I have a background in ICU (MICU/CCU/SICU) and Tele (AMI, Cath, Vasc Sx, etc.) nursing, but have been contacted about working agency shifts. Most of the need is in tele (where I feel extremely comfortable) and Med/Surg (which is brand new). I want to branch out and am excited about learning new things. Although the company thinks that my experience with higher acuity patients will be enough, I wanted to hear from you guys.
Any tips for a Tele/ICU nurse working extra shifts in Med/Surg? Thank in advance!
May 30, '09
I think the main difference you will find is that you will probably cary a larger pt assignment on med/surg than you are used to. You will need to focus more on time management and prioritizing.
Jun 14, '09
I work in Med-Surg and am jealous of the experience others have in tele/ICU! The main thing, as mentioned, is the # of patients. For example, dayshift here can get up to 6, nightshift up to 10 (no monitors). It's a lot but you don't have to do VS as often, they're on routine meds (po, IVF, IV Abx), they're *usually* stable and some are self-sufficient. The main thing is time management so you can do all you're supposed to but for a lot more pts. We sometimes get tele/ICU nurses pulled to Med/Surg and that's their issue. I think that will be the main adjustment for you.
Jun 14, '09
yes, you can do it. Just remember, if you can work in med surg proficiently, you can work in any dept. Others may argue me on that point, but the time management skills, critical thinking skills, and patient load can truly be a test at times. Good luck!
Aug 6, '09
LOL anytime our ICU nurses float to the floor they drown! You should try to get some kind of orientation and learn the ropes before you know what you're getting into. Some shifts are worse than others but there's just no messing around. You gotta get things done, think fast and organize your priorities
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