Telemetry is regarded as a specialist field in nursing. A telemetry nurse practitioner looks after patients that need monitoring. Patients can have heart illness, heart disease complications, heart failure, or other medical conditions that necessitate constant telemetry monitoring.
This includes looking after individuals who have had a cardiac procedure, such as a stent placed in their heart. They also assist patients recovering from coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) surgery.
In general, these nurses need to be skilled in using high-tech equipment. They also need to be able to comprehend vital data effectively. But how do you become a telemetry nurse?
Well, you need particular skills and educational requirements to venture into this field of nursing. Now, let’s explore this career path in more detail.
Becoming a Telemetry Nurse Practitioner
If you’re a registered nurse who desires to specialize in Telemetry, you will need to take further training.
First, you must learn how to utilize an electrocardiogram machine. You use it to monitor a patient’s heart and assist a doctor in diagnosing irregularities. You’ll also need advanced cardiac life support training to respond if a patient goes into cardiac arrest.
In most hospitals, registered nurse practitioners who have passed the NCLEX-RN can serve as telemetry nurses. Nurses with a BSN or ADN are both qualified.
However, keep in mind that many hospitals are now hiring only BSN-educated nurses. While it is not currently required, nurses are urged to continue their education because a BSN may become mandatory in the future.
There are some certifications to take into consideration as well.
The Academy of Medical-Surgical Nurses (AMSN) provides certification for medical-surgical nurses.
For telemetry nurses who are already certified in a nationally acknowledged clinical nursing specialty, the American Association for Critical Care Nurses (AACN) provides two sub-specialty certificates.
These sub-specialty certificates are:
The CMC, which is a certification program for nurses who give direct care to cardiac patients who are acutely or dangerously unwell.
The CSC, which is for nurses who provide direct patient care to cardiac surgery patients within the first 48 hours after surgery.
However, it is advisable to gain solid grounding as a typical telemetry nurse before jumping into these sub-specialties.
The Benefits of Gaining Telemetry Certification
With official online telemetry courses available, it’s well worth considering getting certified. As a current practicing nurse, it can enhance your resume in ways you never thought possible.
Even if Telemetry isn’t your primary aim in nursing, it’s still worth adding to your resume. Learning the technical side of nursing can benefit your general nursing career in so many ways. The knowledge you learn could even be the difference between saving someone’s life or not!
The great thing is that you can switch to try new aspects of the profession throughout your nursing career. You never know; you might have hidden talents in medical Telemetry.
Where Does a Telemetry Nurses Work?
In most cases, telemetry nurses work in a hospital setting. They look after patients who are no longer in the ICU but still require continuous monitoring of their vital signs. Post-surgery, is a good example of this. For such instances, a telemetry unit is available, and this is where a telemetry nurse works.
An essential job necessity is outstanding assessment abilities and the ability to apply knowledge quickly. Patients in a telemetry ward can swiftly deteriorate, and the nurse must be ready to respond.
Telemetry nurses can also work in clinics and some outpatient facilities. They can also provide in-home care for patients who need to be monitored around the clock for clinical trials or other diagnostic purposes.
What Do They Do?
A telemetry nurse is trained to interpret and monitor the results of electrocardiograms (EKGs). These machines convert the electrical impulses of the heart into a readable rhythm. Telemetry nurses are trained to detect potentially dangerous variations in these rhythms and to alert the on-call doctor.
They also keep track of other vital signs, including blood pressure and oxygen levels. Telemetry nurses may help with procedures like therapies or cardioversions for various cardiac emergencies if they discover abnormal heart rhythms.
Here’s a summary of some of the duties a telemetry nurse might have:
- Watches EKG output and notifies the doctor if anything changes.
- Responds to those who are suffering from heart pain.
- Perform numerous diagnostic tests.
- Checks vital signs such as oxygen levels, breathing patterns, and blood pressure
- Provides medication when needed.
- Helps the doctor with various heart treatments and therapies.
- Provides cardiac health education to patients.
Yet, there are many more responsibilities that a telemetry nurse may have to undertake. It differs depending on the medical institution you work at.
The Salary and Future of Telemetry Nursing
While many factors influence a nurse’s pay, such as geography and education, the typical compensation for a telemetry nurse is around $58,000. There is variation of about $48,000 to $84,000.
Telemetry nurses have a bright future ahead of them, with positions available due to a general nursing shortage. Because of the specialized training required to enter this specialist area of registered nursing, there is a significant demand for telemetry nurses.
Cardiac disorders being one of the most common health conditions in the United States. Thus, telemetry nursing is a gratifying and reliable career option for RNs wishing to pursue an in-demand specialty.
Expand Your Horizons in Nursing
Whether you want to specialize in Telemetry or want to boost your resume, telemetry certification is well worth consideration. It is, after all, a fascinating subject for any nurse practitioner.
We are the National Telemetry Association. If you’re interested in this nursing field, we invite you to look at all levels of our official certifications in Telemetry. Also, if you are a current practicing nurse, we have a tailor-made industry-recognized telemetry certification for you!