LPN in LTC-night shift

  1. Hello. I will soon be starting a job in LTC working the night shift. This is my first job as a nurse. I am so scared and nervous. I really don't know what to expect. Could someone please tell me what their average night shift consists of? What is the normal routine of things you do? I thought that starting out working night shift would be the easiest way to get experience in a slower atmosphere-am I right for thinking this way? Any help or comments would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
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  2. 6 Comments

  3. by   alk3rainbow
    Quote from shawnalj
    Hello. I will soon be starting a job in LTC working the night shift. This is my first job as a nurse. I am so scared and nervous. I really don't know what to expect. Could someone please tell me what their average night shift consists of? What is the normal routine of things you do? I thought that starting out working night shift would be the easiest way to get experience in a slower atmosphere-am I right for thinking this way? Any help or comments would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
    I worked as a CNA in LTC for night shift so I'm not entirely sure of the LPN duties, but I do know that things weren't slower at night. First off there are less people on duty, and second off older people tend to be up at all hours so the night isn't too much different from the day.
  4. by   shawnalj
    Quote from alk3rainbow
    I worked as a CNA in LTC for night shift so I'm not entirely sure of the LPN duties, but I do know that things weren't slower at night. First off there are less people on duty, and second off older people tend to be up at all hours so the night isn't too much different from the day.
    Thanks for your reply...so it isn't really all that different workin nights huh? I still am wondering what LPN's usual routine is for night shift??
  5. by   jkaee
    Working 11-7, you usually have a midnight med pass (not too heavy) and a morning med pass (where I used to work, you'd start at 5a and it would last until 7a).

    A typical night went like this...

    After report, I'd do my midnight med run, including doing vitals on anyone that needed them, and assessments and alarm checks. I'd check the lab book to see what labs we had, and to see if I needed to straight cath anyone before the aides started their rounds. I'd go thru my treatment book, and try to complete my treatments while the aides did their rounds so that I didn't have to wake the residents up again. Do my charting and chart checks (on my unit that meant reviews on 49 charts), and MDS charting and/or assessments...etc. until 5 am when the real fun started. Then you go nuts with the morning med pass, accu checks, everyone needing the bathroom at the same time, behavior charting for the shift, etc.

    This is a REAL general list....a lot of nights there was more to do, some nights you'd wonder when the night would ever end. It's a different pace, but I'm sure you'll do fine! Good luck!

    Jennifer
  6. by   LauraF, RN
    I do PRN nights. I have worked all shifts on a full time basis. I love nights. The CNA's make or break your night. When I first started I had the worst CNA's ever. Finally after many write-ups they were investigated for abuse and then fired. Now the girls that are on the shift are really good. Here is how our nights usually go. Get report from two different nurses. Our nights one nurse for the whole building. Approx 80 patients. Then I would make up the vital sheets, and assignments. Off I go to do midnight meds, and tube feedings. Then some charting. But I have to be done with charting by 2am because the computer goes down for service or some such until 4am. Then I get in some assessments after the computer dies for the night. I also end up having to finish any paperwork left over from day or evening shift, such as admissions that must be complete within 24 hours. I also fax all the refill requests to the different pharmacies during this computer down time. as well as try and get my break in. Then 4am is the crazy time. The CNA's are getting ready to do their last rounds, and start getting people up. I have a 4am med pass as well as g-tube feeders. Also at this round is when I change nebulizers, and g-tube equipment, and O2 tubing. I usually get done with about 20 minutes to finish typing in my left over notes, and stick them into charts.....that is if noone has passed away on my shift. Night shift is often the chosen shift for the elderly to pass on. That will usually put you about an hour or two behind schedule. Good luck, it is really a great shift for me!
  7. by   Buddha
    Congradulation on becoming a nurse BTW.
    THe previous posts are pretty accurate. I started out on 11-7 many years ago but had a fantastic mentor to help me. If your going to be the only nurse in your building on nights I would rethink becoming broken in on this shift. Not having another nurse to share ideas with or Back you up is pretty unnerving .Hope you get somebody fantastic to orientate you to your building.
    7-3 is more busy but you have many more hands to help when the going gets rough. And having an MD a phone call away can make your day. Believe me I hate calling the docs at night. Thats a whole 'nother thread LOL
    good luck in nursing it's a wonderful and rewarding job.
  8. by   shawnalj
    Thank you so much for all the information. This helps to ease my nerves at least knowing what to expect. I hope that they orient me long enough. They told me that it is individualized depending on how much you need. Wish me luck-Yikes! :uhoh21: Thanks again!

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