I know nothing about Colorado...

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    Except that it is beautiful, I love snowboarding, and it has always been a dream to pack up all my belongings and move there, if only for a couple years.

    So I am toying with this idea a little more seriously now, however I am trying to hypothetically pick my dream job in Denver but I just can't decide. I don't like making decisions off of websites because I know everything is sugar coated. I don't like looking at "reviews," because only extremists post them. Case in point: "This hospital has terrible customer service! We had to pay 2 dollars for parking!" Really?

    A little background on me...I work in a pretty huge hospital in Western NY. Over 700 beds with 5 ICU's. I work in a Cardiovascular Surgical unit and am interested in working in a MICU. I love working in a large teaching hospital that has so many opportunities. 50% of my patients have transferred from other hospitals for our care. However, I have lived in the same city my entire life and am ready for change. I have dreamed about moving to Colorado since middle school, and I'm pretty big on at least attempting the things that I dream about, just in case I love it.

    Any insight on which hospital would be the best fit for me? I have looked into UCH. Pros: It is a teaching hospital, it seems nurse friendly, it looks like it has decent ratings, it looks like it actively creates plans for improving quality of care (yet does the nursing culture reflect this as well?). Cons: There is no MICU position available at this time, it doesn't look like it is a trauma center (even though I'm not looking at going into trauma/ED nursing, I feel that says something about the acuity of patients).

    Denver Health: It is a Level 1 trauma center and there is a MICU position available, but it is not a teaching hospital, it isn't a magnet hospital, and I read some pretty scathing comments about the nurses on google reviews (quality source, right?).

    I haven't even gotten to look at the other hospitals in the area. Can anyone just give me a quick run-down on what each hospital is like, from a nurse's perspective? I like the cheesy stuff like professional growth and participating in committees and working in a culture where everyone is learning. Especially if I am going to work in an ICU. I really want to work in an environment where there is no ONE right way to do things, as long as the job gets done right. Hopefully that makes sense to those reading this!
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  3. 15 Comments so far...

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    Colorado is beautiful in the mountains. Denver isn't the mountains. There aren't big hospitals in the mountains. UCH is a 2 hour drive from most of the skiing on a good day with no traffic. 4 hours with weather and traffic.

    Other states besides Colorado have mountains and skiing (and hospitals much closers to them). Montana, Idaho, Utah, Nevada, California, Washington, and Oregon all get more snow than Colorado. Right now there is NO snow here. It's miserable skiing.
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    If you're looking for a good, well-paying job....MT is not the state Trust me.... It's good for a nice skiing trip tho
    As for Colorado hospitals, I've heard Denver is pretty decent!! You could also try Aspen?!?!?!?! One thing before you do anything, make sure you have a strong nursing union in CO!!.
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    California Bay and Mountains are awesome. Although, i too am considering relocating to Denver - Got an interview at children's next week an am so exciting. Trying to get in touch with other who will be there next week too!
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    Aspen is a small community hospital.

    I don't think there are any nursing union hospitals in CO. CO is not a union friendly state.
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    I too am moving to Denver in Jan 2013. So, I have plenty of time to research I'm currently a telemetry nurse and am looking to maybe do something different like the OR. I also looked into UCH and Denver Health and both look interesting. I'm wondering if anyone knows if they do an OR residency/internship program for nurses with no previous OR experience? Otherwise I'll check back for more comments on hospitals in the area.
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    After taking the NCLEX-RN, how long does it take for your license to post on the Colorado BON?
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    Thank you for your replies! Sorry it took so long for me to get back. So after thinking about it a little longer I think I am caring less about the size of the hospital/patient acuity, but more about the location and it being nurse-friendly. So, even though I know that Denver is at least 2 hours from skiing, I still won't rule out living there. I'm not looking to be a ski bum, but it would be nice to take a few nice trips out there in the winter. So, from a Denver native, what is your opinion about Denver Health? Is it somewhere you would work? I do not come from a union hospital, so I don't really know what I would be missing out on as far as that is concerned. I still have to look into some of the smaller hospitals, I do know people who know people in Boulder so I might take a look at that one as well. I'm not exactly in a hurry to make this decision, I'm just a little bored right now.
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    Denver Health is a good hospital, and pays well. There are a lot of good facilities in Denver proper.
    beckster_01 likes this.
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    Quote from beckster_01
    I have looked into UCH. Pros: It is a teaching hospital, it seems nurse friendly, it looks like it has decent ratings, it looks like it actively creates plans for improving quality of care (yet does the nursing culture reflect this as well?). Cons: There is no MICU position available at this time, it doesn't look like it is a trauma center (even though I'm not looking at going into trauma/ED nursing, I feel that says something about the acuity of patients).
    Another hospital for you to look into would be Aurora Medical Center. They have a good MICU, as well as a strong CV program. Last I knew they were also a Magnet hospital.

    Don't base acuity of patients on the trauma designation here in Denver. With UCH, they are a Level II Trauma Center and they actually do get a lot of high acuity patients due to their location.
    beckster_01 likes this.


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