All Hail ICU Nurses

  1. This is a huge shout out to the mega-talented ICU nurses. All of you do what many of us aspire to do with our lives, but some of us will never get to do. You work with the sickest of sick, with the most complex interventions possible. You save lives on a daily basis. You have more knowledge and skills than many of us could ever comprehend. With your intelligence, confidence and nursing skills, you make a huge difference in the lives of all you care for, in a way that no other nurse can. You are the true definition of success in nursing. Thank you for doing what some of us, including myself, will never be able to accomplish.

    All Hail ICU Nurses!
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  2. 34 Comments

  3. by   herring_RN
    Most ICU nurses are assigned one or two patients. That is all.
    I didn't take the critical care entrance course on my vacation because I wanted to care for the sickest people in town. I wanted a reasonable assignment. Usually I got it.

    I think ALL nurses deserve respect and thanks.
    My favorite phrase is "Thank you nurse."
  4. by   MunoRN
    As a Critical Care nurse I would say all hail every nurse who takes 5, 6, 7 etc of patients that aren't that much less sick than my 2. I remember when I first started in ICU, a nurse who was orienting me declared "there's a special place in heaven for med-surg nurses", after many years in the ICU I have to agree.
  5. by   SaltySarcasticSally
    Quote from MunoRN
    As a Critical Care nurse I would say all hail every nurse who takes 5, 6, 7 etc of patients that aren't that much less sick than my 2. I remember when I first started in ICU, a nurse who was orienting me declared "there's a special place in heaven for med-surg nurses", after many years in the ICU I have to agree.
    I am a new RN, former LPN, now doing Tele/MS. Dear Lord I've never worked so hard! And I used to be an LTC nurse. We take 5 patients each and it is full force go the whole 12.5 hrs every. single. shift. I am in awe of those 30 years older than me still on the floor beside me! I just turned 30, in good health, and can't imagine doing this floor more than a few years.
  6. by   Here.I.Stand
    Thank you for the accolades... but I honestly believe that all nurses/specialties have their own unique and very important challenges. Sure I utilize a lot of tech for my pts, and my interventions save lives.

    However I know very little about practicing nursing at the community and systems level, as public health nurses do. PHNs save lives. I am completely clueless about how to help a psych pt who without treatment is a threat to himself or others. Psych nurses save lives. I don't know nuthin' 'bout birthing babies, but you know how most women and babies survive childbirth today? OB RNs save lives.

    Death is the consequence of many issues, whether it be by epidemic, suicide, prolapsed umbilical cord -- all need nursing expertise. Not just the trauma or stroke pts I care for.

    Another thing to note:the ICU can be very un-glamorous. Never in another area of nursing, have I spent this much time cleaning poop!!
  7. by   Rose_Queen
    Quote from purplegal
    This is a huge shout out to the mega-talented ICU nurses. All of you do what many of us aspire to do with our lives, but some of us will never get to do.
    I don't aspire to be an ICU nurse. I'm quite happy with my OR role and now educator role
    You work with the sickest of sick, with the most complex interventions possible. You save lives on a daily basis. You have more knowledge and skills than many of us could ever comprehend.
    This is an insult to all other specialties. We all have various skills that are relevant to our jobs.
    With your intelligence, confidence and nursing skills, you make a huge difference in the lives of all you care for, in a way that no other nurse can.
    Um, what? You don't think that nurses working outside the ICU can have a major impact on the lives of patients? Really?
    You are the true definition of success in nursing.
    Again, an insult to every other nursing specialty.

    I get that based on your other (rather controversial) posts that you're unhappy in your current role. But that doesn't mean you should be putting any one specialty on a pedestal.
  8. by   pixierose
    A lot of thoughts just went through my head, none of which were pleasant (as I pause getting dressed for work, knowing we are short and I'll have 6 patients again ...)

    Then I saw who the OP was.

    This again?
  9. by   AceOfHearts<3
    I think every type of nursing requires it's own special kind of nurse.

    Every nurse has their kryptonite. I honestly couldn't take how things were on my tele unit any longer. Now instead of 5 really sick patients I have only have 2. I give great kudos to all the nurses who can stick out tele and med-surg and to the LTC, LTACH, and rehab nurses.

    I'm terrified of screwing up a fresh post-op ortho patient.

    Neuro and dementia nurses have incredible patience and are amazing in my opinion.

    Hats off to the peds nurses- I love kids but couldn't handle working with sick ones.

    Many thanks to the L&D, couplet care, and NICU nurses- once again I wouldn't be able to handle the poor outcomes in this population.

    Hospice nurses- keep on rocking and helping people with dignified and peaceful deaths. I see way too many prolonged ones that just lead to the patient suffering more than they need to in the ICU.

    Home care nurses- you are incredible for being willing to walk into unknown situations to provide care for your patients.

    Occupational and public health nurses- thanks for keeping the workforce and general population in working order

    School nurses- you are incredible for all you do from dealing with the sniffles, medications of many kids, true emergencies, watching for signs of abuse, etc- you are so important being out on the front lines in schools!

    I could go on and on...

    I know I didn't even come close to hitting all the different types of nursing- sorry if I missed your specialty.

    Keep on rocking all of my fabulous colleagues!
  10. by   cardiacfreak
    Quote from purplegal
    This is a huge shout out to the mega-talented ICU nurses. All of you do what many of us aspire to do with our lives, but some of us will never get to do. You work with the sickest of sick, with the most complex interventions possible. You save lives on a daily basis. You have more knowledge and skills than many of us could ever comprehend. With your intelligence, confidence and nursing skills, you make a huge difference in the lives of all you care for, in a way that no other nurse can. You are the true definition of success in nursing. Thank you for doing what some of us, including myself, will never be able to accomplish.

    All Hail ICU Nurses!
    Sorry, I don't aspire to be an ICU nurse. I worked step down ICU for 18 years. I could have transferred at anytime. As a matter of fact, many ICU nurses tried to recruit me, including the manager. I was happy where I was and I was a great nurse on step-down. When I decided to leave after 18 years everyone assumed I would go to ICU. Nope, I went to hospice. I make an impact on the remaining life the patient has, I manage symptoms that are out of control such as pain, anxiety, terminal restlessness, etc...all while the family is looking over my shoulder. I educate now more than I ever did in acute care. I don't have the luxury of a doctor coming to the bedside, it is only me. I don't have the luxury of a pharmacy at my disposal, I must leave and go pick up the medication, and then return and wait to see if the symptoms are managed. Sometimes I travel an hour and half to get to the person, I am the hospice families 911.

    So I disagree with you. ICU nurses are not the only nurses who work with the sickest of the sick, who have knowledge, who make a difference in patients lives that no other nurse can. AND, when I ease someone's discomfort so that they can rest and have a peaceful and painless, and dignified death, that is SUCCESS.
  11. by   ThePrincessBride
    Don't get too riled up, guys. This is OP's M.O., her way of seeking attention because she is currently miserable in her own career and has some skewed, glorified version of what ICU nursing entails.

    Sincerely,

    A proud ICU AND med/surg nurse.
  12. by   Here.I.Stand
    Quote from cardiacfreak
    I make an impact on the remaining life the patient has, I manage symptoms that are out of control such as pain, anxiety, terminal restlessness, etc.
    So true! I lost two grandparents this year.

    One had rapidly declined while in the hospital, and given his age decided to move to comfort care, and he died that afternoon. I hadn't known he was in the hospital even -- my parents called me after he passed away. He was not appropriately medicated. My parents told me he had really suffered, was struggling with his secretions and struggling for air. That was pretty devastating for me to hear, and I really wished he had trained hospice nurses because that should NOT have happened.

    My grandma did have an amazing hospice team. She was released home with a hospice consult, and she had frequent visits from the RN, coverage for HHAs, and even got visits from the chaplain. She and my grandpa (not the aforementioned one) had been married for 67 years and raised five children in that house. She passed peacefully in that house.

    All hail hospice nurses!
  13. by   purplegal
    This wasn't intended to say other nurses aren't important, although it read that way. I'm probably a bit obsessed with ICU nursing since I've been told since nursing school that it's not the right place for me. Instructors could tell that I wasn't made to be an ICU nurse. I just have a lot of admiration and respect for these nurses since they are able to do something I am not, and probably tend to get carried away with it. I believe people should be commended for a job well done, especially when it is something I personally am not capable of or suited for.
  14. by   purplegal
    ICU Nursing is not my gift or place in nursing so that is why I admire them so. The knowledge and skills they have just baffle me, since I do not possess them myself.

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