Does anyone work on a unit where there are 2 polarly opposite patient populations? I work on a 24 bed OB unit as a primary nursery nurse. We have to capability to have 3 extended transition/special care nursery beds. Everyone works 2 units. Nursery nurses also float to post partum, Labor floats to post partum, and postpartum/gyne nurses have to float to med surg.
The descision was made to take 10 of our beds on one wing and use them for clean ortho surguries, including joint replacements, because the ortho docs wanted their patients to be off the med/surg unit due to the multiple isolations (MRSA/ VRE/h1n1) If OB is full, like it has been this week, the beds revert back to OB. Med/surg is supposed to staff their patients.
In the last month we have lost 6 of our best nurses, and many more have applied elsewhere. Over 50% of our nurses have never worked anywhere but in ob/gyne/nursery, many of them for over 20 years.
Needless to say, we are all scared to death of the "unknown". 2 days of orientation will not be enough to give the ortho patients the care they deserve. We have been told that a "nurse is a nurse is a nurse", but we are truely OB specialists. I might add that the hospital is seeking Magnet status and I do not see how this fits into being a center for nursing excellence.