I'm a LPN and for the past 22 years I have worked in LTC. Five years as a CNA and 17 as a LPN, 14 of which were spent as a MDS Nurse. I got burned out doing MDS and took a job in a LTC as a floor nurse on 3-11 shift but lasted three days. To put it nicely, It was a nightmare experience.
Anyway, on November 7th I started a job as a Hyperbaric/Wound care Nurse in a wound clinic with a $3 an hour pay cut. I was so excited to finally be free from LTC and bad management I probably would have taken even more of a pay cut, *BUT* I find myself missing LTC a good bit. I love working with the elderly and find myself missing the interaction and hands on care. The thing is, and I am ashamed to say it, but I have burned bridges with a lot of LTCs in the area, and the ones I haven't worked in or who would rehire me don't need LPNs right now. I've been applying to Home Health agencies as well knowing a large percentage of the clients are elderly, esp. in my area.
I feel like when I'm sitting by a hyperbaric chamber staring at a patient for over two hours a day and dressing wounds for the other six hours that I am losing skills. My plan is, if I can't find a job in LTC, to get a year of experience with the wound clinic, become wound certified and branch out into wound care, hopefully landing a treatment nurse position in a LTC.
I know I'm rambling but I just needed to type that out. Maybe it's just nursing I'm tired of.
P.S. I absolutely do not miss MDS Nursing and don't know if I ever will.
Feb 8, '13
Hello, I just typed a post similar to yours. I too miss my seniors and the hands on care. It is quite a dilemma. I think the best thing we can do is maximize our time and experience. Getting certified in that specialty is definitely something to consider. I am studying for cert in the specialty of my clinic. If we don't keep learning we will rust. I do think that SNF/LTC would be a nice place to work if only the ratios and staffing would improve. In asian culture the elderly are revered. I don't know why in America they think that 1 nurse can take care of 45 to 60 grandmas/grandpas at a time and give them the attention they deserve. Wound dressing is cool. A preceptor once told me it's an art form, you don't just slap it on. I think you will be very good at it by the time you're done
Feb 9, '13
Thank you newrn. I have learned so much in my new role as a hyperbaric/wound nurse and the job is growing on me, but I still miss geriatrics. A few of our patients are elderly with diabetic foot ulcers and trauma wounds, but it's not like the interaction you get in LTC. I suppose my heart will always be with the elderly.