Psych nursing vs the OR - page 2

by cherubhipster 2,722 Views | 17 Comments

Hello nurses! I need some opinions because I'm feeling pretty stuck right now, so if you would be so kind please share your thoughts! I appreciate your time. :) I am now one year out of nursing school, working in a LTC... Read More


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    I think Psych Nursing is closer to the classroom environment than OR.

    But since I want to become an OR nurse, I say OR all the way. However, I do hear alot about the fact that OR nurses can get "stuck" in the OR because their skills are so very specialized. But if you are NP minded how about CRNA or First Assist specialties in the OR?

    I hear that Psych Nurses loose their skills for procedures as well, since you don't do them as often.

    Hummm.. tough choice! Good luck
  2. 0
    Quote from SkipBeat
    I don't know much about psych nursing but I've just started training in the OR and I can say it's a lot to learn and really does take a year or so to be comfortable at it. If you are looking for advancement in the OR you can choose to become certified in a specialty, become a first assistant, or even NP that assists the surgeon in surgery. Of course you can always go the management route too. I can say from my experience coming from med-surg, I absolutely love the OR. The things you get to see are amazing. I'd say the only drawback you will find will be dealing with difficult personalities, and that can be anyone from the team including fellow nurses. You definitely can't be a pushover. Of course you can say that about any nursing job you get too. Hope this helps.

    What would be the difference between a first assist and an np that assists in surgery?

    I used to be drawn to the idea of being an RNFA, but I heard they get screwed a lot as far as actually getting paid..which would be unfortunate, to do all that work to get your cert and have to wrestle with insurance companies and surgeons to make any money..
  3. 1
    "Sometimes I think it's like this.. I don't really want to be a psych nurse... But I want to be a psych NP"

    I think you answered your own question...

    I am an OR RN for many years, the last 10 traveling.. OR is hard, stressful and for me at 65 I don't want to do 22 hrs on my feet anymore... call can be a killer.. CV is the most difficult as it get's really boring and call if LOT"S...

    I too did my best on boards in Psych (1975) and today I am taking a case management position and leaving the OR arena.. let the youngin's do it..

    Seriously the OR is hard stressful work... not paid enough and who would want to go into management in the OR...get real.
    Fiona59 likes this.
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    If you are looking to lessen your work load, DO NOT go into Psych nursing. Contrary to what some may believe, psych nursing can be exhausting, fast paced and you may have 20 patients in your face, all wanting their meds now. It is a skill to de-escalate a paitent, maybe 1, 2 ,3 ,all at the same time. It is physically and mentally exhausting. Having said that, it is one of the most rewarding areas of nursing. I love psych nursing! It is not for everyone, it is a challenge! Our patients are all up walking around, and need to be on your toes at all times. We don't have a code team, Psych nurses do it all. Wouldnt change a thing!
    Jules A likes this.
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    I love hearing about the two different fields! It gets me excited to do either. Both.

    I'm not expecting anything easy in either field. Nor wouldni want it easy- I'm not a fan of being bored.

    I could see how the OR could be more physically demanding.. And I remember how mentally exhausted I felt after my psych rotation days... Hut the question is what will be more rewarding for me, and I suppose also, what will best benefit my lifestyle and goals.. Hmm. The million dollar question.
  6. 0
    I was thinking.... I have frequently heard that you can get pegged into a label as a psych RN. but i havent heard the same of being an OR RN until this thread. thoughts?
  7. 1
    I just wanted to let everyone know what the outcome was, in case you were wondering! I've ended up accepting the psychiatric nursing job. My decision was somewhat helped along by external factors (ie this job did not require relocation), but I think that really I'm more suited to be a psych nurse than an OR nurse. The OR nursing was more for an exploration of what my interests -may- be, whereas I know psych nursing is already an interest. Anyway I am happy with my decision thus far, though I haven't started the job yet. I start mid September. I'm excited to say I'll see some of you around the psych forum soon!
    trmayRN likes this.
  8. 0
    I was also offered a Psych job! I start mid Sept. I was just like you. I had to decide between 2 jobs and you just have to go with your gut! When I met with the supervisors for both places...I just knew what would work best for me. Good luck to you!!! Please keep us posted


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