Transplant Nurse

Mar
2015
12

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Be an Organ Transplant Nurse

If you are a nurse in New York and would like to advise and see the patient through an organ transplant, now is the time. The need for medical professionals in this field grows by the day. However there is quite a bit of experience and training needed for these types of nurse roles in New York.

This nursing specialization requires additional education, training and experience and involves much more than just working in the operating room when an organ transplant takes place.

Education

In addition to one’s basic nursing credentials the American Board for Transplant Certification provides transplant credentials to the nurses who wish to work in transplantation. The following are the credentials that are offered by the ABTC:

  • Transplant Preservationist
  • Clinical Transplant Nurse
  • Procurement Transplant Coordinator

Candidates for these certifications must pass uniform exams to receive the credential.

Responsibilities

  • Assists with all the various responsibilities and activities during the transplant surgery.
  • Meets the patient in pre-op and performs all pre-op activities such as vitals, IV hookup, and medication passage including the anesthesia.
  • Be a full-fledged member of the transplant team.
  • Do whatever the team needs you to do to provide the patient with the best possible care.

Lifestyle

When you are a transplant nurse your entire life is impacted. Your work dictates your lifestyle rather than your lifestyle dictating where and how you work. Finding a healthy balance between work and play is essential to transplant nurses who are often on call 24 hours a day/7 days a week.

The changes in the national health care system are also impacting the lifestyle of the transplant nurse as cuts in revenue have forced greater caseloads and a need for the nurse practitioner. The RN with a Clinical Transplant Nurse Certification might now want to pursue an advanced degree to become a Nurse Practitioner who is certified for organ transplantation.

The nurse who pursues this field must have a passion for it. It can be incredibly rewarding and terribly heartbreaking. Pediatric organ transplantation is the most challenging of all in this respect. The Pediatric Transplant Nurse or Pediatric Transplant Nurse-Practitioner must have a lot of internal fortitude, compassion and strength.

The rewards are as obvious as the downside. Transplant nurses see their young patients struggle so hard, see them receive a new organ and a miraculous recovery, only to see organs rejected and children relapse. Some patients do extremely well and you get to watch them grow and thrive – giving you the greatest of rewards. Remember however that people do die while waiting for an organ to become available and that adds to the heartbreaking aspects of the job.

Conclusion

Being a transplant nurse is a rewarding and heartbreaking at the same time. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the field is expected to grow by 22% by 2018 with a minimum salary of about $62,000. However, the salaries are based on locations and cost of living. It also depends on certifications and experience. The minimum salary in a place like Chicago is around $76,000.

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