Cardiovascular intensive care unit nurses are registered nurses who provide critical care to children and/or adults with potentially life-threatening heart conditions. As pivotal members of the emergency medical care team, CVICU nurses use their advanced nursing skills to stabilize gravely ill patients following heart surgeries, transplants, or injuries. CVICU nurses work in a hectic setting and must provide quick responses to the changing needs of their patients.
Because CVICU nurses deliver lifesaving therapies, they make a tremendous difference in patients’ lives and they’re among the most sought-after nursing professionals. Critical care nurses are always in high demand, but this is especially true for RNs with the skills to work in the cardiovascular intensive care unit.
CVICU nurses are among the most highly paid nursing professionals due to the advanced training and experience required. Vivian data from 2019 reflects an average weekly salary of $1,773 for travel CVICU nurses, but travel nurses who claim a permanent tax home typically earn tax-free stipends, including housing allowances and per diems for meals.
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CVICU Nurse FAQs
What are the best agencies for CVICU Nurse jobs?
The agencies on Vivian that currently have the most CVICU Nurse jobs are Stability Healthcare (150), Advantis Medical (110), and OneStaff Medical (84).
How Much Do CVICU Nurse Jobs Pay?
For jobs available on Vivian as of Tuesday, December 7th 2021, the average weekly salary for a Cardiovascular ICU Nurse is $3,437, but can pay up to $6,970 per week.
- min - $980
- avg - $3,437
- max - $6,970
What does a CVICU nurse do?
CVICU nurses care for patients with damaged hearts following heart attacks or surgeries, or healing hearts following transplants. They must continually monitor their patients’ vital signs for signs of deterioration. They also operate heart monitors, run IVs, administer medications, and may be asked to perform CPR and/or operate defibrillators if a patient’s heart stops. CVICU nurses work closely with doctors and heart specialists to prevent heart failure, update medical charts, and educate patients and their families about cardiovascular care. Due to patient complexity, CVICU nurses typically have only one or two patients during a shift.
Where do CVICU nurses work?
CVICU nurses work in cardiovascular intensive care units in a hospital setting. They may work in adult CVICU units and treat critically ill cardiovascular and thoracic patients or work in pediatric units to provide specialized care for children with various heart conditions.
What skills make a good CVICU nurse?
CVICU nurses must be detail oriented and constantly remain vigilant of changes in their patients’ conditions to immediately take life-saving steps when necessary. They must have advanced knowledge of the cardiovascular system and strong clinical skills that they excel at using in a fast-paced environment. They also must be highly proficient at reading heart monitors, electrocardiograms, and vital signs. Because CVICUs are high-tech units, CVICU nurses must be comfortable using specialized devices, such as balloon pumps, ECMO and VADs. Critical thinking, multitasking, and prioritizing care are all top skills, but CVICU nurses must also remain calm and show compassion for their patients and their families.
How to become a CVICU Travel Nurse?
After earning an associate or bachelor’s degree from an accredited nursing program, passing the NCLEX-RN, and completing all state licensing requirements to become an RN, CVICU nurses must complete Basic Life Support, Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support and Pediatric Advanced Life Support certification. They must have one to two years of recent experience in critical care and some travel assignments specifically require CVICU experience in a hospital setting. Some hospitals recommend, or require, advanced certification. The American Association of Critical Care Nurses awards Critical Care Registered Nurse credentials and the American Nurses Credentialing Center awards Cardiac Vascular Nursing board certification.