Thoughts on RNs being allowed to challenge Medic exam?

FiremanMike

Just a dude
1,160
726
113
I had a slightly different experience than AK. I felt I was at the top of my game as a paramedic, prior bachelors, and 15 years as an instructor, but I struggled with nursing school. The information wasn’t necessarily difficult, but it was extremely broad and you had to know how they all connected. Medic school was essentially “see, fix, drive” whereas nursing school is “predict, prevent, plan, see, fix, followup, fix some more, followup some more, educate”.
 

Akulahawk

EMT-P/ED RN
Community Leader
4,968
1,359
113
I had a slightly different experience than AK. I felt I was at the top of my game as a paramedic, prior bachelors, and 15 years as an instructor, but I struggled with nursing school. The information wasn’t necessarily difficult, but it was extremely broad and you had to know how they all connected. Medic school was essentially “see, fix, drive” whereas nursing school is “predict, prevent, plan, see, fix, followup, fix some more, followup some more, educate”.
The "medicine" part is pretty much the same... no matter what level of medicine you're at. What changes is your understanding of it... I had a prior bachelors in Sports Med, got into Paramedic. After SM, medic was EASY. Nursing School was a slightly different beast. :eek: As described, it was quite broad because they were training you to be a generalist. Not a huge depth in any subject, but definitely broad-based. Most of my prior education was medical model. Something's broke, you determine what broke, you fix what's broke and the body will heal. Nursing is almost opposite that. You almost don't need to know exactly what broke but you learn how to support the body's systems so the body will basically heal itself. The other issue is that you do need to know how things fit together and how truly the body is interconnected. That's where nursing gets to be different. That's also where I had my struggles. Medics are specialists. I had a very deep knowledge of the medicine part of stuff... but learning the CNA stuff really is the basics of nursing and is often given way less respect than is deserved. Nursing school became relatively easy once I began making the connections... It's not seeing the forest, it's more like seeing how the trees interact with the squirrels, birds, dirt...

Oh, and by the way, I passed the NCLEX at 75 questions.
 
Last edited:

CCCSD

Forum Deputy Chief
1,813
1,122
113
The "medicine" part is pretty much the same... no matter what level of medicine you're at. What changes is your understanding of it... I had a prior bachelors in Sports Med, got into Paramedic. After SM, medic was EASY. Nursing School was a slightly different beast. :eek: As described, it was quite broad because they were training you to be a generalist. Not a huge depth in any subject, but definitely broad-based. Most of my prior education was medical model. Something's broke, you determine what broke, you fix what's broke and the body will heal. Nursing is almost opposite that. You almost don't need to know exactly what broke but you learn how to support the body's systems so the body will basically heal itself. The other issue is that you do need to know how things fit together and how truly the body is interconnected. That's where nursing gets to be different. That's also where I had my struggles. Medics are specialists. I had a very deep knowledge of the medicine part of stuff... but learning the CNA stuff really is the basics of nursing and is often given way less respect than is deserved. Nursing school became relatively easy once I began making the connections... It's not seeing the forest, it's more like seeing how the trees interact with the squirrels, birds, dirt...

Oh, and by the way, I passed the NCLEX at 75.
Congrats! 75 is a pretty old age to go through Nursing School!
 

Akulahawk

EMT-P/ED RN
Community Leader
4,968
1,359
113
Congrats! 75 is a pretty old age to go through Nursing School!
After spending 3 shifts at the Charge Nurse desk... that's often about how I feel...
 

E tank

Caution: Paralyzing Agent
1,593
1,446
113
Because the nclex merely scratches the surface of nursing. In order to sit for the nclex a nursing program must attest that the student has passed each section of the national curriculum, which is where the bulk of learning and testing occur.
If there was ever a written test that demonstrates exam to reality disproportion, it's the NCLEX.
 

ExpatMedic0

MS, NRP
2,237
269
83
Lots of good replies here from folks who have both license levels and experience. My take on it is this, it should absolutely be 2 ways. A number of paramedics have college degrees and years of experience including ground critical care transport and HEMS. The fact we're not allowed to challenge the nursing exam but the nurse can challenge the Paramedic exam has nothing to do with knowledge or education and everything to do with power, stakeholders, social capital, ect.
 

Carlos Danger

Forum Deputy Chief
Premium Member
4,517
3,243
113
Lots of good replies here from folks who have both license levels and experience. My take on it is this, it should absolutely be 2 ways. A number of paramedics have college degrees and years of experience including ground critical care transport and HEMS. The fact we're not allowed to challenge the nursing exam but the nurse can challenge the Paramedic exam has nothing to do with knowledge or education and everything to do with power, stakeholders, social capital, ect.
I'd grant that there is some truth to that last sentence, but you far too readily dismiss the dramatic differences between the educational models and breadth of knowledge required to pass the respective credentialing exams.

There are tons of good ED or ICU nurses who could pass the NREMTP exam after spending a dozen hours with a test prep book, and in fact many have done just that. You'll have a much harder time finding a paramedic who could pass the NCLEX without many hours of structured study. The difference in breadth is difficult to describe. That isn't because of differences in "power" or "social capital", it's just the realities of the differences between the two educational structures.
 

ExpatMedic0

MS, NRP
2,237
269
83
Absolutely the nursing program has more breadth and holistic training at it's core. However
I would argue there are paramedics with college degrees who have the right prerecs, with some self directed study could pass the NCLEX. So why not let them? The fact it's completely one sided is just plain wrong in my opinion. What's the worst that could happen, a paramedic passing the minimum requirements for entry level practice as a nurse? Then they get mentored by a new employer. Since Covid I have seen plenty of associates degree RNs working in the hospital, including the ED. You can't tell me a 20 year old with 2 years of community college has some extensive vast array of medical knowledge. It should be a 2 way road. Compared to nursing we don't have lobbying power, we don't have mass unionization, we don't have the same influence, funding, or stakeholders.
 

Carlos Danger

Forum Deputy Chief
Premium Member
4,517
3,243
113
Absolutely the nursing program has more breadth and holistic training at it's core. However
I would argue there are paramedics with college degrees who have the right prerecs, with some self directed study could pass the NCLEX. So why not let them? The fact it's completely one sided is just plain wrong in my opinion. What's the worst that could happen, a paramedic passing the minimum requirements for entry level practice as a nurse? Then they get mentored by a new employer. Since Covid I have seen plenty of associates degree RNs working in the hospital, including the ED. You can't tell me a 20 year old with 2 years of community college has some extensive vast array of medical knowledge. It should be a 2 way road. Compared to nursing we don't have lobbying power, we don't have mass unionization, we don't have the same influence, funding, or stakeholders.
What is it with the victimhood / entitlement mentality here? Paramedics aren't being singled out and discriminated against by the nursing profession. No one is being mean to you. It has nothing to do with "lobbying power" or "mass unionization". The fact is, the nursing profession doesn't allow anyone to challenge their credentialing exam unless they've completed an educational program that meets the national standards for nursing education. It isn't even just about the NCLEX; it's about all the clinical experience and other academic hoops that have to be jumped through just to become eligible to even apply for the NCLEX. You might think that's dumb - and maybe it is - but it's the same requirements for everyone. Why do you find that so offensive? Would you expect to be able to skip the police academy and just sit for the exams in the last week of the academy and become a cop that way? Or skip accounting school and sit for the CPA exam? What is it about you that is so special that you think you ought to be able to skip the educational processes that everyone else goes through?

That 20 year old with 2 years of community college might not have "some extensive vast array of medical knowledge", but they successfully completed the educational program required to sit for the NCLEX, and then passed that credentialing exam. Guess what? You can do the same thing if you want.
 

Bullets

Forum Knucklehead
1,600
222
63
The fact is, the nursing profession doesn't allow anyone to challenge their credentialing exam unless they've completed an educational program that meets the national standards for nursing education. It isn't even just about the NCLEX; it's about all the clinical experience and other academic hoops that have to be jumped through just to become eligible to even apply for the NCLEX.
And we should hold the same standard.
 

ExpatMedic0

MS, NRP
2,237
269
83
I don't want to be a nurse. I'm happy for those who do. But you have to see this is one sided right? If you don't, you didn't spend very long working as a paramedic before becoming a nurse.
 

ExpatMedic0

MS, NRP
2,237
269
83
Anyway, per the forum title "Thoughts on RNs being allowed to challenge Medic exam". Those are my thoughts. 😂 Have a nice day everyone
 

Carlos Danger

Forum Deputy Chief
Premium Member
4,517
3,243
113
And we should hold the same standard.
I don't want to be a nurse. I'm happy for those who do. But you have to see this is one sided right? If you don't, you didn't spend very long working as a paramedic before becoming a nurse.
It sounds like your complaint isn't that the nursing educational establishment has consistent and traditional and common (as compared to other professions) standards on who can take their credentialing exam; it's more that state boards of EMS have less consistent and traditional standards on who can challenge state paramedic exams. So where is the problem then, really?

Anyway, per the forum title "Thoughts on RNs being allowed to challenge Medic exam". Those are my thoughts. 😂 Have a nice day everyone
Right.....you came to a discussion on RN's challenging medic exams and all you did is whine about the fact that paramedics can't challenge the NCLEX.
 
Last edited:

FiremanMike

Just a dude
1,160
726
113
I don't want to be a nurse. I'm happy for those who do. But you have to see this is one sided right? If you don't, you didn't spend very long working as a paramedic before becoming a nurse.
It’s only one sided because you’ve never been to nursing school. I was 40, with over 2 decades as a medic, 15 years as an EMS instructor, a prior bachelors with honors, 4.0gpa on my nursing pre-reqs, and instant access to experienced nurses and physicians who could answer sidebar questions whenever they came up. Even with all in my corner, I was still blown away as the volume of information covered in nursing school.

Bottom line - nursing school covers more than paramedic school and builds the foundation that makes the “medic specific” stuff easy to synthesize using a study guide. Paramedic school doesn’t cover anywhere near enough for the reverse to be true.
I hate invoking Dunning Kruger because it’s generally used in a condescending manner, but it applies here and there’s no way around it.
 

akflightmedic

Forum Deputy Chief
3,895
2,574
113
As a general rule...there are not 20 year old RNs, could it possibly happen, yes. Remember that 2 year nursing degree is actually a misnomer as there are two years of pre-reqs prior to entering the 2 year core nursing.
 

akflightmedic

Forum Deputy Chief
3,895
2,574
113
I don't want to be a nurse. I'm happy for those who do. But you have to see this is one sided right? If you don't, you didn't spend very long working as a paramedic before becoming a nurse.

Really? It seems the ones on here who became nurses, did in fact, spend quite a long time working as paramedic. As intelligent as you are, and insightful you have been over the years, can you not acknowledge what I stated earlier? A seasoned RN (ER, ICU) who has had ACLS for years, TNCC, NIH, and a ton of other education who then completes an EMT course to learn the fundamentals, should then not be allowed to challenge the Paramedic exam? Why? The fundamentals have been covered. All the remaining Paramedic stuff is easily already known or a few more CEUs here and there would certainly afford them the knowledge and skills.

And the majority of RNs who challenge are simply doing it to either fly or CCT. There is not a huge rush on RNs trying to short cut their way into a lesser paying role riding 911 trucks. Are there some out there, maybe. As a whole, not really. So where is the issue truly? I did like what Carlos said about maybe its the state boards of EMS who are the issue.
 

DrParasite

The fire extinguisher is not just for show
6,240
2,119
113
A seasoned RN (ER, ICU) who has had ACLS for years, TNCC, NIH, and a ton of other education who then completes an EMT course to learn the fundamentals, should then not be allowed to challenge the Paramedic exam? Why? The fundamentals have been covered. All the remaining Paramedic stuff is easily already known or a few more CEUs here and there would certainly afford them the knowledge and skills.
I can explain why; as @Carlos Danger so eloquently said, modified slightly for paramedicine:
The fact is, the <paramedic> profession doesn't allow anyone to challenge their credentialing exam unless they've completed an educational program that meets the national standards for <paramedic> education. It isn't even just about the <NRP>; it's about all the clinical experience and other academic hoops that have to be jumped through just to become eligible to even apply for the <NRP>. You might think that's dumb - and maybe it is - but it's the same requirements for everyone. Why do you find that so offensive? Would you expect to be able to skip the police academy and just sit for the exams in the last week of the academy and become a cop that way? Or skip accounting school and sit for the CPA exam? What is it about you that is so special that you think you ought to be able to skip the educational processes that everyone else goes through?
 
Top