Critical care nursing is basically the area of nursing in which a nurse has to take care of extremely sick or unstable patients after extensive medical treatment, surgery or due to life threatening illnesses. In hospitals, there is intensive care for the patients who are critically sick. They are given all sorts of medications and other supportive therapies along with the intensive monitoring and care of a highly experienced team of nurses. The patients are usually admitted in the Intensive Care Unit or the ICU, where all the necessary steps are taken to save the life of the patient. In a critical care situation, the nurses are well trained to handle all kinds of emergencies including dealing with life threatening situations.
A critical care nurse is specialized in one of the three areas – PN, CRNA or NP. They provide specialized services to the critical sick and the emergency or critical injured patients. The most common critical illnesses are cancer, sepsis (severe blood circulation), heart attacks, respiratory distress syndrome, DVT, COPD, and acute respiratory distress syndrome. These conditions require a high level of specialized treatment by critical nurses who have complete training in their respective fields.
The critical care nurses are also involved in the patient's recovery. They use various methods to help the patients recover and to improve their overall health. Critical nursing also involves proper communication skills to ensure that the patients understand the exact treatment they need and what will happen to them after the treatments. Communication is also an important part of patient care by critical care nurses.
Critical care nurses must have a deep understanding of the laws of science, anatomy and physiology along with advanced emergency and trauma management skills. They should have excellent communication skills and be able to make effective judgments and decisions under difficult circumstances. Critical care nurses must also possess high moral fiber and self-esteem as they work under very stressful conditions. All these skills and qualities make critical care nurses perform effectively. One can undergo training for critical care nursing in many hospitals and the requirements to become a critical care nurse are becoming increasingly tough.
In the United States, the CCN has become one of the basic nursing qualifications required to become a registered nurse (RN). There are several CCN courses available through online as well as on-campus trainings. Most critical care nurses complete the critical care nursing course after completing the RN degree. In order to get a CCN, the critical care nurse needs to successfully pass three critical Illness Approval NREMT or National Requirements for Registered Nurses examination.
It is very important that the critical care nurses adhere to all the rules and regulations set forth by hospital management regarding the safekeeping of patients. They are expected to handle patients who are critically ill, injured or suffering from other serious illness. The patients should be monitored at all times by trained critical care nurses and emergency medical services personnel. Emergency response teams should be alerted immediately upon arrival of such patients.