Well I'm on week five of my orientation on a busy med/surg floor. I have two more weeks to go. This was my first week on my regular night shift. While I like night shift so much more then days just for the fact that I can keep up with the charts and pts, I still feel overwhelmed. My biggest problem is that I haven't gotten any feedback from any of my preceptors or nurse educator. We are supposed to be doing weekly evals, but everyone is too busy to sit down with me. I've even offered to stay late to have a sit down, but that's not happening. It's just that the floor is so busy that no one has time for things.
I guess the kicker for me was my last day on day shift. I had worked with this one particular preceptor for 4 weeks. Towards the end I was taking 6 pts, being primary on them and minding on my preceptors two pts as well. The last day I was kind of sinking, but I managed to tread there until the end and was maybe 5 minutes over. When I got to the break room I found that she had just left and didn't say anything to me. Not a hey good luck on nights or anything. I hope it doesn't sound like I'm whining, but I'm going to be on my own in 2 weeks and no one has said hey you need to work on this, or you are doing well with this.
It's not that I haven't asked or went to my nurse manager for input. But things get busy and meetings I set up go by the wayside. I'm just frustrated I guess. I know there are things that I need to work on, like organizational skills and being more comfortable with the docs. I almost had a panic attack last night when I needed to call and get an order for nausea meds. I've just never called a doc at 3am before. But I made it through.
I guess I feel like I've been left to my own devices completly. I just really need someone to tell me how I'm doing. I'm just so tired of the it's going to take you a year to feel comfortable. I understand that completly. I just want to know how I compare to other new grads and what I need to work on. Is that too much to ask?
I feel like my nurse educator is upset with me because I haven't taken the whole team yet. I did happen to run into her this morning and she asked me what I did last night. It was my second night and I was working with a nurse who had never had an orientee. We had 10pts with 2 discharges and 2 admissions. Well I told her that we kind of worked together I didn't have a designated number of pts, but I give all the IV meds, did 7 of the 10 assessments, 1.5 of the admissions, both discharges, all the chart checks, all calls to the docs, taped the entire report, and anything else that came up. The only thing she said was well so you weren't actually team leader. That's all the feedback I got. I said no, but I did do all that I just told you. And her only response was you really need to be the team leader. I just wanted to scream and tell her then to put me with a preceptor who would feel comfortable handing the reins over. Next week I guess the normal preceptor is coming back from vacation.
Oh well. I've just had some rough shifts and am feeling sorry for myself I guess. I'm sorry for the vent I just needed to get it out. Thanks for listening. ~B
Sep 28, '06
Many of us, especially us boomers, are of the "no feedback is good feedbacker" generation. I'm sure if you weren't doing good you'd know it. You've identified areas you need to work on and are aware of that.
The best thing is to arrange a meeting again with the educator and ask specifically "how am I doing, what have you heard, and what do I need to work on so that we TOGETHER can reach the goal of me being a team leader".
Sep 28, '06
Let me get this right: 10 patients on night shift!! Is this the norm for one nurse????
IMHO - that is wwwwaaaayyy too many patients on med-surg floor.
Sep 28, '06
Thanks Tweety. I'm sure your right no feedback is good feedback. I'm usually pretty sure of myself about things, but I just feel out of my element.
traumaRus, 10 is out of the norm for our floor I believe. What they told me in my interview was that the max would be 8, ha ha...I believed her. But it's 8-10 pts to 1 RN and 1 LPN. We have team nursing. I guess the whole house was full though and they had people overflowing all over the hosp.
Sep 28, '06
I remember reading some of your other posts. your story is so similar to mine. For 10 weeks on day shift with 4-5 preceptors (most of the time they were also charge nurses) and left me on my own. Each week they would say take another patient you need to work up to 6 patients and I will be going to night shift 7p-7a and will be getting a max of up to six patients. I liked all the preceptors, but again they rarely had time for me, every once in a while one would ask how I am doing, I felt like i was sinking at times during the day with patients going for tests, doctors orders, new admission, discharge instructions. I went to nights last monday 9/18 and what a difference, I am working with a preceptor for 2 more weeks (this is my last week) I have learned more from them in 3 days then the 10 weeks i was on days. These nurses take the time to work with me. (as we don't necessarliy have the big rush like days) I get to learn about the patient by reading the H & P . I can chart on time, get out on time. It is a little difficult getting use to nights though, Between 2-4 am I am wiped. Try to catch a little sleep at break time. AT least I don't feel that I am sinking anymore, but eventually would like to go to days, (work on a med tele floor.) Good luck
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