Can cardiovascular technology students get ACLS certified?

Protoman2050

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Can cardiovascular technology students get ACLS certified?

I know there are many job listing for CVTs which say "ACLS certification a plus" or "ACLS certification required", so obviously it's possible.

Do I just have to sign up for the two day course?

Any ACLS courses in Long Beach, CA?
 

Aidey

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You may also want to check through your school. They may have a contract with an instructor or a school to teach it.
 

Protoman2050

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You may also want to check through your school. They may have a contract with an instructor or a school to teach it.
I have. I have to be in the program, and I'm currently on the waitlist.

BLS is taught in the Patient Care course, and my Mom (former RN) says it'd be good to get certified in ACLS as well. She says doing BLS beforehand would allow me to concentrate more on the patient care aspect, and let me get through the life-support component more easily.

How long do ACLS and BLS cards last, one year?
 

Aidey

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2 years. I think you have to have BLS first before you take ACLS, but i'm not 100% sure. It may be a good idea to wait until you are in the program to take the class. I don't know what CVT students are taught, but it may be easier to understand the class once you've done the program.
 

Protoman2050

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2 years. I think you have to have BLS first before you take ACLS, but i'm not 100% sure. It may be a good idea to wait until you are in the program to take the class. I don't know what CVT students are taught, but it may be easier to understand the class once you've done the program.
Well, considering I generally know the indications and effects of many of the drugs used, I can read a rhythm strip, and I understand what do to in case of an MI. Shadowing a cardiologist for three months helps a lot.
 

Aidey

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Like I said, I don't know what a CVT knows.

There is also the factor that the class is expensive if your school or employer isn't paying for it. I'm not sure what an initial class costs, but a re-cert class runs around $200 per student. If you take it now, you may have to re-cert before you are even out of school. Why spend the money now, when you already know everything in the class?
 

Protoman2050

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Like I said, I don't know what a CVT knows.

There is also the factor that the class is expensive if your school or employer isn't paying for it. I'm not sure what an initial class costs, but a re-cert class runs around $200 per student. If you take it now, you may have to re-cert before you are even out of school. Why spend the money now, when you already know everything in the class?
Because:

1. I don't know how to set up or maintain IV access, administer IV meds (i know what to use, but I have no idea how to deliver it), or manage an airway...
2. Having the card is important. Who cares how much you know if you can't document it.

I'll be getting BLS certified on the 13th.

Also, learning how to set up and maintain IV access for short-term infusions will help me as a CVT, b/c I can then administer my own contrast and pharmacological stressors.
 

8jimi8

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ACLS does not teach you how to do any of those skills. You need to know all of those skills to perform ACLS.
 

emtbill

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I'm not even sure if BLS is a requirement. When I took ACLS there was a basic CPR station and I believe this was included in lecture as well. The point of ACLS is to teach the current standards of cardiac care by the AHA (i.e. teach you how to implement the algorithms), not the skills to do it. In fact, my corse coordinator was very strict about not allowing the mannequin to be intubated. The laryngoscopes were there just for the student to be familiar with the equipment that may be used in a code. That's really all the class would be good for to the OP: so that he won't be standing around with his thumb up his *** if the patient codes.
 

Protoman2050

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I'm not even sure if BLS is a requirement. When I took ACLS there was a basic CPR station and I believe this was included in lecture as well. The point of ACLS is to teach the current standards of cardiac care by the AHA (i.e. teach you how to implement the algorithms), not the skills to do it. In fact, my corse coordinator was very strict about not allowing the mannequin to be intubated. The laryngoscopes were there just for the student to be familiar with the equipment that may be used in a code. That's really all the class would be good for to the OP: so that he won't be standing around with his thumb up his *** if the patient codes.
Then again, I suppose you can learn how to do anything if you pay close attention.

It doesn't take long to learn a process...I heard an anesthesiologist say he could teach a 15 year old to intubate in 15 minutes.
 

daedalus

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ACLS does not teach how to start an IV or administer IV medication. It does not go over or even briefly review these procedures. It does not teach intubation. The only pre-req is not just BLS for the health care provider. The pre req for ACLS is being a licensed health care professional or being enrolled in an a health care program to get a license where advanced resuscitation will be in your scope of practice.

I am sure you can find a place where they will let you take it if you can pay them. ACLS assumes knowledge of cardiac physiology, pharmacology, IV access, and advanced airway management. It is for people who are going to be required to run a code or participate in a code to a level where their scope of practice will require advanced airway management or medication administration. If this is not you, you do not need ACLS and will get very little from the class besides a wallet biopsy (read: waste of time and money).

Also, you cannot teach intubation in 15 minutes. That is an extremely ignorant statement. I was actually told quite the opposite by an anesthesiologist, who said that it takes around 200 intubations to become competent in the management of all airways and it was around 400 intubations where he felt he mastered airway management. I cannot even begin to stress the importance of mastery of intubation in light of recent studies of prehospital intubation.
 

Protoman2050

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ACLS does not teach how to start an IV or administer IV medication. It does not go over or even briefly review these procedures. It does not teach intubation. The only pre-req is not just BLS for the health care provider. The pre req for ACLS is being a licensed health care professional or being enrolled in an a health care program to get a license where advanced resuscitation will be in your scope of practice.

I am sure you can find a place where they will let you take it if you can pay them. ACLS assumes knowledge of cardiac physiology, pharmacology, IV access, and advanced airway management. It is for people who are going to be required to run a code or participate in a code to a level where their scope of practice will require advanced airway management or medication administration. If this is not you, you do not need ACLS and will get very little from the class besides a wallet biopsy (read: waste of time and money).

Also, you cannot teach intubation in 15 minutes. That is an extremely ignorant statement. I was actually told quite the opposite by an anesthesiologist, who said that it takes around 200 intubations to become competent in the management of all airways and it was around 400 intubations where he felt he mastered airway management. I cannot even begin to stress the importance of mastery of intubation in light of recent studies of prehospital intubation.
Well, some smaller hospitals and physician offices in my area require echocardiographers to be ACLS certified.

And the anesthesiologist said INTUBATION not airway management. He said you can learn the PROCEDURE in only 15 minutes; he followed it up saying that it takes months to learn airway management. Learning a procedure doesn't equal mastery.

I'll wait on ACLS until AFTER my CVT degree is done.

And, my Mom (an RN) starts IVs all the time, and she can show (or at least tell) me how.

I am very good at picking up on things.
 

Aidey

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Sometimes you can hurt your education by picking up too much too early. It can be good to stick with the process, and not try and jump ahead or all over.

Also, an ACLS recert or two ago was at a hospital. They split us into two groups, providers, and non-providers. All the Nurse Practitioners, PAs, MDs and me (the lone paramedic) were in the provider group, and the RNs, techs etc were in the other group.
 
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8jimi8

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Protoman, i appreciate your enthusiasm; however, you need to learn in a class, not have your mom "show you sometime." If your first IV attempt is during a code you will have sincerely misrepresented yourself by getting an ACLS card.
 

Protoman2050

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Protoman, i appreciate your enthusiasm; however, you need to learn in a class, not have your mom "show you sometime." If your first IV attempt is during a code you will have sincerely misrepresented yourself by getting an ACLS card.
I have spoken with IV certification organizations, and they said I can enter an IV cert. class after I graduate from my CVT program, get employed, and perform 10 sticks under MD/RN supervision.

My first IV attempt would most likely be starting an infusion of ECHO contrast or adenosine/dobutamine for a stress test.
 

daedalus

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I have spoken with IV certification organizations, and they said I can enter an IV cert. class after I graduate from my CVT program, get employed, and perform 10 sticks under MD/RN supervision.

My first IV attempt would most likely be starting an infusion of ECHO contrast or adenosine/dobutamine for a stress test.
No, unless starting IVs is part of your scope of practice as an echocardiographer, you cannot do it even if you go pick up another certification.

--csmmedic (formally daedalus)
 

Protoman2050

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No, unless starting IVs is part of your scope of practice as an echocardiographer, you cannot do it even if you go pick up another certification.

--csmmedic (formally daedalus)
The scope of practice for an echocardiographer, given that there is no licensing board (why, I have no idea), is whatever my facilitywants me to do. Some want the ECHO techs to start IVs themselves, other ones will have a nurse come in. More and more ECHO techs are getting certified, and their facilities are letting them start IVs.

http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/echocardiography/message/5905
 
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