It’s About to Get Real with Keep It Real RN EPS 233

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On this episode of RNFM Radio, we (finally!) welcome Craig Erickson, the man behind KeepItRealRN; you can also find him on YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Can you believe he’s finally here? We can barely believe our ears!

Craig Erickson, KeepItReal RNCraig Erickson has been an RN for let’s say, a very long time. He has done a little bit of everything.

Craig knows from personal experience that the profession has a wide variety of options.

You know the old saying about relationships, “There is someone out there for everyone.” In the profession of nursing, “There is some(thing) out there for everyone. It’s all about awareness and choices.”

Craig’s favorite quote is actually his own: “You will never live the dream until that dream becomes a goal.

When he was a kid, Craig was really into radio and wanted to be a disc jockey, so he and his best friend would record shows on a cassette recorder. He built his first AM radio transmitter using a Radio Shack 150-in-1 electronics kit. They figured out how to run a line out of the cassette recorder into the AM transmitter so they could play back their shows and walk around the neighborhood listening on a transistor radio.

In a message to us he wrote the following to us: “By the way, when you mentioned Radio Shack, I LOVED Radio Shack; it’s sad that there are generations of nerds out there who will never experience the “Nerdvana” that was Radio Shack. Listening to the RNFM show episodes 216 and 217 on the ‘Power of Podcasting’ made me think about how cool it would have been if we had as kids the technology that exists now to put on a show.”

Craig was attracted to working in the ICU because of all the tech, and he says it isn’t enough for him to know how to use something—he wants to know how it works.

This amazing tech-oriented nurse has loved all things hardware since he was a kid, and his YouTube channel has been tearing up the airwaves for years. Craig even has a non-nursing YouTube video on how to fold a fitted sheet, and it’s received over 750,000 views. He has said that if he could go back in time and change careers, he would have been an audio/video engineer.

As a nurse, Mr. Erickson is currently employed in a “virtual ICU” where he works virtually with the nurses at a number of ICUs around the country. The site where Craig works receives live feeds of vital signs and other bedside data from up to 78 units around the country, and he and his colleagues work as long-distance consultants, interfacing with the nurses and staff via video, phone, and electronic communications. There are even cameras embedded in the rooms through which Craig can communicate with staff, patients, and families.

Interestingly, Craig’s wife graduated from NP school in late 2016! Congrats to her!

Craig still spends some time as an ICU nurse so that he’s also in the “real world” as opposed to only the virtual world. He finds that the pace of change in nursing and medical technology can throw some of the older nurses for a loop, whereas the younger nurses are quicker to pick up on it and roll with the changes. He also opines that there’s probably not a single user-friendly EMR in the world!

On his YouTube channel, Craig states that he’s still trying to find his voice after posting more than 40 videos. He wants to know who’s interested in his subject matter and tailor it to those receptive to what he has to say; a new YouTube series (with up to 50 episodes) will be called “My Nursing Story“, outlining the in-depth story of his career trajectory.

We encourage you to find Craig on all of his platforms:


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