Telemetry Nursing

Telemetry is a specialized branch of nursing that deals with patients who suffer from many different heart abnormalities. Those who work in this specialty provide professional nursing assessment, intervention, and evaluation that they have acquired through nursing education. Tasks associated with the telemetry nursing profession include connecting patients to those machines that monitor things like heart rate, blood pressure, oxygen, respiratory rate, and that actively transmit the details about heart rhythms to remote computers.

Prerequisites For Entering Telemetry Nursing

The most common route into nursing is through the completion of a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Nursing (BSN), Associate’s Degree in Nursing (ASN), or a Nursing Diploma through an accredited educational institution. A degree program in nursing commonly includes courses in anatomy and physiology, chemistry, physics, microbiology, nutrition, pathology, and many other topics. A Bachelor’s Degree typically requires the longest time commitment and lasts up to four years while an Associate’s Degree and Nursing Diploma generally last between two and three years. In addition to classroom instruction, programs introduce students to the healthcare setting through hands-on clinical experience.

The level of formal education that a nurse has completed will often determine the types of employment positions that can be pursued as well as the patient care responsibilities that can be performed. Employer expectations are important for determining whether or not one will be considered for telemetry nursing and some applicants may discover that they will need to complete a bachelor’s or master’s degree and a nursing specialist certification exam before entering this area of practice. For this reason, nurses may complete a number of years in general practice before transitioning into a specialty field like cardiology.

Licensing and Certification Requirements

All 50 states in the US require nurses to complete an approved educational program followed by a state or national examination prior to becoming licensed to practice. The most common exam used to assess competency is known as the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). This exam is widely used throughout the US to make state licensing decisions and it must be passed before an individual will be considered for a position in telemetry nursing. Additional state licensing requirements along with competency standards within the cardiology department may vary and it is important for aspiring nurses to contact local employers about unique requirements in their area.

After graduating from an educational program and passing the NCLEX-RN, an employer may require applicants to the telemetry nursing job opening to pass either the Progressive Care Nurse Certification Exam (PCCN) or the Tele-ICU Acute/Critical Care Nursing Certification Exam (CCRN-E) provided by the nationally recognized American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN). The PCCN examination is for nurses who work in intermediate care, step-down, telemetry, transitional care, direct patient observation, and emergency care.

The CCRN-E was developed for nurses who monitor acute or critically ill patients in a virtual ICU or an e-ICU in a remote location. Individuals who intend to take either of these exams are expected to have extensive experience as an RN or APRN in order to become eligible.

Patient Care Responsibilities For Telemetry Nursing Professionals

Nurses are required to accept responsibility for many tasks that serve to support the health and well-being of patients as well as contribute to the overall efforts of the medical team to prevent illness and promote health. Some of the most common responsibilities that a nurse has include assessing, planning, implementing, and evaluating patient care plans; preparing and administering medications; reporting adverse reactions; monitoring and adjusting equipment; providing bedside care; delivering patient education; documenting medical information; vital sign collection; and supervising unlicensed personnel. In addition to standard responsibilities required of a nurse, telemetry nursing professionals can be expected to…

  • Connect patients to monitoring equipment
  • Identify irregular heart rhythms
  • Administer electrocardiograms
  • Alert physicians to abnormalities
  • Operate and maintain cardiology equipment
  • Assist with invasive procedures
  • Perform echocardiograms and stress testing

Although this is not a comprehensive list of the job responsibilities that can be expected in the telemetry nursing specialty, it does provide a basic outline of the kind of specialized knowledge and skills that are required in order to become successful in the profession. The healthcare sector can be an extremely demanding place to work given the current level of demand for care and the shortage of qualified nurses and physicians. Those who are considering a career in cardiovascular care must have solid critical thinking skills and compassion towards patients.

Other qualities that are beneficial for working in a fast-paced healthcare setting include strong decision-making skills, an attention to detail, and solid interpersonal communication skills. The delivery of cardiac care to the public depends on the collaborative efforts of different types of medical professionals who may or may not be effective communicators and it is often the nurses job to coordinate the efforts of many different individuals for the benefit of the patients.

Job Outlook For Telemetry Nursing

The demand for cardiovascular care has never been higher than it is right now. An increased prevalence of chronic diet and exercise related conditions has resulted in many more patients who require the types of services that a nurse provides. The Bureau of Labor Statistics has projected that job opportunities for nurses will increase by 19% over the next 10 years which is faster than average for other occupations. Individuals who are interested in acquiring the credentials needed to enter telemetry nursing can expect many years of job growth.