Critcal care as new grad

  1. Is it possible for a new grad from an ADN program to get hired in a Critical Care Unit, now or in the next couple of years? I'm just asking this because I keep on reading these posts about how new grads are not wanted in these type of units, or actually in any unit whatsoever unfortunately
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    About bryan_del, ADN, RN

    Joined: Apr '13; Posts: 75; Likes: 37
    from US


  3. by   future_anesthetist
    Quote from bryan_del
    Is it possible for a new grad from an ADN program to get hired in a Critical Care Unit, now or in the next couple of years? I'm just asking this because I keep on reading these posts about how new grads are not wanted in these type of units, or actually in any unit whatsoever unfortunately
    Yes it's possible. There are residency programs that are tailored to new grads and a lot have a critical care placement. A lot of the hospitals want BSNs only and I've been turned down quite a bit due or not having a BSN. However, they ARE our there and it also depends on your area. California May be difficult, Oklahoma maybe not so much...? I graduated a little over 6 months ago, have been working in med surg and was just recently offered 3 different ICU internship positions. It all depends on the applicant.
  4. by   tap87
    It is possible! I have a BSN hired in an ICU shortly after graduating. The manager actually told me they prefer to hire new grads! Good luck - it is possible
  5. by   cole9
    I'm a recent grad, I do have a BSN, but others that were hired with me have their ADN. I'm at a smaller, semi-rural hospital. I was hired right into the CCU/ICU.

    Maybe look at smaller hospitals? They seem to have greater turnover and need people more.
  6. by   dandelion9
    It's possible. I am a new grad, ADN-RN, and am starting soon in the MICU at a teaching hospital, level 1 trauma center, with multiple ICUs.

    Tips: Research the new-grad programs in your area and if possible, job shadow, do observations, or do your preceptorship there. Work hard, ask good questions, and make good contacts. Network DURING nursing school with the nurses on your assigned units, and prove yourself to be a worthy candidate through grades and clinical performance.
  7. by   BlondieRN0912
    It is definitely possible. I graduated in May of 2012 from an Accelerated BSN program. Started a new grad internship in a CVICU at a large hospital immediately after graduation and just got accepted to CRNA school! Definitely look for hospitals offering new graduate internships. If you can get a job in a hospital as a tech, even better. I arranged shadowing in the CVICU I work in prior to interviewing for the internship. I made it a point to introduce myself to the Nurse Manager and all of the nurses I met that day. The opinions of the staff nurses can go a loooonnngg way in landing an internship. Good luck!
  8. by   Chad Collins
    I graduated in May 2013 and I went straight into a Cardiac PCU unit with is a step down but still considered critical care at my hospital. And right now I only have my ADN but I am getting my BSN in a bridge program
  9. by   Stratiotes
    Many new grads have been accepted into our ICU, though it is a smallish hospital. However, we do take open hearts and stuff--so it isn't an "easy" ICU.

    I started after a year of med surg right along with some new grads, and I can tell you that I didn't feel that my med-surg experience gave me any advantage over them except perhaps a little edge in my time management skills and familiarity with charting. I'd say that the most important thing is making sure that you get a good orientation or residency and learn who are the best resources on your unit to seek help from.
  10. by   megan9107
    Yes. I just graduated with an ASN. My advice is to find a nurse extern job in a hospital that you would like to be at. I nurse externed during my last semester of nursing school and was hired into an RN position before graduation into the Critical Care Unit pending passing boards. I am now an RN and orienting to the unit. I also had virtually no work experience except for my extern position. I am 21 years old, so yep new grads and even babies like me can be hired into a unit following graduation. Nurse residency programs are the way to go. You just have to start the hunt early. Good luck!
  11. by   Nurse Rebecca
    It's possible, but not recommended. New grads need to spend a year on the floor. ICU and ER nurses give floor nurses a hard time but it IS a very hard job. They need to remember. If they never worked there then they can't relate. Every nurse should spend a year on med/surg or tele, makes no difference. Ask an ICU nurse to manage 4 or 5 patients, AAAAHHHH!!!! I've been a nurse for 10 years and an ICU nurse for 9 years.
  12. by   PatMac10,RN
    I got hired to the CVICU right out of school, actually 2 of us did. We are both ADN grads who are currently doing RN to BSN programs. We have had no issues. Have we had a lot to learn, yes, but that is the case regardless if you've never working in an ICU setting. We starting taking Fresh heart's, or CABG patients, together with an experienced nurse from our 3rd week.

    Now 2014 District Convention - Day 1I, and my co-worker who is also a new grad, are 6 months out from starting and we are taking fresh hearts independently and have been for almost 2 months.

    We received a very detailed and thorough orientation and everyone has been so great on our unit. Do we still have to ask questions sometimes, heck yes! Lol!!! However, we are doing very well and have had no problems at all.

    I think success in the icu setting is very much dependent on the individual, their work mates and environment, and the orientation and continued education they receive.

    I think some icu nurses are flexible enough to be able to do med-surg. We help staff a telemetry when our census is low or when we need extra time. On the telemetry unit we take up to 5 patients. Typically med/surg nurses take a max of 6 patients at our hospital.
  13. by   erikay408
    To all those who say you "have to spend a year or 2 on the floor", you're wrong. Dead wrong. I worked as a PCT and telemetry tech while in nursing school and at the time I was graduating, there were three other techs doing the same. Our nursing manager advised us that she only had one or two open RN positions, so we should all apply to other units at the hospital. I applied to CICU (at a LARGE, VERY WELL-KNOWN, CLINICALLY ADVANCED TEACHING HOSPITAL). There was an emergency event during my share day and I subsequently impressed the supervisors on the floors during the event, even after being told that it was impossible to get into an ICU as a new grad.
    Almost a year out, after an amazing orientation, I am a comprehensive, excelling, critical-thinking nurse. I have been floated to other units (MICU, SICU, Neuro ICU and our step-down, PCU, which is our telemetry floor) where I've done just fine. While our staffing office protects our ICU nurses from being floated to a Med-Surg floor, I've had 4 patients on PCU and my time management was amazing, even compared to their staff nurses. It should be obvious that you have to make adjustments with additional, yet less critical patients. I absolutely love my job and knowing that even being fairly "green", there's really no hospital that wouldn't hire me with my resume r/t the hospital and unit I work on. I know a lot of nurses who's intention was to start out on a floor for a year or two and transition to the unit....5 years ago. Now, ICU's don't want to adopt their bad habits. Start out in an ICU. Ignore the old nursing cliches and unsupportive attitudes; nursing needs to start heading in a new direction.
  14. by   zeus&lincoln
    I was hired into the NICU as a new grad but my opinion on the matter of allowing GNs into ICUs is much different than maybe you'd imagine. First of all, we shouldn't clump all GNs together. Most are not equal in their knowledge base or skill level. There are some GNs, some in my class even, who had the skill, intellect and maturity to continue their education passed their orientation. Those students could have handled the rigors of an ICU. To the majority of nurses I graduated with, I would say getting their feet wet in med-surg would probably be an amazing idea. Time to gain critical thinking and hands on skills as well as time management.

    I have been hearing a lot on these forums about GNs only wanting to work in ICUs. Yes, that may be the goal but their is experience and knowledge to be gained by going the med-surg route as well. It seems like many people feel if they don't get into an ICU right away that somehow makes them less of a nurse. I whole-heartedly disagree with this notion. Ok, I'll jump off my soap box now!

    A good residency program is key to a GNs success in an ICU. Those of us hired into an ICU in my area had an amazing GN training program . They have been responsible for training GNs in critical care areas for many years with much success.

    There is an overwhelming deficit in a GNs skill level that needs to be gained during a thorough orientation process. One of my friends in an ICU worked at another hospital in the area and received 8 weeks of training before being on her own in a CVICU. No thanks, I worked too hard to get this license to lose it on account of a poor orientation. Conversely, in our hospital, GNs in ICUs receive 14-20 weeks of training. Working in an ICU can be done. However, in my opinion it needs to be a good fit between the right nurse, the orientation and the floor. Best of luck.

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