I believe that preceptoring is the role of every experienced nurse, as we have all been there once on the other end. However I have seen a number of threads where ppl disagree with this, and am wondering why.
1.Do nurses in your hospital get any financial incentive to do it?
2.How experienced do you think you should be before you become one?
3.Do you have an education programme in your hospital to assist you to do it?
4.What qualities do you think are required?
I am going to a preceptorship education day next week, and I have nearly finished my new graduate programme. So I'll find out what my hospital expects, but I'd be interested to hear what everyone's thoughts and experiences are as well.
Nov 2, '07
Our hospital's DON put together a preceptor program and got it approved by the big wigs. Those of us chosen to be preceptors attended classes and were given a $0.75/hr raise. The program was superb. Each new hire was to have their own preceptor, working that nurse's schedule. Only in extreme circumstances was the orientee to have a different preceptor. Each orientee had a notebook with skills checklists and goals for each day and week. At the end of the week, they would meet with the preceptor for feedback and to set goals for the next week. Orientees were to have a minimum of 12 weeks orientation, but could extend if either the preceptor or the orientee felt it was necessary. Under no circumstances were the preceptor and orientee to count in staffing. In the beginning, the orientee was acclimated to the unit, became familiar with hospital and unit-specific policies, then by week two began to do patient care alongside the preceptor on only one patient. There was more to it, but you get the drift.
It was a very slow, deliberate process. Well thought out, and could have worked had administration supported the program. However, once they saw the bottom line (omg! the floor is "over-staffed"), we were told we HAD to count preceptors in our staffing. They also began to count the orientees in staffing once they were past 4-6 weeks in their orientation. They were expected to take a full load (sometimes higher, "because there are two of them!!") and before long, the entire thing just fell apart. Then, of course, administration wondered why there was such a high turnover with new hires.
Ah well =\
Nov 3, '07
I would disagree not for myself personally because I have preceptored and enjoyed it, BUT there are nurses who don't do well in the student/preceptor role. They either don't have the personality for it, and by that I mean the patience it takes to answer alot of questions and show someone a procedure or routine that they have been doing for years with one eye closed. And if we were all honest, we would admit there are people we work with that we wouldn't wish even our least favorite students on. Of course there are also those in our profession who take on students so they have someone else doing their work for a said amount of time, and they can have a break. Yes, that is the truth also. Would I do it again? For sure, because I really like being in the teacher role and feel I have a lot of experience and insight to offer newbies. But it is not for everyone, and shouldn't be forced on someone that is not comfortable or appropriate to take on that role.
Nov 3, '07
I believe that it is everyone's responsibility to support the precepting of new hires ... and be polite and reasonably pleasant and competent if they need to help out with precepting ocassionally when necessary. However, being a regular preceptor and being responsible for someone else's learning on a regular basis is a different thing altogether. That system should recognize that not everyone is well-suited to that type of teaching role and plan accordingly.
Being a good teacher/preceptor is a special skill and should be recognized and compensated as such. There should be programs that teach nurses how to precept and nurses who take on this leadership activity should be given ongoing support for that role and compensated for it.
My hospital has a workshop to train preceptors and has ocassional meetings and classes for them to discuss issues with precepting. They also give preceptors a differential of $1.50 per hour. Finally, orientees are not counted in the staffing numbers. The preceptor/orientee combo is given a "1-nurse assignment" to share together. I think we could do better, but we are on the right track.
But everyone should be prepared to help out a little in an "emergency" and be willing to be supportive of new hires on an ongoing basis.
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