What cities have the highest ICU nurse demand?

  1. I am developing contingencies in the event that we cannot find ICU jobs at the "tier one" facilities in this job market after graduation (see the thread about your first ICU job). If we looked at moving to get better ICU jobs what areas of the country might offer the greatest potential? The criteria we would be looking for would be things like level one trauma, and or teaching hospital status. My guess is that areas like Houston, Seattle, Phoenix, and Las Vegas might have high demand for these types of positions. Can anyone out there offer perspective on this issue? We would of course probably not actually move without having guarenteed positions and this is a "contingency" scenario.
    •  
  2. 20 Comments

  3. by   CougRN
    If you are looking for great weather and great night life plus a great place to work I would recommend Phoenix. Every major city seems to be in need of ICU nurses but I know first hand that we need them bad in Phoenix. There are great ICU residency programs for new grads here too. If you pm me I can tell you which teaching hospitals would be good to go to. I love it hear personally and plan to come back after CRNA school.

    Quote from Roland
    I am developing contingencies in the event that we cannot find ICU jobs at the "tier one" facilities in this job market after graduation (see the thread about your first ICU job). If we looked at moving to get better ICU jobs what areas of the country might offer the greatest potential? The criteria we would be looking for would be things like level one trauma, and or teaching hospital status. My guess is that areas like Houston, Seattle, Phoenix, and Las Vegas might have high demand for these types of positions. Can anyone out there offer perspective on this issue? We would of course probably not actually move without having guarenteed positions and this is a "contingency" scenario.
  4. by   LesJenRN
    I agree with CougRN. I am up in the Seattle area but worked in Phoenix for several years. There are just so many hospitals in the greater Phoenix area, more than 1 level I trauma center...infact I think there are 3??? The cost of housing is great (compared to Seattle), the weather is beautiful and the atmosphere is pretty casual. Hey...you spend less on wardrob also! Shorts...shorts...shorts.... There are plenty of ICU jobs up here....if you want to work nights.......
    Good luck. I am jealous of CougRN. I miss it down there.....
  5. by   jaimealmostRN
    Les and Coug- Hey guys, as you may have read, I've been asking around about nice, warm states to possibly move/travel to after graduation. This question may sound odd, but are there a lot of spiders in Phoenix? I mean, more so than average? I KNOW HOW WEIRD THIS SOUNDS, but I have a serious phobia and have always heard that desert areas have more than average? How are the suburb areas? I'd love to live in such an awesome town but not if I have to stock up on the Raid spray. Thanks! :uhoh21:
  6. by   versatile_kat
    If you're looking solely for a city with a large number of ICU's (with level 1-2 trauma) then Cleveland should be right up your alley. There are 6 affiliated hospital's with the Cleveland Clinic and I believe 4 affiliated with University hospital system... and they're all within a 3 mile radius of each other! I'm sure there are plenty of ICU option's for you to choose from in the nation, and everyone's right about there being a critical care nurse shortage. I think most hospital's now have some sort of "internship" program for new grad's/new to ICU nurses. So make sure you research that aspect of wherever it is you want to go ... nothing's worse than being new and feeling like you've been thrown to the wolves because your preceptorship was too short.

    Good luck on your search.
  7. by   AnesthesiaBound
    I'm not sure exactly what you're are looking for in a hospital, but I do a good bit of traveling up in New Jersey. Speaking from experience, they are unbelievably understaffed. There is probably no less than 15 or 20 well-respected hospitals within an hour's drive of central jersey and as far as I could tell, the pay is among the highest in the nation, if not the highest.

    Pros: good money
    close to big cities (new york and philly) for night life
    atlantic city
    lots of choices
    plenty of teaching assignments
    lots of overtime
    excellent agency pay

    cons: winter weather
    traffic
    cost of living
    lots of different cultures - communication can be tough

    The long and the short, it's worth a look.

    bj
  8. by   Roland
    What would the cost of "rent" be in New Jersey? We currently own and pay a $400.00 per month mortgage. With taxes and insurance it works out to about $650.00 per month (for a house valued at about 100K here in Indiana). You can add about another $300.00 per month for utilities not including cable (our oil furnace bill alone was about $400.00 per month in Jan and Feb). Of course we are doing that on part time jobs and student grants/loans so as RN's our income will be somewhat higher. In New Jersey could we find something not in the "hood" for under $1200 or so (we could make due with a 500sq ft one bedroom in a pinch and I would be willing to pay up to about $1,700 in rent for exceptional ICU opportunities especially if overtime was a realisitic option). The other factor in choosing a hospital besides it being a good facility with adequate training is whether or not perspective CRNA schools will RECOGNIZE it as such. That is to say since we will mainly be looking at CRNA schools in Penn. and Ohio (my wife insists we take a shot at a school or two in Florida just in case we get lucky), those schools might not be as familiar (and thus not give as much credence) with the ICU's say in Phoenix or Seattle as they might those in Cleveland or New Jersey. Of course we might also be fortunate to find good ICU jobs at say Methodist, Wishard, or the IU Medical Center right here at home, this is after all a contingency plan.
    Last edit by Roland on Mar 21, '04
  9. by   AnesthesiaBound
    As to the rent, I would recommend working as a traveller. You get your rent paid for, plus you get paid a higher salary than your average joe. But, I assume from your quote you haven't starting your nursing career. If this is true, traveling wouldn't be the best option. You frequently are left hanging without a lot of support - you are expected to know your way around an ICU/patient, etc.

    To give you an idea of rent, I've got a friend that just bought a 1200 sq ft house in Somerset (40 min from NYC) and she paid about $300,000. Then, you have to add taxes, etc which could run $6-10,000 a year. It's crazy.

    As far a school's go, I don't think they care if you are from a different state. There might be some pressure from local anesthesia groups to accept locals, but I don't know. I've been working up in Jersey for the last 4 years and was just accepted to MTSA in Nashville, so I don't think it matters too much.

    hope this helps.

    bj
  10. by   Roland
    I wonder if the high home prices translate to universally high rents. By way of comparison, I have a few friends who live on Oahu who have told me that to BUY a house like we have here in the Midwest (modest three bedroom ranch, one bath, 1200SQ FT, built in the 1950's worth about 100K here) would cost AT LEAST $250,000 and that's not anywhere NEAR the beech. On the other hand they say that you can rent a nice two bedroom for around $1,200/month or less in many areas of the island (compared to about $550.00 or so per month here) within a short walk from the surf. Thus, there is a disparity of housing costs (which exists for a plethora of reasons including the relatively high number of rentals built due to Hawai being a tourest destination. Also the high cost of land inflates the cost of single unit dwellings) between renting apartments and owning a home. Perhaps this situation exists to some degree in New Jersey.

    The travel option doesn't seem optimal based on the opinions of many others in this forum who feel that it would detract from the best possible CRNA school preparation (Keep in mind we could definitely stay here and work in major city ICU's, however we MAY not be able to secure employment in one of the three preeminent local ICU's. Thus, moving would strictly be for the purpose of obtaining optimal experience rather than maximizing income, although income is always a consderation albeit in the context of overall cost of living.) In addition, a travel position would exclude the type of "student preceptorship" that we are looking for (in addition to requiring stong ICU skills "in hand" to be practical).

    My point with schools recognizing "regional favorites" has more to do with the sort of intrinsic, bias inherent in ALL human endeavors than nefarious favoritism. Thus, if you asked me to name a GREAT state university, I am more likely to name Purdue or the University of Michigan because I am familiar with them, than say the University of Oregon which lies a great distance to my West. In fact, the University of Oregon may be equal to or even BETTER than Purdue or the school in Ann Arbor (obviously, the specific program in question would probably be determinitive in any such abjudication). In the same way CRNA school admission boards are probably subject to the same sort of intrinsic "bias". They are familiar with certain ICU's, and have established opinions as to their excellence or lack there of (it is not necessary that these notions be accurate only that they often exist). Building upon my state school analogy if I were on such a selection board and presented with two equal applicants, one from the University of Oregon and the other matriculating from Purdue, I very well might be inclined to give the nod to the Purdue applicant (cetaris paribus, understanding that we are talking about ICU's rather than schools in this case).
    Last edit by Roland on Mar 22, '04
  11. by   TraumaNurse
    Roland,
    The actual ICU experience you have is more important than the hospital's reputation where you gain that experience. I doubt many CRNA programs look at which academic center you worked at, they just want to know that you have worked with the sickest patients and dealt with lots of invasive lines, vasoactive drips and various ventilator settings. Also, in most of the schools there is a mix of students from all over the country, so there is less bias as to which hospital you gained your experience at. This may be true in schools that give preference to instate applicants, but the schools in this area do not to my knowledge. The schools I was in contact with seemed proud that they had diverse student population from all over the country.
    I have worked in several university hospitals and have a good resume. The schools I applied to did not care about where I worked, but did want to know what kinds of experiences/patients I was used to taking care of. So, I think if it is financially beneficial for you to stay in Indy, then you should stay there and work at one of the larger hospitals.
    As for NJ, it is much more expensive near NYC. I live in South Jersey just outside Philly and have easy access to many major hospitals and universities including 6 CRNA programs. There are some areas you would not want to be near, but there are places you can find affordable housing in decent neighborhoods. I love living in this area, but it is very different from where you live and cost of living is generally much higher.
  12. by   AnesthesiaBound
    I have to agree with TraumaNurse. During my interview, they were more interested in the types of patients I took care of, not where I was working. If you can secure a job and cross-train in several different ICUs.

    This seems to be very important and can only improve your chances.

    Personally, I have really enjoyed working in Jersey. The location and people are great.
  13. by   ayndim
    Quote from jaimealmostRN
    Les and Coug- Hey guys, as you may have read, I've been asking around about nice, warm states to possibly move/travel to after graduation. This question may sound odd, but are there a lot of spiders in Phoenix? I mean, more so than average? I KNOW HOW WEIRD THIS SOUNDS, but I have a serious phobia and have always heard that desert areas have more than average? How are the suburb areas? I'd love to live in such an awesome town but not if I have to stock up on the Raid spray. Thanks! :uhoh21:
    I live in Phoenix and I don't see alot of spiders where I live. My sister gets scorpions but she is out in the boonies. We don't get the scorpions at my house either. The weather is nice if you like it hot. We hit 97, yes 97, yesterday. And we generally top 115 in the summer. Still it is cheap. We are moving to the west valley area (Surprise) and just bought a house. It is 2287 sq ft, 5 bedroom, 2 1/2 bath with granite countertops in the kitchen for $147,900. It is brand new and construction will begin on it in a couple of weeks. We added a bunch of upgrades (better carpet, cabinets, upgraded appliance, gas line to bbq in backyard and gas appliances in the house, plus some other things) and will end up paying about $170,000. Not bad and the granite is included in the 147,900 price.

    I hear that in the winter when the snowbirds come down you can get big bucks for taking an extra shift. The rumor I heard is $100 extra plus overtime (might have been double). I am a nursing student so I don't know if it is true or not.
  14. by   LesJenRN
    Quote from jaimealmostRN
    Les and Coug- Hey guys, as you may have read, I've been asking around about nice, warm states to possibly move/travel to after graduation. This question may sound odd, but are there a lot of spiders in Phoenix? I mean, more so than average? I KNOW HOW WEIRD THIS SOUNDS, but I have a serious phobia and have always heard that desert areas have more than average? How are the suburb areas? I'd love to live in such an awesome town but not if I have to stock up on the Raid spray. Thanks! :uhoh21:
    Let me tell you about Spiders.....I also have a huge phobia...didnt realize it until I got back here to the PNW and these big fat black spiders seem to crawl out of the floorboards...webs across everything in the woods with spiders sitting in the middle of them.....eeeekkkkkk....I can barely type this...
    Phoenix didnt have a big spider issue..... some areas have a large number of scorpions though. Mostly if you live up against the hillls. I never saw one in 7 years. Hiking through the desert you just have to be careful but it's no huge deal. You dont tend to stick your hand into any dark crevesas (sp?) without looking first. I lived in the suburbs and found them to be realatively bug free......

close