Is an LTAC Hospital good for a graduate nurse?

  1. Hello,

    I am a recent graduate from a second degree program were I obtained my BSN I also have a BS in Business Administration as well. The market for new nurses is extremely tough in the Philadelphia area and I am interviewing with a LTAC facility next week. I am interested in working in Critical Care and thought that if I were offered this position I would learn a lot and be able to transfer to any ICU within some of the big hospitals down town.

    Is an LTAC hospital a good place for a graduate nurse who wants to specialize in Critical Care? I didn't learn much about LTAC's in nursing school and wanted to ask experienced nurses what they thought about this....

    I would appreciate any help/ suggestions/ feedback

  2. Visit zia238 profile page

    About zia238

    Joined: Apr '08; Posts: 29


  3. by   Nascar nurse
    You may not get a good response in this forum. This is a long term care forum & usually we don't have anything in common with a long term ACUTE care facilities.

    Sorry, good luck
  4. by   st4rl4dy
    I recently discovered the LTAC specialty, from what i understand it is much like a rehab or trauma floor at a hospital. Being Acute care i would think you'd come across acute patients who need to be in-patients longer. I feel it is not a great start for someone who wants to end up in critical care, but it is good enough place to practice a lot of your nursing skills.
  5. by   zia238
    Thank you for your opinion, I appreciate it! I want to specialize in critical care and it's really difficult right now in the Philadelphia area for a new nurse to get into. I was hoping that I could spend a little over a year learning valuable skills that I could transfer into a hospital ICU floor.....
  6. by   Love-A-Nurse
    i would say yes if the one you are interviewing for is like the one i worked.

    we had a variety of patients and those patients were intubated, had trachs, drips [titrate] many different lines [hickman, picc, etc,] drew our own blood, keep our codes on our floor instead of a transfer to the hospital's based units among many things i have not named.

    the disadvantage, 4 patients each on a "good" day and have had up to 7 when there was a call-in. the cn would help tremendously [depending on who the charge was].

    wound nurse, therapy and resp was part of the team, too.
  7. by   zia238

    Thank you for replying to my message, I really appreciate it. This LTAC does have a variety of patients who are intubated with trachs, they do have cardiac drips that need to be titrated (but they have a room that holds 4 patients together who are on these drips), Hickman, DobHoff, Piccs, etc. and we also draw our own blood too!

    So the skills I would learn are amazing! However, it is a ratio of 7:1... each RN has 1 CNA... sometimes we can get 8 patients but the DON said she likes to keep it at 7:1... which scares me! I am afraid that the ratio is to high for patients who are so complex and don't want to risk my license or the care of one of my patients because I have too much on my plate..... Is a 7:1 ratio normal?
  8. by   Love-A-Nurse
    my stars! the normal ratio is 7:1? okay, this is pitiful. we normally had 4:1 and this was risky. the times we had 7, it was not safe, period.

    even a seasoned nurse would run. i did. yes, you will learn a lot, but...

    how long is the orientation and how your preceptor responds to new orientees will be a couple of the deciding factors among others things.

    let us know your decision.
  9. by   aam83
    Wonderful place to start. You don't get extensive training though so you have to be honest about your skill set.