Clinicals?

  1. Hi everyone! I will be starting school to become an LPN on Jan.29th. I am really nervous and apprehensive and questioning whether I am making the right decision. I have been in retail for almost 20 years and have a disabled husband[2heart attacks & 2 open-heart bypasses] and two kids.I figure it is now or never!
    Anyway, back to the subject-clinicals. What does this really mean? Is it a word for the procedures you perform on a patient or for the work you perform outside of the classroom, or a little bit of both? Also, what types of things or procedures do you do in your training as an LPN? I think the reason I am so apprehensive is that I don't know what to expect and if I am up to the challenge. I don't worry as much about the book-learning part because LOL I can't kill someone when I'm studying!
    I truly appreciate any and all responses-you all seem like a great group of people on here! Pam
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  2. 9 Comments

  3. by   TheCommuter
    Clinical rotations are a form of externships, where the student nurse spends the day in a healthcare facility gathering hands-on experiences that will serve as preparation for the workforce.

    My clinical rotations included three 8-hour days per week at a particular healthcare facility. Our class learned the basics (bed baths, transferring, toileting) at a nursing home for several weeks. We then progressed to giving gastric tube feedings, blood sugars, medication administration, and injections at an acute care hospital. Our class went to a different hospital where we ambulated postsurgical patients, dressed wounds, removed surgical staples, catheterized patients, and passed medications. We spent some time at United Cerebral Palsy to learn about contractures, breathing treatments, activities, and other stuff.

    Overall, I accumulated 1,500 clinical rotation hours at 8 different facilities throughout my 1 year in LVN school.
  4. by   blueberrybon
    Pam:

    No worries! You'll be fine. Clinicals are time spent in various health care facilities where you put your newly learned skills to use.

    I don't know if all schools are pretty much alike, but as for the LPN school I went through, we had a lab class where we learned the various clinical skills, first out of the book, then on each other or using "dummies". We had to be checked off for the skills before we could use the skill during clinicals.

    My first round of clinicals was at a nursing home. We did assessments starting off with separate systems (integumentary, muskuloskeletal, respiratory, etc), we of course did vitals, and we did lots of concept mapping (learning how to group disorders/diseases with particular symptoms and putting together the pieces of a puzzle, if you will. Quite probably the thing that will be most accentuated is teaching you how to use the nursing process in absolutely everything you do. You will see this ALOT:
    • Assessment (of patient's needs)
    • Diagnosis (of human response needs that nursing can assist with)
    • Planning (of patient's care)
    • Implementation (of care)
    • Evaluation (of the success of the implemented care)
    If you get a handle on that before you start school, you can impress your instructors and classmates alike!

    Good luck to you!

    Blue
  5. by   TheCommuter
    Here's an example of what I do at the upscale nursing home where I am employed. I work in Texas, where the LVN scope of practice is very wide.

    At my workplace I pass medications, dress wounds, administer respiratory updrafts, give PEG tube feedings, perform simple treatments, obtain vital signs, catheterize people, give enemas and suppositories, manually disimpact obstipated patients, report lab values, obtain new orders, complete incident reports, do neurological assessments, fill out resident data sheets, do skin assessments, complete monthly summaries, chart on antibiotics, report changes in condition to the doctor, and supervise the CNAs. LVNs who are IV-certified are permitted to engage in IV therapy. There's more, but I can't think of anything else yet.
  6. by   pyseymo
    Thanks to both of you for your responses-I now have a much clearer picture of what I'll be doing. How early in the program do you usually start doing clinicals? And,.......MANUAL disimpaction?????????
  7. by   TheCommuter
    I started school in early October 2004, and by late November the class was going through the first clinical rotation.
  8. by   Coloradogrl
    We started school early December & in May we will be start clinicals
  9. by   Jules A
    Hi,
    We started clinicals about 3 weeks after school started but at first it was mostly just taking vitals, bed baths and personal care. You will be fine. The school will let you know what is expected and you will practice in lab. Congratulations on your new career. Jules
  10. by   blueberrybon
    Quote from Jules A
    Hi,
    We started clinicals about 3 weeks after school started but at first it was mostly just taking vitals
    Ditto....

    Blue
  11. by   nrsecarole
    Quote from pyseymo
    Thanks to both of you for your responses-I now have a much clearer picture of what I'll be doing. How early in the program do you usually start doing clinicals? And,.......MANUAL disimpaction?????????

    Think a B/P cuff for before & after, gloves, KY jelly. a bed pan, TP. and the bottom of a patient........

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