Is it better to do 2 yrs of Med-Surg after graduation or go directly onto a floor

  1. Hi, (I'm from ontario canada btw)

    Ive heard from countless people that its better to take 2 years of medsurg then go into what you want to do. I want to eventually be a psych nurse for children / adolescents (probably in the field of eating disorders) but sooo many people have told me to do 2 yrs of med surg first.

    Does it really make a difference?

    Can you still get hired without 2 years of medsurg?

    Thanks
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  2. 15 Comments

  3. by   VTBabyNurse
    I heard the same thing before I graduated, but after going through med-surg rotation in school I knew I would personally hate it, so I didn't even apply. I was hired directly onto a mother/baby floor and I don't regret my decision at all. If you want experience in that setting then it would be a good background to have in case the psych nursing doesn't work out. It doesn't hurt to apply to both.
  4. by   student456
    yea im on my med surg rotation right now

    its ok and you learn alot but its not what i want to do in nursing and its two whole years when i could be working somewhere i love

    do places hire you without the 2 years of medsurg or do most require it now?

    Im currently in my second year of BSCN
  5. by   VTBabyNurse
    I work in the United States in Virginia so I don't know about Canada. But no one in my nursing class got a job in med-surg. Most went into ER, ICU, Peds, or NICU. Most people do not require med-surg for specialty jobs.

    I would say do what you love first. You may not want to spend 2 years working somewhere you don't just because people think you "should".

    Good luck
  6. by   Sabby_NC
    from what i hear it is not necessary these days to consolidate after you finish but personally i would. it may be a tough two years but you learn heaps and are then ready to settle into the field that you desire.
    on the other hand i have friends daughters who did their nclex and were accepted into the field they chose.
    my step daughter is one who is going straight into icu to learn on the job and be 'preceptored' for as long as she needs it. i think that is awesome for her and she is sooooo happy.
    i speak of someone trained a long time ago, think of the ark lol
    cheers
    sabby
  7. by   hanna-beacon
    I would recomend at least spending some time gaining gerenral experience. Although if you know for sure what you want to do then you may as well apply for it! There will always be a Med/Surg ward if your chosen field doesn't work out!

    I'm finding Med/Surg great for experience and also for finding out what fields there are out there! I'm still not sure what I want to specialise in, but I'm learning so much while I decide! Med/Surg can't be a bad thing!
  8. by   bill4745
    One year is usually enough.
  9. by   I_am_Julia
    it doesn't make a difference to me. i wouldn't dream of doing med/surg unless i was doing a prn shift. med/surg is for some people and for some it's not. it's not a requirement to start there.

    Quote from muhaha
    hi, (i'm from ontario canada btw)

    ive heard from countless people that its better to take 2 years of medsurg then go into what you want to do. i want to eventually be a psych nurse for children / adolescents (probably in the field of eating disorders) but sooo many people have told me to do 2 yrs of med surg first.

    does it really make a difference?

    can you still get hired without 2 years of medsurg?

    thanks :d
  10. by   lpnQT25
    I am doing exactly that... I am a recent LPN grad and want to continue on for my RN... I feel that this experience I am gaining on MED/Surg unit will help me when I do start the RN program. It is tough and stressful and not for ebveryone, but I feel that I am gaining a good base ground.
  11. by   MedSurgeMess
    Talk to the nurse manager of the hospital dept that you want to work in and see what she has to say. This will give you an idea of what you should plan for. Every area is different and every manager has a differet idea of what their hiring/transfer requirements are.
  12. by   gonzo1
    One year of med/surg would be enough. A lot of units are hiring grads straight out of school. I am glad I did a year of med/surg first because I learned alot. You get a better feel for the hospital and you get to know a lot of the doctors. If I had gone straight into ER I wouldn't know as much about the doctors and the hospital as I do because we don't have a lot of contact with the rest of the hospital from the ER.
  13. by   rnpang
    It really depends on the hospital you will be working at. Med/Surg at my hospital deals primarily with drug addicts, the poor, and the homeless. Nursing care usually involves treatment for DM, HTN, dehydration, and other effects of polysubstance abuse. This is a huge urban area hospital.

    The hospital I used to work at was a small rural hospital with a completely different patient population. Most Med/Surg patients were there for angina, obstructed bowel, gallbladder, COPD, CA, and everything else!

    So...select your employer accordingly. It really depends on which skills you are looking to build upon. Some nurses like variety (small rural will give you this), while some nurses like concentrating in one or two areas only.

    Either way, your Med/Surg experience will serve you well. You will discover what you are good at, what you like to do, and most importantly - what you hate doing!

    Good Luck!!
  14. by   sequelae
    i dont think that it is necessary because if that is the field that you want to be in, by all means get in that field. gaining 2 years in medical surgical wont necessarily make you more qualified or even be an effective psychiatric nurse for that matter.

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