Care + Career

      Resources, news and fun for NHA certification candidates and alumni.

      Insider tips from paramedic expert Christopher Touzeau

      The healthcare industry changes everyday, making continuing education vital to your success as an allied health professional. That’s why NHA requires Continuing Education (CE) credits to maintain certification. And when it comes to creating new educational content, we turn to some of the industry’s top experts — active leaders of the allied health community who are helping shape the future of healthcare.

      People like Christopher Touzeau, MS, FNP-C, NRP, the expert responsible for two new CE articles in our “Tricks and Trends of the Trade” series: Tricks and Trends of the Trade-EKG and Tricks and Trends of the Trade-Injections.

      Touzeau Bio Pic 2017.jpg

      In Christopher's EKG CE piece, he provides an overview of EKG today    and a look into the future, including:

      • The basics of EKG acquisition
      • Common errors during tracing acquisition
      • Techniques and tricks to enhance tracing quality
      • Overview of many types of EKG monitoring devices
      • Rhythm interpretation rules
      • The role of the CET during cardiac emergencies
      • Novel and futuristic EKG devices soon to be on the market

      NHA Certificate holders can LOG IN TO ACCESS THE ARTICLE >>

      Christopher also sheds light on injections in his other CE piece, The Tricks and Trends of the Trades-Injections, which includes:

      • Basics of medication administration by injection
      • The "Rights of Administration"
      • Commonly used equipment
      • An introduction to novel injection devices
      • Present-day best practices surrounding medication preparation
      • Techniques and trends for minimizing pain during injection
      • Preferred injection sites
      • Needle insertion angle
      • Needle size and length for various injection methods
      • Techniques to prevent drug maladministration errors


      Christopher's best advice for your career journey? Work hard.

      "My parents struggled to make ends meet when I was growing up," Christopher says. "I watched them both work harder than anyone else to make things work and it paid off."

      "My advice to anyone wanting to excel and advance in their profession is to simply work harder than everyone else around you — harder than your subordinates and supervisors even. Maintain a strong work ethic and ensure everything always gets done the right way and you’ll rise to the top!" 

      There's a reason — beyond his undeniable work ethic — that we sought out Christopher's expertise. He is a Family Nurse Practitioner and paramedic and currently serves as the Director of paramedic training in Montgomery County, Maryland. Mr. Touzeau is the author of several books, including ECG Cases for EMS and Avoiding Common Prehospital Errors. He loves working with students, performance measurement, and all things technology and medicine.

      We asked Christopher a few questions to help you get to know more about his outlook on the industry and some of the tips that led to his career success. Keep reading to get his valuable career insights.


      What personality traits have been the most useful in your career in healthcare and why?

      Three traits immediately come to mind: communication, empathy and flexibility.

      Communication: Communication is so important because we constantly interact with patients, their friends and family, and collaborate with many others who make up the healthcare team. Our ability to communicate clearly and concisely to patients and providers alike is of paramount importance.

      Empathy: Many of our patients are chronically ill and are anxious about treatments and procedures. Our ability to understand how they feel allows us to best prepare them for success.

      Flexibility: Medicine and knowledge of the human body is constantly evolving and we have a duty to keep up with the change. Flexibility is our ability to accept and adopt new procedures and new knowledge, enabling us to take great care of our patients.


      What are some best practices to ensure that you are keeping up with the industry?

      With new treatments, more knowledge and advancements in technology, it’s challenging to keep up. The best advice I have is to never stop learning and read a lot!

      Subscribe to trade journals, ask questions, stay thirsty for knowledge, attend continuing education seminars and surround yourself with leaders in the industry. Remain flexible and embrace change. Commit to learning two new things about your job every day and make time to accomplish your goal.


      What is the value of being certified in your areas of expertise?

      Certification demonstrates your level of dedication to the profession and illustrates your commitment to top-notch performance. It's a way to formally recognize professional accomplishment, demonstrates that you have met practice standards, and lends credibility to the profession and to you as a professional.


      Access the article in your NHA account

      NHA certificate holders have exclusive access to the entire NHA CE library. To access Christopher’s article and earn 2 CE credits, log in to your NHA account now.


      Completing the "Tricks and Trends of the Trade" series can help you stay certified. Continuing education is so important that NHA requires certificate holders to complete 10 continuing education credits every two years to renew your certification.

      Articles within this series are well suited for those practitioners with field experience related to the content, as you will call upon that knowledge plus these tips to deepen your understanding and complete “Tricks and Trends of the Trade” CE units. 

      Before completing NHA CE, you should check the rules or regulations of the licensing or regulatory agency of your state, in case there are different requirements.

      We’re grateful to have experts like Christopher contributing valuable content in our newest CE series: “Tricks and Trends of the Trade.” We believe there’s no better source of learning than the men and women who are actively working — and leading — the industry today.

      Want to get to know the other authors behind the newest CE series? We shared some insights from two other recent contributors: 

      Amy Rausch, Registered Respiratory Therapist, author of Tricks and Trends of the Trade-Pulmonary Function Testing

      Wanda Chaney-Tardy, RN BSN, CRNI, CPT2, author of Tricks and Trends of the Trade-Phlebotomy

      Don't forget, to maintain your NHA certification, you need to complete 10 Continuing Education (CE) credits every two years. We're here to support you as you grow and help you stay current in the constantly evolving world of healthcare. If you have questions about renewing or reinstating your NHA certification, click here.

      Topics: Insider, continuing education