Erin Stuckey | BSN, RN, CPAN
My Certification Story
I am the least senior RN in my hospital’s PACU and have learned so much over the last few years from my coworkers and anesthesiologists. I decided to take the CPAN exam after I was promoted to a leadership role within the department. Suddenly, I was the one responsible for ensuring safe patient-nurse ratios, delegation and the contact person for any questions or issues!.Preparing for and passing the CPAN exam gave me more confidence in my clinical decisions and expanded my knowledge base in patient care in the PACU. I am a better nurse and patient advocate because of it.
My Study Strategies
While preparing to take the CPAN exam, I took advantage of many of the resources ABPANC had to offer. I had already been receiving weekly emails with practice questions of the week and I purchased several practice exams, which were super helpful. I also purchased a webinar offered through ASPAN on Perianesthesia Nursing Certification review, which also qualified for CEUs. I also purchased a Perianesthesia Certification review book that was based in question format that I found helpful! I consulted the ABPANC mobile study app and the 12-week study plan and stuck to it!
As a PACU RN, patient safety will always be my top priority. My knowledge of safe patient practices has increased greatly from studying for and passing the CPAN exam. I have formulated several proposals for performance improvement projects in my unit and look forward to implementing them in the near future. Preparation for certification has made me a better nurse, resource for coworkers and patient advocate. I am so proud to say I am board certified in my specialty area of nursing.
Don’t give up! Take advantage of the resources ABPANC and ASPAN offer to help you prepare for certification. If you don’t take care of certain patient populations regularly, review those! Know your anesthesia drugs and ASPAN standards. Be familiar with post-anesthesia complications and vasoactive medications and their properties. Make studying a priority and know that it’s not meant to be easy, but it will be worth it. You can do it!