Stressed out Float new grad nurse!!

  1. 0 Well, first off I have to say I'm very lucky to have a job. I'm new grad in California and I just got hired about 5 months ago as a float. I started working at the "easy department's" first postpartum, peds and ICN. Over all I was organized and happy, sometimse I would get a little behind in my work but not much. It was a more easier learning environment. Now I'm on a med-surg tele unit at a county hospital, and Im struggling to keep up, every day I'm behind 1-2 hours in charting. Most of the nurses don't really help me or are just as busy as me so they just don't have time; Since I'm a float I don't really fit in with the normal staff because I'm not one them. It is so frustrating I honestly feel like just giving up! I work the hardest shifts to 15-1130pm and most the other nurses work 12 hours, and I feel like I have the harder patients. I feel like I'm unorganized I will start off good and next thing I know I got 2 Dc and one admission and to pt.s going bad on me, and Residents writing like 20 new orders. I never take a lunch, sometimes they will ask me to work doubles and I will just to get caught up, and then I'm still not even coaught up. The other nurses say I will find my rhythm, but it doesn't feel like it. Last night I was so behind I did not even take my last four vitals and get to changing one my inc pt.s I had a pt. fall, blood transfusion, & so much more, I almost cried on the floor. Ugh!! I really feel like I'm loosing my mind! I need help finding my rountine and staying organised and calm!
  2. Visit  Nursingluv101 profile page

    About Nursingluv101

    Nursingluv101 has '1' year(s) of experience and specializes in 'Emergency Department, Float Pool'. From 'California'; 37 Years Old; Joined Oct '08; Posts: 80; Likes: 24.

    17 Comments so far...

  3. Visit  brownbook profile page
    2
    Unfortunately your whole post sounds exactly like what a new grad on a busy med/surg floor should be experiencing.

    Try to find a sympathetic, empathetic, co-worker, charge nurse, manager, someone from human resources, etc. and show them this post. Ask for advice, input, feedback, on how to get better organized.

    But there is no magic easy cure. You sound like you are doing a great job. It really is tough out there.
    D.R.A. and GrnTea like this.
  4. Visit  Ashnurse profile page
    0
    I am having the same problem. I am a new grad nurse in Canada and I am working float on a med/telemetry unit and LTC. The med/telemetry unit is crazy! I am doing so well on the other two units and then when I get to the medicine unit I am completely lost, far behind, and have no confidence in myself. I have needed some help with a few skills I have never done before and some of the other nurses are not too happy to have a new grad there. It makes it for a difficult learning environment and I am terrified of making a mistake. I usually am given the hardest patients at well. According to the staff they are giving me these patients so I can practice and learn better, but it has become too overwhelming. One night I had 5 clients with chest pain. I was completely swamped between giving meds and doing assessments and calling for new orders and to update the doctor; I got no charting done until the end of my shift and some of my co-workers were laughing watching me struggle. I had to talk to the manager about my assignments and I was basically told to suck it up and welcome to medical nursing. I am interviewing for a new job next week on a paediatric unit and I am praying I get it, so I can leave medicine behind. I am so disappointed, because I thought medicine would be a great place for a beginner to learn, but the environment is just not the right fit for me. Its too bad, because I love floating to the other unit.
  5. Visit  FutureRN_NP profile page
    0
    Quote from Nursingluv101
    Well, first off I have to say I'm very lucky to have a job. I'm new grad in California and I just got hired about 5 months ago as a float. I started working at the "easy department's" first postpartum, peds and ICN. Over all I was organized and happy, sometimse I would get a little behind in my work but not much. It was a more easier learning environment. Now I'm on a med-surg tele unit at a county hospital, and Im struggling to keep up, every day I'm behind 1-2 hours in charting. Most of the nurses don't really help me or are just as busy as me so they just don't have time; Since I'm a float I don't really fit in with the normal staff because I'm not one them. It is so frustrating I honestly feel like just giving up! I work the hardest shifts to 15-1130pm and most the other nurses work 12 hours, and I feel like I have the harder patients. I feel like I'm unorganized I will start off good and next thing I know I got 2 Dc and one admission and to pt.s going bad on me, and Residents writing like 20 new orders. I never take a lunch, sometimes they will ask me to work doubles and I will just to get caught up, and then I'm still not even coaught up. The other nurses say I will find my rhythm, but it doesn't feel like it. Last night I was so behind I did not even take my last four vitals and get to changing one my inc pt.s I had a pt. fall, blood transfusion, & so much more, I almost cried on the floor. Ugh!! I really feel like I'm loosing my mind! I need help finding my rountine and staying organised and calm!
    You describe me. That is how I feel. Unlike you, I only on this job two months include orientation. I asked the Staff Manager for a full time position but didn't get it. I am glad I didn't get the full time because now I am asking him to work less: 2-3 days per week. I cried on the floor one night already due to made several serious mistakes because of what you just described and then they float me to another wing that has nearly 90 percent confuse pts. I felt like I was going crazy myself. Tomorrow I am going to ask if they could keep me at the sub-acute unit instead of going to the LTC unit. I function better with alert and oriented pts. I feel your patient and in the same boat. Hang in there
  6. Visit  Been there,done that profile page
    2
    The facility is the one at fault here.It is not prudent or effective to start a new grad in a float position.
    Why are you taking your own vitals? Is this a total patient care setting?
    You may very well BE getting a harder assignment as a float. Scrutinize this for a week, start DOCUMENTING all assignments by acuity. If this is true, take your documentation to management.
    Keep us posted.
    Last edit by Been there,done that on Jan 5, '12 : Reason: spelling
    Meriwhen and fiveofpeep like this.
  7. Visit  FutureRN_NP profile page
    0
    Well, except I don't take vitals. My CNAs do.
  8. Visit  Nursingluv101 profile page
    1
    Its a county hospital, we draw all our own labs, vitals, and even EKG!!! we also have 0 CNAs, Thank you for all the support. I'm just surprised how hard nursing is on med-surg.
    fiveofpeep likes this.
  9. Visit  fiveofpeep profile page
    0
    Quote from Nursingluv101
    Its a county hospital, we draw all our own labs, vitals, and even EKG!!! we also have 0 CNAs, Thank you for all the support. I'm just surprised how hard nursing is on med-surg.
    That sounds horrible! It's hard enough being a new nurse with ancillary staff.
  10. Visit  AZMOMO2 profile page
    0
    Yuck i wouldn't work under those conditions. County hospital or not there should be some sort of UAP on the floor for ADLs when the RNs are really needed for those chest pains, blood draws and hanging blood. Not to mention the meds and doctor phone calls.

    Why is it accepted that conditions like this are OK and safe? I hope you find another position!
  11. Visit  Good Morning, Gil profile page
    0
    Well, I read your post, but didn't really need to read it. The title says it all. You're so stressed out because you're a float new grad. New grads should not be allowed to float. It's hard enough learning one unit, and one specialty area without doing them all. Floating is reserved for experienced nurses, or should be (and I'm not experienced, but it just makes sense; I know you needed the job, though, and I would have taken it, too, because after all, we need to work to pay the bills). You're floating probably because that hospital is desperate for staff.

    Best of luck to you, sounds like you are doing your best, and trying to be a really good nurse in spite of the crappy working conditions it sounds like you have. No ancillary staff at all? How many patients do you have? Good news: if you can survive this, then wherever you go next, it will seem like a cake walk (if it's a good facility).
  12. Visit  annnais profile page
    0
    I just wanted to give you a virtual ((hug)) and some support. I really understand what you are going through. I moved from California (born and raised there) to start nursing school New York City. I ended up working at a univeristy hospital in Manhattan on a very busy surgical/step down unit/telemetry. The median age of our patients was like 80-90's. We had a lot of confused patients and we could have as many as 6 patients who were all pretty high acuity. We also had tracheostomy pts if we were in the stepdown unit. I stayed on that floor for two 1/2 years until I realized I was just burning out. I recently transferred to Labor and Delivery and am loving the change. I still have to deal with some doctors that think they are God but it is waaaay better than where I was.

    What helped me on the tele floor was getting to work a little early to read through my cardex and try and prioritize my day. Nursing is unpredictable and somedays I just had to keep calm when everything seemed to be happening at once (afib/transport to pick up a pt/doctor calling for status of pt.). Also, I found allies on my floor. I knew there were some people that were not willing to help but I did find other nurses (who are now good friends of mine who became my source of support. We always helped one another when we felt like we were drowning. I am surprised you don't have ancillary staff to do vitals and EKG's. Hang in there. I say maybe look for something different. Maybe Kaiser is hiring? I will say that time made things get better for me and I also got back into my yoga/eating right/meditation. That helped A LOT!! But hang in there the first year (actually the first two years of nursing for me) were really hard!! I hope you are able to find your rhythym and a sense of calm when you are at work. But I would talk to someone and maybe see if there is a position that is more stable for you to transition into. Floating is stressful!! I remember even senior nurses on my old floor hating to float! It was almost like you know what you are dealing with on this floor so why go out into the big unknown!! LOL!! Anyway, I am sending positive thoughts your way. I hope things look up for you!!
  13. Visit  MomRN0913 profile page
    1
    As a new grad i was a float nurse myself. Usually on the busiest med surg floors and with the worst patient assignments because I was not a part of the floor crew.

    There were advantages and disadvantages. Disadvantages is there really is no continuity of care, and I do think that is paramount to a new grad. You don't come back to have the same patients, to get to know them, to under stand disease processes. You take longer because of this, you don't know where everything is without asking because it is always changing. And most importantly you don't have that resource person a new grad should have on a a unit.

    That being said, in the long run I can see where it made me a stronger nurse. I stopped floating 4 months in because I did not like it and got offered a position in the ICU. I was pretty self -suficient by then, so learning came a little easier to me by then.

    Also, find the unit you like. You like post-partum? (such a relief when i was floated there) Request that as your floor, let your manager you prefer it there. Get in good with the staff and the NM and they will think of you when there is an opening. Use it to your advantage.

    Hang in there and keep a look out for the openings on the floors, you already have an in!
    GrnTea likes this.
  14. Visit  Altra profile page
    0
    I don't know any new nurses who feel very comfortable 5 months in.

    But your situation is made a whole lot harder by the fact that you've been hired into the float pool. That is not a well-thought out hiring decision. New nurses need solid foundations -- floating does not provide that. A float pool needs a nurse who can jump in to any given situation and function independently -- that person is not a new grad.

    3-11 is often described as the most intense shift on floor units -- you're not imagining it. Your unit suffers from a lack of nursing assistants/techs and I'm sure that amps up the intensity as well.

    Only you know if you feel you can stick this out, and whether or not it's doing you any good. Best of luck to you.


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