Disappointed in my clinical rotation..

  1. 0 I've started my clinical rotation in medicine, and I'm really disappointed in the unit i've been placed in. All my friends are in hospital with a variety of seriously ill, acute patients. My medicine floor is mostly older adults, with CHF, pneumonia, etc. I'm not trying to say that these patients are any less valuable or anything like that, but I hope to work in the ICU or emergency when I graduate, and I would do anything to get more learning opportunities than will be available on my floor. How can I get the most out of my rotation?
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  3. Visit  robdob profile page

    About robdob

    Joined Jan '14; Posts: 3.

    22 Comments so far...

  4. Visit  meanmaryjean profile page
    15
    Well, first off do not complain. The type of patient you are describing comprise the bulk of ER and ICU patient populations. (In other words, it ain't all 'Life in the ER'). You can learn a heck of a lot regarding time management, assessment and common medications. New grads seldom get hired into critical care/ ED. So become proficient at caring for the type of patient presented to you.

    Seriously, the LAST thing you want to do is complain about the 'quality' of patient assignment in clinicals. (Not saying you have- just a word to the wise!)
  5. Visit  PixieRN14 profile page
    5
    Out of curiosity, what semester are you in? I am in my last semester and have been on various floors and these type of patients comprise the bulk of what I have seen. There are many learning opportunities with these patients.
    RunnerRN2015, sharpeimom, RunBabyRN, and 2 others like this.
  6. Visit  LadyFree28 profile page
    5
    In addition to what meanmaryjean stated:

    Get the most out of your clinical rotation by being objective; use the nursing process to understand and care for your patients; learn about prioritizing and planning for your patients; make yourself available for learning opportunities such as education/teaching the patient about their illness, discharge planning, care coordination, if that is utilized on the unit you are on; you will need a good grasp of that in your nursing practice no matter where you go.
    psu_213, sharpeimom, RunBabyRN, and 2 others like this.
  7. Visit  Dranger profile page
    9
    Get used to it, traumas don't happen all of the time. 90% of patients will be older with CHF, pneumonia, COPD, Renal failure, DKA, A-fib or some other chronic condition.

    You do realize it is VERY hard to get an ICU or ED job right out of school right? Like close to 0 unless you can snag a residency that hundreds apply for....
  8. Visit  loriangel14 profile page
    1
    Take every placement as a learning opportunity. You get out of it what you put in. Sure it's not as "glamorous" as the ER or ICU but like the others have said, these are the people you will be largely dealing with.
    RunBabyRN likes this.
  9. Visit  Pepper The Cat profile page
    2
    You will see a lot of pneumonia, CHF, etc in ER. And never under estimate how quickly an older person with pneumonia can turn on you.
    RunBabyRN and That Guy like this.
  10. Visit  Compassion_x profile page
    2
    But med-surg is where you gain valuable skills that will allow you to work in the ICU or ER in the future. You have to start low and build up. It's HIGHLY unlikely you're going to go from nursing student to critical care nurse. You need experience first
    RunBabyRN and loriangel14 like this.
  11. Visit  SHGR profile page
    4
    Quote from robdob
    I've started my clinical rotation in medicine
    No, you are doing a nursing clinical. Not medicine (unless you are a med student?)

    Quote from robdob
    How can I get the most out of my rotation?
    By being curious, by looking up every medication you run across, all of your patients' comorbidities, and honing your assessment skills. By talking to your patients. By watching nurses who do their work well. By paying attention. Asking this question is a good place to start
  12. Visit  Mewsin profile page
    1
    Really? I think we all get that this is a nursing student. Next semester I do a nursing clinical rotation on medicine, I don't think we need to get not picky.

    My advice, learn as much as you can you never know when things will go downhill on medicine. I was actually on our medicine wing for part of my clinicals this semester we experienced someone having autonomic dysreflexia. It may seem mundane but there is a lot to learn and do there.
    loriangel14 likes this.
  13. Visit  kfitzy89 profile page
    1
    I've found that every experience is what you make of it. I was on the neuro floor for my med-surg II rotation and had NO interest in Neuro whatsoever. My instructor even apologized to me as it was my very last choice on my preference list. That set aside, I reassured her that not everyone can get what they want and went into it with an open mind. Make yourself interested, show the other nurses that you want to learn and be involved and they will go out of their way to teach and show you things. I still do not care for neuro to this day, but I learned a great deal during that rotation by staying positive. Hang in there, it only gets better!
    loriangel14 likes this.
  14. Visit  lillymom profile page
    1
    That's going to be what most of your clinical experience will be. Talk to your instructor and let them know what exactly you would be interested in and maybe if they see a pt. like that they will assign them to you. When I was in clinical I kept getting stroke pt's and I talked with my instructor about it and she made up a paper with all our names on it and asked us to put the admit Dx on it so we would get more of a variety. It was also a small unit so we often asked if we could float to another unit and they allowed us each to do rotations on other units.
    loriangel14 likes this.
  15. Visit  Esme12 profile page
    4
    Quote from robdob
    I've started my clinical rotation in medicine, and I'm really disappointed in the unit i've been placed in. All my friends are in hospital with a variety of seriously ill, acute patients. My medicine floor is mostly older adults, with CHF, pneumonia, etc. I'm not trying to say that these patients are any less valuable or anything like that, but I hope to work in the ICU or emergency when I graduate, and I would do anything to get more learning opportunities than will be available on my floor. How can I get the most out of my rotation?
    You mean....Your clinical rotation on a medical floor. Are you a med student? What semester are you?

    While your DREAM will be ICU or Emergency medicine...it is difficult to get a position a a new grad. The patients in these areas will present with CHF, Pulmonary Edema, pneumonia so it would behoove you to know these diseases.

    How do you get more out of it...? look up and study every disease process, understand the physiology...not just the pathology...the disease and why does it develop. Look up every co-morbidity and how it may or may not contribute to the disease process. Look up every med. Find out why it is given, how does the medicine work, how does it alter the physiology and how it affects the patients outcome. What nursing care would these patients need? why? What should you look for? what would indicate a worsening of their condition and why? What should you focus your assessment on? HOw can you teach them to better their quality of life at home?

    I think there are plenty of ways to benefit your education. CHF while a chronic disease have acute episodes. How do you determine an acute episode of a chronic disease? How does pneumonia affect the elderly? How does being elderly affect their recovery?

    I think there is plenty to learn.
    sharpeimom, psu_213, SoldierNurse22, and 1 other like this.


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