new grad bout to start - page 2

Is it just me... first off, im educated! but my problem is I didn't get a lot of hands on at my clinical in school I'm SCARED of the job. I haven't ever taken a full nurse responsibility and... Read More

  1. by   deb123
    I am looking for my first job as an RN. How long is orientation in general?
  2. by   fleur-de-lis
    Quote from jjjoy
    ...Since you are particularly worried about this, don't let an enthusiastic nurse recruiter convince you that "you'll pick things up quickly" and "be just fine" with a skimpy 3 week orientation or the like...
    I was just curious what everyone thinks an acceptable orientation would be - it is definitely something I want to look for when I graduate later this year!
  3. by   TigerGalLE
    Hey everyone. I just found out I passed NCLEX today. I start orientation on monday... which is only an 8 week orientation.. My nurse manager told me if I didn't feel ready at the 8 week mark then I can continue my orientation. It is a med/surg floor, mostly renal/respiratory. Do you think 8 weeks is way too short? I'm worried...
  4. by   clee1
    I'm in the middle of my third week of orientation as a new-grad LPN.

    I came into nursing with a background as a paramedic (a long time ago), and the last year as an MA at an Urgent Care while in NS. So, I have some skill base and a comfort level in working with patients. I was hired on a general med/surg floor of a small city hospital with the understanding that I could have as long (within reason) an orientation as I wanted. I have been told that a few new grads have been on their own in 3 weeks, and some have taken as long as 4 full months. Most take about 8-10 weeks. One new grad, who had been a tech on that unit for 2-3 years as an RN student, went straight to her own load after just three days! She's now one of the charge nurses.... but I digress.

    My preceptor is an uncommonly capable LPN with more than 30 years experience. In our first 30 minutes together she assessed me, then asked me three questions: 1) What is it that you expect to learn from me? 2) How best do you think you'll learn them?; and 3) What skill/area/procedure set, etc. do you think is your weakest?

    I answered her just as directly. "I need to know the unit and facility P&Ps, the specific way we computer chart and document meds, and some procedures that I have never done or it has been so long that I don't feel competent doing them yet (blood transfusions (never done) or a female foley (been a LONG time)). I desperately need a good understanding of the work routines and expected duties. As to how I learn best, I be grateful if you'd push me into the deep end and be standing right there to toss me a life preserver as needed." So... that is how we're doing it.

    The first day, I mostly trailed her, doing tasks as directed and watching everything she did and how she did it. Starting on day 2, I did nearly everything with her watching my every move, directing me anywhere I asked or with anything she could see I was unfamiliar with. This progression has continued. Up until Friday, she had maintained the "organization" aspect of our shift: what needs to be done next, and for which pt, etc. Friday, all that changed. She told me that from then on, our patients would be my patients, and she would only "keep you from messing up". I promised to ask any questions I had before doing anything. I suspect she has been told to push me along as quickly as I can take it. I'll echo the earlier poster - I have learned more these past three weeks than I did in a year of LPN school.

    So far, the pace has been reasonable, with one discharge/admission cycle per shift. It has been explained to me that this is d/t the need to learn both admission and discharge procedures fully. Also, we usually share a tech with two other nurses, so I have extra time to worry about learning the ropes instead of constantly dealing with "code brown's". LPNs here do everything the RNs do except admission assessments and careplans.

    My hospital is a smaller one. My unit has 40 beds; the hospital has probably 150 or so beds all told. I know we are short-handed, and I know they could use me "out on my own". I have the basics worked out already, and I am starting to wonder when the pressure to "go it alone" will begin. I know this already: I will be "on my own" far before I am truly ready, and I also know that I won't take one little step without making sure I'm right after I am by myself. I suspect 4-5 weeks total is all the "orientation" I'll get. It'll take a LOT longer to get comfortable. So, to answer one poster, 8 weeks is not too short for some people in some places, but is perilously short for others in other places. Make any sense?

    I may technically have a pt load of my own soon, but I can assure you that this new nurse will somehow, some way; by reading, questioning, observing, etc. - find out what he needs to know to take care of his patients. And you can bet on that.

    Keep your chin up. You CAN handle this.

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