Newbie in CHARGE and needs help!!

  1. Yes, you read it right.Fresh out of school and about a 8 day orientation and I AM IN CHARGE !! I have been set up tp fail. I have only one major problem. Giving report to the following charge nurse. By the end of my shift(nite) I am so tired and start mixing the patients up . IV's diagnosis.ect... I first take report from the charge, I do some chart checks and gather my own info, or if something happens through the shift, and I take updates from the nurses. I was hoping someone could help me figure out how to keep this info organized, not duplicating a bunch of the same stuff and including important info. Thanks....
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  2. 12 Comments

  3. by   UM Review RN
    You mean before or after you give your two-week notice to this place?

    You have not had adequate orientation or nursing experience to be Charge.

    Your major problem is not so much getting organized, it's keeping your license.

    My advice: get out of there and get into a place that will give you adequate training and education to do your job.

    You'll be a lot happier and last a lot longer as a nurse, too.

    Best wishes.
  4. by   TammyArkansas
    Set up a computer program where you don't have to duplicate pt names and unchanging info. Does your area keep a Kardex? In time, you will know what not to repeat because certain things "are understood" or "are a given". I did the same thing when I began 10 1/2 yrs ago. Are you young? Is your brain free from distractions at home?
    I hope you do well.
    Always remember that old saying: Some experienced nurses eat their young. Keep good intentions. Apologize when necessary. Promise to go find the answer. Don't be lazy. But do take your breaks.
    that's my humble opinion.
  5. by   vamedic4
    I have to agree with Angie...run from this place as fast as you can!! Regardless of where you went to school and how well you did, you lack the experience to function as a charge nurse. Please understand that I don't mean to insult you, quite the contrary. You should just have some really good experience prior to even being asked to charge. I can't imagine how terrified you must be.

    I also must agree with Tammy, as she obviously knows what makes a good charge nurse.
    At my facility, report is obtained from each nurse by the charge nurse and then given from charge to charge verbally with the use of a jot, which is written on a census. It details the dx, what issues they've had during the shift, current meds/fluids,treatments done or due, upcoming procedures, and a general treatment plan and any special "issues" that arise.
    We also maintain Kardexes for all our patients, and update them accordingly as orders are written.


    You deserve better, imho.

    vamedic4
    It's cold in Texas
    Last edit by vamedic4 on Jan 29, '07 : Reason: Forgot something
  6. by   Roy Fokker
    Charge??????!!!!!!! Fresh out of school and 8 DAY orientation???!!!

    I would flee from the spot! No doubts asked! I wouldn't dream of being "charge" untill I had some years experience under my belt!
  7. by   TazziRN
    I agree with the others......RUN, do not walk away from this job!! You are setting yourself up and jeopardizing your license by accepting this assignment.
  8. by   gonzo1
    Facilities love to put newbies in charge. You cost less than an experienced nurse and you will do anything they tell you to, because you don't know any better.
    You do realize that all those nurses you are over are working on your license, and if they screw up, you can be held liable. I hope you are able to recognize who the good nurses are and who you will have to watch very carefully.
    I turned down charge recently because I have only been a nurse for 4 years, 2 on this unit and do not feel experienced enough to handle charge position. Also not sure if I want to be responsible for the job done by all the other nurses on the shift.
    If you decide to stay, and not run like hell, then you will really have to get yourself organized and stay on top.
    Good luck
  9. by   Cardiac-RN
    Quote from gonzo1
    You do realize that all those nurses you are over are working on your license, and if they screw up, you can be held liable.
    Sorry gonzo, but those nurses are working on their OWN licenses.

    However Dak26, being asked to take charge fresh out of school with an 8-day orientation is absolutely ludicrous. You are not even able to feel comfortable just being a nurse yet, much less being a nurse with charge duties. This facility obviously cares little for the well-being of their nurses (which can be extrapolated for the well-being of their patients). Here's hoping that one of your first uses of nursing judgement is to find another position!!

    Good Luck.
  10. by   twinmommy+2
    I'm a fairly new nurse (1 year in med/surg) and just had my first charge two weekends ago. If I didn't have confidence in my team I would have had a very trying day. Two deaths (no-coders, but still), and a chest pain with stat orders coming my way and one very irrate doctor and nurse who werer about to go after each other for really no reason at all.

    Charge nurse position scares me. No way in hell would I have ever taken that at 8 days into orientation. I would have refused and or quit.

    Don't worry about that position. Refuse it and go on about getting your time management skills under a normal orientation first.
  11. by   dak26
    Thanks for all of your honest answers. I already feel what your saying. Especially when I am expected to take a full pt load on top of the charge duties. We do use a kardex, and beleive me those girls do eat their young. I will go in tonight and erase myself as charge if I have any patients. If I can't pass them to other other nurses. Well it's every lady for themselves. If anyone else has something to say,feel free this may probably end up on the directors desk or bulletin board in the nurses station.Wish me luck!!
  12. by   Lisa CCU RN
    Dang. Who is working under you, student nurses?
  13. by   dak26
    I forgot to mention I was not asked to take a charge position it was told I was to.I also signed a contract until the end of April.
  14. by   twinmommy+2
    Contracts can be broken. Your liscence is more important.

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