Typical Shift of a Burn Nurse

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    Could you tell me about your typical day? There is an opening in burns I am interested in. What are your biggest pros/cons of burn nursing? Thank you. When I was in a nursing program we toured a burn center, but didn't get to observe or do anything.
    Last edit by deanaRN on Feb 4, '06

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  2. 8 Comments...

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    I have applied for the job, at at peds burn unit but they have adults pts too as they are the only burn unit in the state. I am trying to schedule a tour of the unit. I have been reading the stickys above to get a little more information too. Ratios sound fair, 1:1-1:4.
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    Most burn units are intensive care units, and you may even have days where your staffing may be two nurses for one patient. A dressing can change can be anywhere from 20 minutes to several hours and for one patient. Depends on how extensive that the burn is.
    tinatinabobina likes this.
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    Thanks, what about the tub rooms? Is there specific staff for the tub rooms, or are you the staff or is it a comination of the two? When we toured the burn unit in school clinicals we were only allowed to view an empty tub room, and only got to see a few of the patients so I didn't get a clear understanding of who does what although we did get to see an adult with 70% and also a toddler with facial burns.

    This is a RN I position, with a long orientation and I believe I stand a good chance of getting the position. I am reading, reading, reading everything I can dig up.
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    Most of the facilities where I have been have had Physical Therapists doing the baths. They are actually trained for that in their programs.
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    Good luck with getting the position, the long orientation sounds just perfect for you.
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    The typical day in the Burn ICU where I work starts out with assessments, checking orders, meds. Then everyone gets together & goes around to all the patients who need dressing changes (it's faster to work together, since you need people for holding, turning, etc.). Patients go to surgery, or to hydrotherapy a lot (done by PT), so there's prep for that... otherwise, it's monitoring for complications & making sure patients are comfortable. The morning is busier than the afternoon. Also, where I work they get direct burn patient admits from the helicopter that don't go through the ER. So that can always happen and make for an eventful day.

    Good luck with getting the job. I'm a new grad and have been in the BICU for 2 weeks. Learning lots!
    tinatinabobina likes this.
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    Thanks so much
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    Our day shifts are similar. We have a 2:1 ratio because it is technically an ICU, even if you have 2 easy med-surg burns. The nurse and the burn tech (we usually have 2 techs staffed during the day) do the woud care, whether it's in the tub room, or at bedside if the patient is in isolation or on a vent. Most wound care is done during day shift, and the BID's are done again on nights. Our main burn techs have been there over 20 years, I don't know how they do it. I did it for 3 months while I studied for the NCLEX and couldnt wait to get my license! I can handle the wound care of my 2 patients, but 3 and 4 and sometimes 5 in a shift... man that hurt. Good luck to you...

    I've been a burn nurse just under a year so far and I have loved every minute of it. It is so wonderful to see your patients get better and send them home rather than just to another floor, and the relationships you get with some of them are priceless.
    tinatinabobina likes this.


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