Nursing School Patient Loads - page 2

There is a discussion going on in the Nurse Educator forum related to clinical expectations. Anyway something that has come out of it is the amount of patients this student is responsible to take on.... Read More

  1. Visit  chrisrn24 profile page
    3
    Just have to add that recently there was a thread where a senior student had something like 5 patients and believed that was not appropriate.

    Instead of being supportive, people were incredibly rude to the OP and told her to suck it up. I was upset and wrote a response back to those people. These are just students, they are not trained in anything. 99% of nursing I learned on the floor after graduation not during clinical. I just thought people were quite b!tchy to the OP.
    onewill, KelRN215, and WeepingAngel like this.
  2. Get the hottest topics every week!

    Subscribe to our free Nursing Insights newsletter.

  3. Visit  Bouncyball profile page
    2
    Quote from Tait

    Your situation sounds similar to the one we are discussing, though I am not sure how the RN factors into the other students day. Maybe, if you have time, you could pop over to this thread and offer some advice on managing that many patients.

    http://allnurses.com/nursing-educato...ml#post7257692
    Yes, I have lots of tips. I'm on my way to class now but will respond when I get home.
    onewill and Tait like this.
  4. Visit  VANurse2010 profile page
    1
    Quote from chrisrn24
    Just have to add that recently there was a thread where a senior student had something like 5 patients and believed that was not appropriate.

    Instead of being supportive, people were incredibly rude to the OP and told her to suck it up. I was upset and wrote a response back to those people. These are just students, they are not trained in anything. 99% of nursing I learned on the floor after graduation not during clinical. I just thought people were quite b!tchy to the OP.
    I agree. I think many (if not the majority) of the responses in that thread were ridiculous and inappropriate. I also agree that 99% of nursing I learned on the job.
    hiddencatRN likes this.
  5. Visit  nrsang97 profile page
    1
    In my last semester we had up to 4 patients. Our class was spread out over two adjoining units. We stayed on the same unit for the last 8 weeks of the semester. We had 2 6 hour days of clinical. We had the same pateints 2 days in a row usually with the exceptions of transfers or discharges.
    onewill likes this.
  6. Visit  Tait profile page
    0
    Quote from chrisrn24
    Just have to add that recently there was a thread where a senior student had something like 5 patients and believed that was not appropriate.

    Instead of being supportive, people were incredibly rude to the OP and told her to suck it up. I was upset and wrote a response back to those people. These are just students, they are not trained in anything. 99% of nursing I learned on the floor after graduation not during clinical. I just thought people were quite b!tchy to the OP.
    I didn't see the thread, but I am not surprised. It is interesting how people respond differently to students vs. nurses or just in how the OP phrases the comments. There is another thread over in Nursing Educators about the overuse of power point. After I read the OP I had to sit back and drop the frustration I had with how she phrased some of it, because it sounded like ANY use of ppt was lazy and boring and showed a lack of ability on the part of the instructor. However, after a bit, I was able to come back and make a meaningful post on how I love ppt but that ti is a tool to aid in teaching, not something designed to teach for you.
  7. Visit  Hygiene Queen profile page
    0
    My last rotation, I had 5 pts and was able to pull from the Pyxis and give meds unsupervised. I was encouraged to delegate to the aides. I was not allowed to call the doctor or take off orders, but the floor nurse let me know to do a bladder scan or d/c a foley or whatever. We were expected to be as independent as possible, but be smart enough to know when to ask questions and seek help. I did okay, but I only managed it because I didn't have the full-on responsibility the floor nurse had.
    A few of my peers never got more than three, one of my peers could hardly manage one and another one of my peers managed six.
    Thank goodness we did not have to have someone with us to pull the meds! But sometimes it depended on the hospital. Another hospital we went to required the instructor, but fortunately, we only took 1-2 pts at that time.
    I graduated in 2011, but apparently things have changed since I left school. In my last rotation, I was able to go to the ED and start five IV's. I know a student now who is at that same hospital and they are no longer able to start IV's-- anywhere.
    That's a shame.
  8. Visit  teal&yellowRN profile page
    2
    I graduated last year from a BSN program where we had 1-2 patients per clinical. During my final semester we did a transitions course where we shadowed a RN in our specialty of choosing for 40h a week for 6 weeks. We worked our way up to full patient assignments and did all charting, meds, etc on each patient.
    onewill and PMFB-RN like this.
  9. Visit  squidbilly profile page
    1
    I went through an ADN program in Northern California. In our last semester we were responsible for full care of 4 patients under the supervision of an RN. We had full pyxis access, but were required to double check medications and verify patient identification with an RN. We were responsible for all charting, although our nurses were usually happy to help. We spent the majority of the semester on the same unit, but had brief rotations (1-2 shifts) to ICU, OR, ED, and Cath lab. We rotated out to OB for 6 shifts. We did not have a preceptorship in my program, and I have been told by other nurses and interviewers that my school "screwed me over" in that regard. They have since reintroduced a preceptorship to my school. In our 1st semester we had to complete a detailed 8 page careplan on our 1 patient load. In our final semester we had to complete a brief one page careplan on only 1 of our 4 patients, until our clinical instructor decided we were competent enough to not have to write it out and turn it in (of course we still had to make a verbal report/care plan if asked).
    onewill likes this.
  10. Visit  Tait profile page
    1
    So it definitely looks like there is a lot of variation in the programs.
    hiddencatRN likes this.
  11. Visit  loriangel14 profile page
    0
    In my last placement I started with one and had worked my way up to full care of 5 by the end.
  12. Visit  Calinurse4 profile page
    0
    I was in an ADN program in Northern California and we had 1 patient 1st semester, 2 the 2nd, 3 the 3rd, and 4 the 4th. By the time we completed our preceptorship we were expected to be doing the entire nurse's assignment (usually 4-5 patients) except for having Pyxis access and calling MD's/receiving orders. Usually my preceptor was glad to have SOMETHING to do
  13. Visit  PatMac10,RN profile page
    1
    In my 5 semester ADN program, now, we take do total care for 1 med/surg patient all first semester. That one patient would start of being mild but by the end of the first semester we cared for 1 higher acuity patient, total care. The 2nd semester we had to do total care for 2 stable patients a minimum of 3 times in the semester. During summer semester we had a mix if med Surg and LD/OB, we had one to 2 patients on those rotations, doing total care. On Med-Surg, we started with 3 patients, 2 mild care and 1 slightly higher acuity, all total care.


    My fourth semester we started team nursing and each student rotated to act as "Charge Nurse", that student took responsibility forsaking pt. assignments that day and functioning as a charge nurse, carrying partial responsibility for all patients assigned. Team members during team nursing take anywhere from 2-4 med-surg patients with various blends of acuity, still total care, but if you needed help we have always been encouraged to work as a team. The group, typically made of 5 or 6 students, can only have a max of 14 patients (actually its really according to which instructor we're with bc some like to push us to see how good we are, safely) and a minimum of 10. Nobody gets less than two patients, but we mostly all get at least 3 patients with one or 2 people getting 4 and we rotate that so everyone gets the opportunity to have that kind of pt. load at least twice a semester. Of course our clinical instructor facilitates during the whole team nursing process, double checking to see if they agree with the patient assignments and etc... After hearing report.


    My current semester the first 1/2 of the semester we must do 120 hours of an individual practicum or preceptorship on a desired/assigned unit with an assigned hospital employed preceptor, I chose CVICU.

    By the end of preceptorship all students in my program must be able to manage the care of at least 4 mild-moderate care med-Surg patients safely, independently, or with little guidance. If you completed your practicum in a specialty or critical care unit (L&D, ICU, PACU, ER), we are expected to be SE care for a patient load that is typical for a new grad on that specific unit, for me that was 3-4 CVICU patients, unless I had a fresh CABG, which I would do one one care for.

    Because we must share preceptors and sites with other schools, we can only do 120 hours of individual practicum and have now returned to Team Nursing with our instructors for the remainder of our final semester. We are now taking 2-5 mixed acuity patients, according to which instructor we have. When we have 5 patients or 4 "difficult"we still get our own vitals, but the Morning care can be delegates.

    I'm in SE NC!
    Last edit by PatMac10,RN on Apr 2, '13
    onewill likes this.
  14. Visit  mmc51264 profile page
    1
    My ADN program, I had two pts. all of my last year. We did mother/baby and med/surg. I am now in a six month internship, as a nurse ( new grad program, but I worked for 8 months in a LTC rehab unit). I have started with 2 pts, total care with a preceptor. I will eventually get up to 4-5 at the end of my 6 months. The rationale is that when we learn slowly and methodically, we learn properly. I can't imagine being safe as a student with 5 pts. I am NC as well. eastern.
    onewill likes this.


Nursing Jobs in every specialty and state. Visit today and Create Job Alerts, Manage Your Resume, and Apply for Jobs.

Top