Nurse Practitioner Job Blast: Cardiology Round Up

The school year is right around the corner. Classrooms here in Tennessee will be full in a matter of just two weeks. Target and Walmart are fully stocked with #2 pencils and fresh sheets of lined notebook paper. Despite the heat, kids are stocking up on jeans, boots, and jackets for fall. I have always loved the clean slate that comes with the 'Back to School' season. New outfits, notebooks, and the chance to press the reset button on life, are both refreshing and motivating. As an adult, there are far fewer occasions for such a feeling. 

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Pros and Cons of Accelerated Nurse Practitioner Programs

Recently, a MidlevelU reader posted a question on the message board inquiring about my experience in a nurse practitioner bridge program. She noted that, while I have several articles on the topic of programs for students without a background in healthcare, I hadn’t shared much about my personal experience. Guilty as charged. So, today I’ve decided to pull together my thoughts on the advantages and disadvantages of accelerated programs for NPs, based on my own experiences. 

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The Battle Heats Up Over NP Scope of Practice at the VA

It's no secret that the Veteran's Health Administration has taken some heat lately. In 2014, major problems within the organization's healthcare system were exposed, as United States Armed Forces vets died while waiting for care at a Phoenix, AZ facility. Criticism of healthcare facilities for veterans extended nationwide, leaving administrators scrambling for solutions to the widespread problem. 

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Weekend Wrap Up 7.22.16

Happy Friday! How has your week been? Mine has been busy, busy, busy, here in Nashville prepping for the upcoming Midlevels for the Medically Underserved Kickoff, as well as working in the emergency department. Temperatures here in Tennessee are topping out around the 100 degree mark these days, so seeking refuge indoors with my laptop is a welcome pastime. If you, too, are seeking some relief from the heat, crank up the AC and check out this week's more interesting medical news stories to get you through to the weekend. 

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Why I Chose Nurse Practitioner School Over Medical School

I always imagined I would go to medical school. A biology major, I was on the premed track throughout the majority of my undergrad college experience. As graduation neared, however, I began to question my career path. Was I really passionate enough about medicine to dedicate the next 10 years or so to my studies? Medical school, residency, and a possible fellowship seemed like a daunting commitment. I wasn’t sure, so I decided to look at the other options out there. 

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Summer Medicine: Evaluation & Treatment of Snakebites

Hailing from the Pacific Northwest, where snakes are common, but not a health hazard, I rarely think about the possibility of snakebite emergencies. Now, living in Tennessee, things are different. There are a number of venomous snakes indigenous to the United States. Summertime, when outdoor activities, like wading in creeks and working in fields is common, snakes do pose a potentially serious danger. The other day while I was working in the emergency department, a patient arrived with the first serious snakebite we have seen this summer, prompting me to brush up on my envenomation know-how. 

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Charitable Care Clinics Rely on Nurse Practitioner Volunteers

With student loan payments looming and work schedules demanding of our time, as nurse practitioners, it can be difficult to find the time and energy to give back. But, there are many clinics out there that rely on volunteer providers to care for their patients. Last month, I talked with the Tennessee Charitable Care Network, one such entity that supports community health clinics offering services for low-income and uninsured individuals, as well as underserved populations in the state. Part of the organization's responsibility is to help identify providers willing to donate their time to such clinics.

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CRNA Salaries by State: How Does Your Compensation Compare?

Nurse anesthetists are top earners in the advanced practice field. While average CRNA salaries consistently top those for nurse practitioners and physician assistants, there is also significant variability when it comes to compensation within the profession itself. Local laws and the job market, for example, affect salaries for nurse anesthetists across state lines. How do average CRNA salaries compare by state?

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The 'How Nurse Practitioners Actually Get a Paycheck' Flowchart

When I first started my nurse practitioner education, I didn't think much about billing and coding. My focus was on learning and retaining clinical content rather than material related to the business side of medicine. As I proceeded through my NP program clinicals, however,I became aware of the complicated system by which charts are coded. One afternoon, I was even assigned by a preceptor to contact insurance companies to collect on past due payments. 

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5 Pieces of Advice for Being a Competitive Accelerated NP Program Applicant

Whatever you call them, accelerated nurse practitioner programs, bridge programs, or MEPN programs, are a quick way for students without a healthcare background to become nurse practitioners (see more about How to Become a Nurse Practitioner Without Nursing Experience). These programs are typically two to three years long, and confer both a RN and MSN degrees. There are very few of these programs in the country, meaning a competitive admissions process for interested applicants. How do you make yourself stand out among the pack?

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5 Online Trauma CME Resources for Nurse Practitioners

The hospital where I work has recently upped it's trauma level status. So, it has come to my attention, there is now a trauma-related continuing education requirement for nurse practitioners working in the emergency department. My continuing education hours necessary for certification have already been completed, so, in the interest of maximizing my budget, I prefer to meet this new trauma requirement at low or no cost. Fortunately, I was able to identify a few budget-friendly trauma CME resources available to nurse practitioners online. 

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Weekend Wrap Up 7.14.16

Happy (almost) weekend! I'm excited for a well-balanced time at home over the next few days. A few social events and a handful of projects around the house should keep me just the right amount of busy. If you've got a little down time this afternoon, kick off your weekend by checking out this week's more interesting medical news. 

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