[QUOTE]It will be important for you to have a strong, SUPPORTIVE preceptor who understands that you are a new nurse, period, and not just new to ICU.
In the ICU, you will develop exceptional assessment skills, you will learn to anticipate and deal with worst-case scenarios regularly (which helps a lot of that new-grad fear) and there will ALWAYS be experienced RN's around for a second opinion and for help. [quote]
My point is that there is not ALWAYS that preceptor or any other support for the new grad in ICU anymore....especially at night. Critical care has been hit hardest by the shortage already..... One hospital here had an ICU that was staffed solely by new grads with no support, direction, preceptor on the shift, etc. & it took our state association (read "union") fighting to get the hospital to hire at least a night shift nurse educator to be available to them**. Where the support is there to guide, teach and train the new grad over time, it may be different. Where it isnt, it is unfair to the new grad & dangerous to all. And because of cost-cutting, down-sizing, restructuring, and the shortage, that is more the norm these days than not. Anyway, its a good question for a new grad to ask at an interview: "what kind of support will I have during & AFTER my initial orientation"
** Central Suffolk Hospital hired a nurse educator, who will be on duty from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m., to provide support for the RNs in the ICU, which is staffed entirely by new graduates. Many of these new nurses didnt stay, because they were overwhelmed by their responsibilities.**