Correctional nursing opportunities - page 2

Hi, I'm an RN who recently got 2 job offers as a correctional nurse on a state prison and a psych nurse in a psych hospital. Im really leaning towards the correctional nurse job however I wonder what kind of career opportunities... Read More

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    I have been a correctional LPN for 3 years, and a correctional RN for almost a year. I love my job, but other employers often see the correctional nurse as having no experience and incompetent. I have heard comments from EMT's who come into the facility, that are negative. I have been trying to branch out into other fields. I applied to positions in psych and drug and alcohol, only to get comments from recruiters, that we don't like to hire prison nurses. I have had to at interviews explain out detox procedures or how we deal with psychiatric emergencies and suicide attempts. There is s much to do in corrections and people don't realise it.
    backtowork likes this.

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  2. 3
    I was a shift supervisor for the City and County of San Francisco Jail Health division and then Nursing Supervisor for Prison Health Services (now Corizon) in two larger urban jai facilities. The basic responsibility is to insure the smooth running of the 12 hour shift by assigning other nurses both RN's and LVN's to the various station where they are responsible for completing the work of that particular area; such as the Intake area or the Women's section; the Infirmary and the medication nurses and to coordinate the work assignments so that the nursing staff functions as a whole and accomplishes the goals for that shift. My responsibilities also included scheduling staff for a 28 day schedule assigning per-diem nurses where needed and covering sick calls and time off requests making sure that the nursing staff had their lunch breaks and rest periods. I kept in close contact with the nurse managers to keep them informed and up to date about issues that they might need to become involved with as well as staffing issues and concerns about any individual staff members that were not performing at expected standards. I was involved in new employee orientations and monthly staff training. The two most important function of the shift supervisor is to keep a running dialog with the custody staff and the line supervisors. The sergeants and lieutenants responsible for thee custody staff or sworn staff and their responsibility to protect the safety and security of the facility above all else. As nurses we do a lot of educating and teaching the law enforcement professionals about what we do and why at the same time always following the rules of safety and security. We supervise forced blood draws and care for inmates after they have had to be controlled by tazers or hands on techniques. These skills take time to learn and to practice. Bottom as a correctional nursing supervisor I am a "problem solver" dealing with the difficult and unexpected problems that come up all of the time. Deciding where to suggest that inmates be housed when sick or injured to make certain they are safe and that the custody staff have the resources they need to provide the basic things all inmates require. We must be very capable at managing medical emergencies in the facility. We require all RNs to have ACKLS certification and be skilled in physical assessments and certified in reading 12 lead EKG's. I love working in this speciality and think I have the most exciting and rewarding job possible.
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    I understand that if you work at a correctional facility you are expected to work so much over time there is no time for anything else.
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    Hey Tom,

    I've got an interview in a week from now for a per diem position at SF county jail number 5. This would be my first job out of nursing school (UPenn's second degree program). I was hoping I could contact you to briefly chat about what lies ahead (interview and job scope). I'm excited to experience prison nursing and I think I will subtly enjoy the challenge. Hope to hear from you before Tuesday.

    Wes
  5. 0
    What I am learning is that they also use Psych NP's in the prisons. And, you can work for a certain number of years and get your loans paid for in Health care Corps. This is happening in NC where I live and other states. I have an interview tomorrow for correctional nursing LPN. Let us know what you decide.
  6. 1
    I am from So. Cal but living in NC and wanting to move back to the Bay area. Does Cali still use LPN's in corrections? I am hoping to get my RN before I move back. Just curious and appreciate any help!
    MusicNurseCarrlee likes this.


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