Paramedic to RN? Is it worth it?

Tachy55

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My dream is to be a full time firefighter/ paramedic, but recently I have taken a lot of interest into the field of nursing and the appeal of the clinical setting, as well as the further medical knowledge (and the extra income wouldn't hurt). I know of a few full time guys that have went on to get their RN, and are working part time as nurses in the ED (Id personally love to work in the ED). I was just wondering if it would be best to get BSN, or just ADN? I have heard of paramedic to RN bridges, but those kind of sound "sketchy" if you will. Any advice would be appreciated
 

EKUEMT

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Most hospitals are requiring BSN at hire or within 3-5 of hire date. I work at a Level I Trauma Center and it's a huge hospital. The require a BSN within 5 years of your hire date. The BSN classes after your ADN are basically all management classes. I've heard of a few bridge programs but I don't know the validity or worth of them. The one close to my hometown closed and the medics that I know who went through it said it was basically hell on earth and way too hard.
 

VentMonkey

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Or you could also search this forum, and see how many other threads come up. I feel like this question is asked rather frequently.
 

Akulahawk

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My dream is to be a full time firefighter/ paramedic, but recently I have taken a lot of interest into the field of nursing and the appeal of the clinical setting, as well as the further medical knowledge (and the extra income wouldn't hurt). I know of a few full time guys that have went on to get their RN, and are working part time as nurses in the ED (Id personally love to work in the ED). I was just wondering if it would be best to get BSN, or just ADN? I have heard of paramedic to RN bridges, but those kind of sound "sketchy" if you will. Any advice would be appreciated
I think it all really depends upon the path you want your career to take. I'm licensed both as a Paramedic and as an RN. I, and a few others here are as well, and can give you a bit of insight into what likely paths you will find.

I would say that if your dream is to be a FT FF/P and then go for nursing, then go for it. Just know that if you take that route, you'll likely have to wait a LONG time before you go to Nursing School because their schedule is typically non-negotiable. You must attend class and clinical when they tell you to. Unless your FF gig is going to allow you to shift trade so that you can attend all classes and clinical days, it's going to be very tough to make it all the way through. Yes, there are "distance learning" options out there but not all States will license nurses that got their initial nursing education that way. One other thing to remember is that FT FF work and FT school is VERY demanding. You WILL be tired/exhausted pretty much all the time. Same goes for simply becoming a Paramedic first, working FT and going to nursing school FT. This path takes a few years just because you'll need some seniority to allow the shift trading easily.

The other way (and one that I'd recommend for your goals/situation) is that you should consider doing nursing first, get that done and get the RN license. Then take an EMT class (if you haven't already) and look at bridging to Paramedic from RN. The skills base isn't all that different but the thought processes used will be. Once you're done with your Paramedic license, then go for FF. This path will likely be much shorter by around a couple years than the other way. Then you'll have to decide then if you really want to do FF/P or if you want to do RN or some FT/PT mix of them

I'm an ED RN and once things settle down again over the next year or so, I'll look at getting back into the field part time. In my case, I was able to do both Paramedic and RN through the traditional ways but that was because I was able to study for RN school while at work (which was a non-med job at that time). Glad I did it that way. Trust me when I say that both schools are about equally tough. The big difference between the two is that Paramedic School turns out a specialist. Nursing School turns out a generalist. The thought processes used truly are different. While one can learn the other, the generalist training allows for an easier transition between various specialty gigs.
 

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