When in your career did you begin to precept/orient new RN's

  1. I have been an RN for about 9 months. Last week the students came to our unit. They are assigned two patients and must have the same RN for both. This means I have to watch them do every med pass, get the meds out of the pyxis room for them, review their charting and teach new procedures. Is this normal for where you work to start doing this so soon??

    Also we are orienting an experienced LPN to our unit, she also was assigned to me for several hours. While she was able to get her own meds and take on four patients and I had little to do with her, it still took supervision and time.

    I never said anything at the time, but started to wonder later. Just curious how your facility handles this. I will definately check out our policies today and report back to ya.
    •  
  2. 8 Comments

  3. by   fgoff
    I was about a year out when I oriented new staff. As a staff nurse I never had to be responsible for nursing students.....

    Where was the instuctor?
    I have read this time & time again about staff being responsible for students. What gives????
  4. by   TazziRN
    In many facilities (mine included), the students are spread out over different units. Since there is only one instructor, this means that the nursing staff (if they are willing) take on some of the teaching responsibility. I have done so many times, without reservation. I find out which tasks my students have been signed off on and can perform without the instructor, and I will supervise those tasks being done.

    I don't recall the first time I took on a student, but I love working with them most of the time....occasionally I get a knowitall that makes the experience unpleasant, but I am not shy about giving feedback to the instructors.
  5. by   nurseclare
    I hear you. I took my first student a mere 3 months after being released from preceptorship. I had no notice, just showed up for work and was told I had this student for the morning, and continue to have them. Told it is part of RN teaching responsibility. It generally interferes with my planning for the day and my patient care, because some of the students are in 2nd semester, 3rd or 4th. So their experience and with, knowledge of and familiarity with medications differs. Just be careful and put your patient care first. It's your license. Remember it is also OK to tell the student I have a heavy case load today, so just watch what I do for this patient and ask questions later.
    Good luck!
  6. by   Hoozdo
    I had students when I was a new grad and still on orientation! I didn't mind too much......I had a lot in common with them :roll
    Most were very helfpul, the ones that weren't sat in the breakroom working on careplans when they could of been getting patient care experience. I guess it helped that all of my students were in the very end of the nursing program so I was able to utilize most all of their skills.
  7. by   Ruby Vee
    [font="comic sans ms"]i have to laugh! usually it's the thread by the newbie about how mean, nasty and tyrannical their preceptor is and how horrible it is that preceptors don't remember what it was like to be new! honey, you'll probably be flamed for being so "negative" about newbies!

    i precepted after about a year. i may not have been ready for it, but there probably wasn't any dumb mistake my orientees could make that i hadn't already made. so perhaps i was ready for it after all! what you're learning now is that precepting is hard work!

    there's nothing that solidifies knowlege in your head like having to explain it to someone else. look at this as a learning opportunity. anything you don't understand well enough to explain is something you don't understand well enough, and this is an excellent way to find those deficiencies in your knowlege base! it's also a good time to consolidate your time-management skills. watching someone else struggle is a good way to learn what works and what doesn't and a good way to perfect your own practice. it's easier to see what someone else is doing wrong when they're doing it than to see what you're doing wrong when you are.

    ideally every nursing student and orientee would have a knowlegeable, expereinced preceptor who wants to precept. unfortunately, that's not the reality.

    your students and orientees will have some practices that you can learn from. even after 30 years, i still learn from every student i have. hopefully you'll have as much to teach them as you can learn from them.
  8. by   lennel
    the first student assigned to me was on my 4th day as a newly qualified rn.
    i was terrified as i was already questioning my own practice.
    there has been some very good advice given, you dont ever stop learning and as someone has already pointed out it does help consolidate what you already know.
    Last edit by lennel on Feb 8, '07
  9. by   NurseKatie08
    Quote from Fairlythere
    I have been an RN for about 9 months. Last week the students came to our unit. They are assigned two patients and must have the same RN for both. This means I have to watch them do every med pass, get the meds out of the pyxis room for them, review their charting and teach new procedures. Is this normal for where you work to start doing this so soon??

    Also we are orienting an experienced LPN to our unit, she also was assigned to me for several hours. While she was able to get her own meds and take on four patients and I had little to do with her, it still took supervision and time.

    I never said anything at the time, but started to wonder later. Just curious how your facility handles this. I will definately check out our policies today and report back to ya.
    We could only do med passes or procedures in nursing school with the supervision of our instructor--unless we had permission to do otherwise with the primary nurse.
    We always had to check in & report off to the primary nurse, let him/her know what we were doing, etc. If the primary nurse was hanging blood/doing a procedure, they'd let us watch and take the time to explain what they were doing, but they never were responsible for us--that's why the instructor is there.
  10. by   Penguin67
    You should be off orientation before precepting a new employee. And you should be very comfortable in your positoin before orienting, or else what will you be teaching someone?

    FYI-no one but you is covered under your license. Students do not "work on" anyone's license. Not even they instructor's license. They all carry student malpractice insurance. As long as the student is doing what they are assigned and are being properly supervised by and RN (instructor or staff RN), they are pretty much ok.

    Thankfully, we have staff nurses who are wonderful to our students. Legally, according to the Georgia Nurse Practice Act, we can put up to 10 students in a clinical group. With a faculty shortage, most groups are running at full capacity. As I can't possibly be in 10 places at once, the students are instructed to see their nurse for alot of things, particularly for clarification of orders. The hospital where I take students recently rescinded their computer access, so the staff nurses are having to look things up with the students. Not my rule, but just the way it is. If you want to recruit new staff nurses, be nice to them during clinicals. Someone did it for you and it may result in getting some new staff in your area.

close