with the rest of our medical flight crew) receive to prepare them to care for patients in the unique air ambulance environment.
Flight nurses must be adaptable (since they deal with so many different types of patients) and comfortable making decisions on a moment's notice (since an air ambulance patient's condition may change rapidly). It's not a career for everyone, but for those with the right mindset, it can be deeply rewarding.
So what should you do if you're interested in becoming a flight nurse? Most flight nurses have the following training:
- Licensed as a registered nurse
- At least 3 years of experience working in a critical care, emergency, or acute nursing environment
- Certifications in Basic Cardiac Life Support (BCLS), Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS), Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS)
- Completed an NRP (Neonatal Resuscitation Program)
- Completed a nationally recognized trauma program, such as Transport Nurse Advanced Trauma Course (TNATC), Basic Trauma Life Support (BTLS), Pre-Hospital Trauma Life Support (PHTLS), or Trauma Nurse Core Curriculum (TNCC)
- Certified as a Certified Flight Registered Nurse (CFRN), Critical Care Registered Nurse (CCRN), Certified Emergency Nurse (CEN)
MedFlight911's flight nurses and paramedics are required to receive similar air medical transport training and complete regular continuing education activities. That ensures that we're able to provide the highest possible level of service to our air ambulance patients.
If you're thinking about pursuing a career as an air ambulance flight nurse, the most important thing is to have a strong background in critical care and emergency nursing. You'll also need to be able to care for a wide variety of patients, from infants to trauma victims to pregnant women to cardiac patients, and feel comfortable evaluating their condition and making treatment decisions on your own.
Yet at the same time, the fact is that the job of a flight nurse is not all life saving and heroics. The job also includes comforting patients and their family members, serving snacks and drinks, helping patients with basic hygiene, and other tasks that a ground ambulance paramedic might find a bit mundane (but are no less important to our mission of making the entire transport experience as seamless and stress-free as possible).
Each day on the job is different for a flight nurse, and they need to be prepared to manage whatever is thrown their way. But for those who have a desire to help people in serious situations get the healthcare they need, it can be a great career choice. Again and again, our flight nurses tell us that helping people is the most rewarding part of their job.
To find out more about MedFlight911's air medical flight crew give us a call at 888-359-1911 or get a no-obligation air ambulance quote here.