Critical Care Nursing in the Philippines

There are many nurses that are specializing in critical care nursing to meet the needs of patients who are in life-threatening conditions. Critical care patients are mostly confined in the hospital’s intensive care unit. Nurses that provide these important health care services in the ICUs are called critical care nurses. This specialized nursing field ensures the quality and the continuity of health care to critically ill patients.

Many patients who are critically ill are highly at risk and any changes to their health condition may be fatal. These patients have unstable condition therefore they also have complex and delicate health care needs that is why critical care nurses need to have a cautious approach when providing intensive nursing care.

There is a growing demand for critical nurses to work in nursing units in ICUs, cardiac catheter laboratories, cardiac care facilities, emergency departments, and progressive care units. They also have a vital presence in telemetry units and recovery rooms. Aside from that, critical care nurses are important members of the hospital’s medical evaluation and transport units.

Though considered a recent nursing specialization in the Philippines, the field of critical care nursing was also new to the Western medical world until the late half of the 20th century. The intensive care unit was introduced in order to provide needed healthcare for seriously ill patients. Unlike regular patients in hospital wards, ICU patients require more attention because of their complex needs. No wonder, hospitals need more ICUs and more trained nurses and doctors to meet the growing number of critical care patients.

The critical care nurse’s roles are getting more complicated so they now have to familiarize themselves with the latest medical technologies in order to provide critical care nursing. Aside from that, they need to know about basic and advanced life support

These nurses provide diagnosis and recognize the patient’s immediate needs especially when time is of the essence when life and death can spell difference in the delivery of health care. They need to understand that there limits to it since it is the main responsibility of doctors to provide the diagnosis.

Another important task of the critical care nurse is to deal with the patient’s families and provide counseling to the family especially when facing a very difficult crisis. The nurse will also have to answer the questions and concerns that could be raised by the patient’s family.

However, registered nurses can be assigned as a critical care nurse in the Philippines unlike in the US where nurses need to get a certification for this specialized nursing field. The American Association of Critical Care Nurses sets the standards for critical care nurses. This organization provides the specialized certification course for nurses who want to venture in critical care nursing.

Once qualified, the nurse will have a CCRN (critical care registered nurse) certification and will now be assigned in specialized areas of the hospital such as the ICUs for adult, neonatal, and pediatric patients. Though a very difficult process, many nurses still want to get the credibility of being a CCRN by having the certification.

Critical care nursing saves a lot of lives that is why many hospitals are investing a lot of money for this health care field.

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