Anonymous Certified Nurse

My Certification Story

Perianesthesia nursing is exciting, challenging and can be a quick changing environment. Some may call it stressful, however for me it’s working in "the Hive" of Perioperative Services. I have the most fun doing what nurses love to do... caring and advocating for our patients with passion and professionalism. I found Perianesthesia nursing after being an ICU nurse. As a PACU nurse, I also volunteer to work in preop and presurgical testing centers where one can impact the safety of patients having elective surgery.

I read all I could about my area of practice, attended workshops, conferences and joined ASPAN. I am always seeking and learning and was in a study group for years before I took the certification exam. I was fearful of sitting for certification because I had failed a Urology certification exam by two points!

My Study Strategies

The most important strategy was to believe in myself! I worked those areas every day for years; I knew the information. I attended the national ASPAN conference as part of my review; reviewed information on the ABPANC website, and took the practice exams online. Studying 30 minutes every day (reading alternating with study questions) during the week and a study group on Saturday mornings at another hospital. When I went to take my exam, it felt like a study day... so I didn't feel nervous at all until the end of the test (LOL).

My Benefits

I am enrolled in an RN-BSN program and feel confident about completing the program. I have volunteered to be part of the succession planning in my local chapter and am encouraging staff to take exams (there have been 3 people sit for exam; 1 passed; 3 others are studying). I did receive a monetary bonus and my name on a unit plaque with all certified nurses.

My Advice

Do not give up! You are still a valuable asset to perianesthesia nursing. Encourage yourself; keep reading and learn as much as you can about the other areas in perianesthesia nursing; volunteer to work other areas. Ask questions of CRNAs and anesthesiologists and other nurses in your work area. Everyone is a gift in the workplace and that's how a team is put together. Be intrigued with childlike wonder by what they offer you. You will soon have your own story... Try again soon.