I was let go this time last month from my LTC facility and I recently got accepted to work with a staffing agency that will be sending me frequently to a LTAC facility. My official job description is Med-Surg nurse and this is really exciting to me!
However, I'm concerned now that I've forgotten most of what I learned in school. Not many of my skills were required in LTC, especially not the last month I was there because I was in AL/IL. Hospital and Med-surg is where my heart is, but I don't want to mess this up.
How can I make this a smooth transition, going from LTC to LTAC? The plus side is that I did clinicals at this LTAC facility but my teacher never let us have more than one patient at a time. I'm sure I can do that part okay since I had 40+ at the LTC facility but has anyone else done something like this?
Congratulations on your new job, but...a word of caution. As an agency nurse, you will be expected to hit the floor running. I am assuming you mean acute care (as in in-patient hospitals) when you refer to LTAC....if that is the case, here are my two cents. Working acute care is very different from LTC. Depending on the type of facility (trauma center vs community hospital) med-surg unit population may vary, which can be challenging and stressful , even for the most seasoned med-surg nurse. Because you are an agency nurse, there is a high expectation in you abilities and skills. The staff nurses will expect you, to be experienced and able to handle the assignment (with minimal assistance from them). It is true that you only get five patients in med-surg (most of the times), but five busy med-surg patients ( the new post-op with a zillion new orders, the one trying to get out of bed at the other end of the hallway, the new admission, and let's not forget the code browns) do not compare to 40 stable residents in LTC, who only require their routine B/P medication.I am not trying to discourage you, but from my experience as an ICU nurse, I can tell you that I hate the unsafe practice of nursing staffing agencies sending nurses to ICU units, who are not trainned in critical care and most of the time can not handle their assigment ( I once had to DNR an agency nurse whose backgound was in psych). All I can say is that it is stressful on the staff and very unsafe for patients. To answer your question...be pro-active, take a reflesher course, in-services, and it the facilities contacted with your agency offer orientation (even without pay), take it.Good luck
Last edit by Nccity2002 on Jun 4, '11
: Reason: Mod