Ground transport nurses play crucial roles in ‘on scene’ responses, and even more frequently during interfacility transfers, where critical care patients – often with highly complex medical needs – are transferred to and from higher level facilities in specially equipped ambulances. These vehicles, which approximate an ICU and/or emergency department on wheels, have the capacity to carry multiple, highly advanced pieces of equipment to meet each critical care patient’s unique condition and needs.
“Multiple factors, underscored this past year by the pandemic, have led to a very long-overdue recognition of the need for nurses who possess critical care expertise, specifically in the ground transport environment,” said BCEN CEO Janie Schumaker. “The bottom line is that having a CTRN-certified nurse onboard during these critical transitions can make a big, and even lifesaving, difference.”
Specially trained teams make a difference
To earn the CTRN, nurses must demonstrate advanced clinical knowledge and expertise in critical care, plus all aspects of the ground transport environment, including safety, mastery of a wide range of complex protocols, equipment and apparatus, and the ability to manage and mitigate the unique effects that ground travel can have on patients and their conditions.
‘Grounded in Excellence: The CTRN’ describes:
- Why moving patients is risky business, and why specially trained teams make a difference.
- Why the number and complexity of interfacility transfers have increased so substantially, and what that means for nurses, patients and facilities.
- How ground transport supports an overall wider range of patients due to the ability to accommodate more and larger equipment and an extended medical team – and sometimes a family member too.
- Why nurses’ scope of practice, educational foundation and clinical expertise are among the many reasons nurses, especially CTRN-certified nurses, are the top choice to staff and lead transport teams.
Critical care ground transport is vital
“In every healthcare system around the world, critical care ground transport is a vital link,” said Schumaker. “Nurses with a demonstrated ability to deliver advanced care and preserve the continuity of complex care for patients on the move by ground keep that link strong.”