charge nurse after only 6 mths?????

  1. Questions? How long is one considered a "new grad"? And after 6mths of being a nurse, am i progressing too slowly to ABSOLUTELY NOT feel comfortable or ready to be charge nurse? I work on a VERY BUSY and STRESSFUL med-surg floor and some of our rn's who "charge" are quitting (too stressful). It seems I am "up next" to be charge, only staff rn's can be charge and there are only two of us left, both new grads and I started about 3 months before the other new nurse. I completely don't feel ready. I am still asking tons of questions each day. I am at the point where if they ask me and try to insist that I will quit. I know that some new grads "charge" and I really don't see how. Help! Should i just go ahead and do it? I really feel like it would be a disaster. I BARELY make it through a regular day, I am always the last to leave at the end of the day. I always have to stay an extra 1-2 hours just to finish my charting. Any thoughts or comments would be helpful.
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  2. 12 Comments

  3. by   talaxandra
    Oh good lord! We've had exceptional grads resource (be in charge) after about ten months, and only when there's at least one senior staff member on to guide and support them. This year two of our really good second years have rotated up to resource for a month each.
    You poor thing.
  4. by   jmgrn65
    unfortunately it does happen, but you are not progressing too slowly. At 6 months you probably aren't feeling comfortable in your job let alone charge. I would not do it if you are feeling uncomfortable and not ready. Remember it is your license.
  5. by   Pompom
    I doubt management thinks twice about you being ready or not, if your badge says you are an employee and not agency then you are stuck. There are reasons why seasoned nurses are leaving your unit, perhaps it is time for you to consider moving on if you don't want to be in charge. Talking to your nurse manaer will be of no use, they will just push it on you.
  6. by   May_baby
    :uhoh21: Wow...

    Honey it takes people 6 months to get used to and become just barely proficient in jobs that do not have to deal with the direct welfare or clinical care of others...

    You are officially on my prayer list.

    Wiser souls, bring on the advice.
  7. by   RNSacht
    I have been on my floor for a year now and currently my manager asked me to be "relief" charge nurse. Meaning Im charge nurse when the regular charge is not there. I promptly laughed in her face and walked away. Refuse, Refuse, Refuse, it is YOUR license on the line, Im not even comfortable in my own skin as an RN on her own and Im going to be charge???? I dont think so......:angryfire
  8. by   jrowmom
    wow thanks everyone. i feel much better. i will refuse until i feel comfortable.
  9. by   suzy253
    I'm a new grad too and I feel I'm being 'groomed' to be charge sometime and I know I'm not ready for that. Great advice here. I too will refuse until I know that I'm ready.
  10. by   rn/writer
    This reminds me of the first place I worked after I graduated. Sub acute unit in a large LTF. After six weeks of orientation, I went to nights and was in charge of 35-40 patients and two aides. These were not lightweight patients either. End-stage everything. Serious decubiti. Tube feeders. Infectious diseases (in close proximity to the immuno-compromised patients!).

    I lasted six months. Came out to the parking lot every morning and dissolved into a puddle of relief that I (and my patients) had made it through another night.

    After I left, I found out that they routinely burned through nurses and just replaced them with the up-and-coming crop of new grads.

    Happily, I can report that they are no longer in business.

    If the more seasoned nurses are leaving your unit, you have to wonder why.
  11. by   NotReady4PrimeTime
    If your facility has a mechanism for documenting and reporting concerns about patient care or unsafe staffing decisions, I would recommend using it. That would cover you on several levels, not the least of which is having a paper trail that proves management and administration knows about whatever is happening. Should something horrible but not unforeseen happen, you'd have some protection. Some places call their documentation "assignment under protest" or "staffing and workload report" or "professional responsibility report". Ask around and find out if you have such a tool.
  12. by   Indy
    It doesn't sound to me like the OP has good support systems in place on her unit in order to do well in charge. If it's not at least a little tempting to you, and you are having serious time management issues and/or workload issues with the current job, adding more workload (which is what charge does, one way or another) isn't going to benefit anybody.
  13. by   ICURN7
    Quote from jrowmom
    Questions? How long is one considered a "new grad"? And after 6mths of being a nurse, am i progressing too slowly to ABSOLUTELY NOT feel comfortable or ready to be charge nurse? I work on a VERY BUSY and STRESSFUL med-surg floor and some of our rn's who "charge" are quitting (too stressful). It seems I am "up next" to be charge, only staff rn's can be charge and there are only two of us left, both new grads and I started about 3 months before the other new nurse. I completely don't feel ready. I am still asking tons of questions each day. I am at the point where if they ask me and try to insist that I will quit. I know that some new grads "charge" and I really don't see how. Help! Should i just go ahead and do it? I really feel like it would be a disaster. I BARELY make it through a regular day, I am always the last to leave at the end of the day. I always have to stay an extra 1-2 hours just to finish my charting. Any thoughts or comments would be helpful.

    There is fire on the mountain....run run runnnnnnnnn! Never you accept that kind of offer no matter how good you think you are. You are just 6 months for God's sake and whoever is telling you to charge is putting your hard earned license at stake. Make wise decisions..goodluck
  14. by   mtngrl
    Shoot at a hospital I worked at they wanted me to be charge nurse (as a new grad) after 2 weeks!!! The reason being is they didn't hire many RN'S so whoever was the RN scheduled was the charge nurse! I did not agree with this at all but they would not change it so I had to resign. It was a med/surg floor. That defenitly made me never want to set foot in a hospital again!

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