ICU or Med-Surge

  1. Hello peeps:

    I need your input in this situation of mine.
    I passed my board 2 months ago and just got a job in our local university hospital. I will be working on a Med-surge floor. I did my preceptorship in ICU and was hoping to get a job in ICU but that did not happen. I will be starting my new job in 5 days. Today I received an email from the hospital where i did my preceptorship wanting me to come for an Interview. I have always wanted to be an ICU nurse and I do not know if i should take this new position and quit my med-surge position.

    I do not want to burn any bridges. What do you suggest I do?

    The ICU position
    pays 23/Hr
    Private hospital (Does not qualify for the HRSA loan repayment program)

    Med-sug position
    pays 22.7/Hr
    State funded hospital (Qualifies for the HRSA loan repayment program)
    Nurse Union
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  2. 7 Comments

  3. by   RN403
    So you have an interview lined up for the ICU position? I would not quit your Med-Surg job until you have been offered the ICU position.
  4. by   iPink
    I agree with PP, an interview doesn't equal a job offer. If you get offered the position, go with your heart. Pay is virtually the same so that shouldn't sway you one way or the other. Go with what you see yourself doing for a while.
  5. by   HouTx
    It seems as though you have already "done the math" and realized that the HRSA loan repayment factor will undoubtedly more than make up for any salary differences. So, in terms of net income, you're probably better off in the MS job. The union contract may or may not be beneficial to you - IMHO, many of them are very biased toward nurses with high levels of experience.

    Suggest you prioritize in terms of lifestyle goals as well as job goals. Would that 'extra' loan repayment money provide funding for something else that is important to you? Your job should never be the most important thing in your life.
  6. by   mandy13086
    I've been working on a busy MS unit sincd June as a new grad..and I had also wanted to be an ICU nurse since i had enjoyed it during my preceptorship as well. I had gotten an inteview for an internship program, but other people were chosen instead & I was offered a MS position at the same hospital. Let me tell ya..I am very glad that I took the MS and hadn't gotten the ICU one. There is so much to learn as a new grad, so much more than u can fathom that I just think it's better to get that 1 to 2 years under your belt of MS before specializing. Get the basics down before complicating things. That's the advice I recently gave a student nurse that followed me for the day as well. Learning time management and listening to your gut..adjusting to doctors & their quirks..different meds, various surgical procedures (even if you've learned about them in school, seeing it clinically is just different)..there's just a lot of adjustment & learning to jump right into ICU. If u can do it..GREAT! Especially if that's your goal, but IMHO, I would do MS first to get your feet wet.
  7. by   icuRNmaggie
    Go to the ICU interview. Ask about the length of the orientation. Listen to your gut feeling about which position will be a comfortable fit and in which you will feel supported as a novice RN.

    Med Surg in a public hospital may mean a short orientation, high ratios and very little support.
    A new graduate preceptorship for Critical Care is a fantastic opportunity. Resign from the Med Surg position as soon as you have the offer.
    Last edit by icuRNmaggie on Dec 6, '14
  8. by   FuturNurse
    ****UPdate*****

    So I decided to go with the medsurge position against my better judgement. patients to nurse ratio is 6 to 1 with no aides. I hated everything about it. I have never seen anything like this during my many clinical rotations. I am a workaholic but this was beyond ridiculous. My preceptor was also new to the floor (6 months out).
    We were 2 hours late on all medications
    We also had several falls and no one seem to care.

    If i stay any longer on that floor i will quit nursing all together. I am depressed sad and can't stop crying. I am afraid that this is how my career is going to be..

    Luckily I still had the ICU position on the table. I called them and they were happy for me to hire me. I will be giving my 2 weeks notice tomorrow to the medsurg position.
  9. by   mm09026
    I know this post is old but I'm currently having this same problem! I got hired on a med surg floor an hour away from where I live. I thought it would be fine bc I did clinical on a med surg floor and liked it just fine. Mind you at a completely different hospital. Anyway, I've been working nights as orientee with pretty much a new grad nurse too. I'm telling you literally every night we've had a rapid response code. I feel like they treat our floor like a step down unit. I also hate the fact that I'm more focused on getting my charting done than actually being with my patient. I know if I wasn't with my nurse helping her pass meds and chart while she dealt with a code, she'd be drowning in charting. I talked to a friend working on the ICU at the hospital closer to me and she loves it. Plus she gets paid more than I do. She didn't even want to do ICU coming out of nursing school. So I'm asking like do you regret switching from med surg to ICU so soon? Or how are you're feelings now?

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