Not Ready for being left alone... - page 2

I am a 'newer' nurse and just found out this morning that as of January I will be able to be left alone on the unit (on weekends we normally only have <8 patients on nights). I work on an... Read More

  1. by   cheshirecat
    I know just how you feel. When I qualified (in the dark ages) I was left in charge on my own after 2 weeks (staff sickness and holidays). You will cope and after a while you will enjoy being in charge. You're about to begin a steep learning curve but it is what you have been trained to do. Your supervisor must think you are up to it, or she/he would not roster you to be on your own.

    My advice - relax and don't think too far ahead. Enjoy each shift as it comes - it does get easier.
  2. by   NurseWi_JennJenn
    RN-Cardiac, yes, I mean the only RN on the floor.

    Cheshirecat, thank you for your advice! I know I really need to relax and I just keep telling myself that the in-house supervisor is only 1 phone call away.

    Thanks again everyone for your replies! The support means tons!!
  3. by   CarVsTree
    Hi Jenn,

    I think a lot of posters did not understand that when you say alone, you mean ALONE! Wow! I have been a nurse for a year and I would not take an assignment of 8 patients as the only RN. That is completely unsafe.

    I had 6 patients the other night and 2 of them were so sick (4 units of blood on one, Muscular Dystropy pt w/sepsis the other). Then my bladder ca pt. had spasms and bleeding (not a big deal, but had to ask another nurse on the floor what to do - we're a trauma unit so I'm not used to traditional med/surg pts...

    Anyway, at any given time there were 2 RN's in my section. I had help with hanging blood, med pass, etc.

    I would RUN not walk from that place. Are there any other hospitals in your area?

    Good luck!
  4. by   General E. Speaking, RN
    Quote from suzy253
    They would rather you do ask questions than attempt something you're uncomfortable with.
    this is so true! The scary ones push forward and DON"T ask questions...
  5. by   UM Review RN
    I agree, you should not be completely alone with the patients. If someone crashes, you have no one to go get necessary supplies, make calls, or even help with CPR.

    Most of the time those things won't happen, it's true, but the one time it does happen, if it happens when you're on duty....

    The whole idea simply isn't safe for any nurse, let alone a new one.
  6. by   NurseWi_JennJenn
    That's how I feel too. I don't think it's safe AT ALL. My manager doesn't care... she thinks we just sit around on night shift... yeah right I bust my butt everytime I work.... Ugh... I like the floor I work on and we have a good team of nurses, but the fact that I will be left alone on the floor makes me want to run and never look back!
  7. by   DolphinRN84
    I so know how you feel! I'm still in orientation and won't officially be on my own till February. But at my hospital, orientation consists of 8 weeks with a preceptor, and 3-4 weeks on "Protected Assignment" or having 2-4 patients on my own...but "protected" whatever that means. I'll actually be on protected assignment in the beginning of January so I know what you mean. I'm scared to be on my own and feel so overwhelmed about it...like I don't know enough or anything at all. It just takes time...though I hope things get better. I definitely feel for you though. All the best to you.
  8. by   RazorbackRN
    Quote from NurseWi_JennJenn
    RN-Cardiac, yes, I mean the only RN on the floor.

    Cheshirecat, thank you for your advice! I know I really need to relax and I just keep telling myself that the in-house supervisor is only 1 phone call away.

    Thanks again everyone for your replies! The support means tons!!


    What kind of support staff will this include? LPN's, techs?
  9. by   NurseWi_JennJenn
    If I am on the floor as the only RN, there will be 1 nursing assistant
  10. by   llg
    I assume you knew the typical staffing pattern on nights when you took the job. If you are NEVER going to be willing to work as the only RN on nights, then you should find another job -- one in which you will always have other RN's readily available to support you. However, if the 1 RN plus 1 assistant staffing pattern is appropriate for your setting and you are just nervous about having to do it on your own, that's a different situation.

    Also, how readily available are other resources (house supervisor, etc.)?

    You haven't given us enough information to know which is the case. My earlier response was based on the assumption that the typical staffing pattern was appropriate for the setting. But if that is not the case, then you are working for an institution that isn't staffing its units appropriately. I wouldn't want to work for a place like that.
  11. by   PANurseRN1
    Deleted; question answered.
  12. by   chenoaspirit
    At our hospital, I was told that if I felt I needed more orientation, all I had to do is ask. Maybe that is an option with you. If not, just know that you need to ask questions. Usually, most nurses are more than happy to help you. No matter what, you will still feel this way when you are first on your own. It's scarey, but Im sure you will be surprised at how well you do.
  13. by   NurseCard
    Quote from llg
    I assume you knew the typical staffing pattern on nights when you took the job. If you are NEVER going to be willing to work as the only RN on nights, then you should find another job -- one in which you will always have other RN's readily available to support you. However, if the 1 RN plus 1 assistant staffing pattern is appropriate for your setting and you are just nervous about having to do it on your own, that's a different situation.

    Also, how readily available are other resources (house supervisor, etc.)?

    You haven't given us enough information to know which is the case. My earlier response was based on the assumption that the typical staffing pattern was appropriate for the setting. But if that is not the case, then you are working for an institution that isn't staffing its units appropriately. I wouldn't want to work for a place like that.
    It kinda *sounds* like the staffing is not appropriate; however I too would like a more detailed description of the patients and the environment...

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