Advice on selecting a practicum?

  1. Hi, all,

    I'm a senior BSN student -- nontraditional (age 43), high GPA, self-motivated and all that stuff... but I'm very ADD and am absolutely TERRIFIED of having to juggle more than 2 patients at a time. I KNOW I don't want to do med/surg... actually I'm not at all interested in hospital work.

    I think I eventually want to do either primary care, Peace Corps-type clinic work in other countries, or community health -- situations where I'm more likely to be able to focus (hopefully one patient at a time?) and work with less stress. I know my limits, and I make mistakes when I can't focus.

    My nursing program finishes up with 200 hours of practicum -- usually in either med/surg or ICU -- but sometimes they'll allow good students to work in other units if we can arrange it.

    Three questions (somewhat related):
    1. If I DON'T do either med/surg or ICU and find something else, am I knocking myself out of the running for a lot of jobs?

    2. What other areas should I look at that will allow me to focus on one patient at a time? Will the lack of med/surg experience be tremendously detrimental in those areas?

    3. Are there any other hospital units that are good for practicing skills but have lower acuity/stress/patient loads?

    Thanks for any advice!

    •  
  2. 2 Comments

  3. by   TakeTwoAspirin
    Look into being an OR nurse. They only have one patient at a time, and depending on the surgeries you can get a fairly high turn-over of people throughout the day - so you won't be bored!

    Good luck whatever you decide, but there is a place out there for you. You just have to find it.
  4. by   futurecnm
    I don't think you are hurting yourself if you try to get another area for your practicum. I know we have a variety of options in our class. I had an ICU one, then was just offered a new ED one and took that. I already did an internship in med/surg so I knew I wanted to try a specialty area. I agree with the above poster that OR might be something you like. I did some shadowing in OR and it is a whole different atmosphere and job! How about home health? We have a couple of people doing that. Hospice? I know you still have a lot of pt in hospice but it i a different atmosphere than med/surg. Good luck!

close