I'm currently a RN in London with 3 years ccu/icu experience. I'm moving back to Los Angeles in the next few weeks and i'm seeking some advice from fellow RN'S who have worked in this part of the world.
I'd like to know since i've never worked in a US hospital the differences in practice. I do appreciate that all patients are patients, but there are little tips or differences that exists that one could learn and be prepared for. One of my current colleagues who is Canadian, tells me where by in the UK we have 1:1 nursing in the ICU, this is not standard practice in the States.
Any advice will be appreciated.
Thank-you all in advance.
Aug 20, '01
Would I like to work in that ICU with 1:1 nursing! Actually, in all the major centers I know of, 1:1 is pretty much reserved for the unstable patients. I have worked many shifts having 2 vents for an assignment, or 1 sick vent plus a more stable unvented person. Cardiacs are most often 2:1.
Good luck with your move and your transition back to the USA!
Aug 21, '01
Thanks for your reply Stormy, Patients in the United Kingdom tend to be sicker or rather unstable by the time they get into the ICU.
Most of these patients have one or more organ failure, are ventilated and may be on a number of inotropes as well as needing ballon pump support etc... as such the Nurse patient ratio does tend to be 1:1, Nurses may double up i.e. 2 patients to 1 nurse if the patients are what we term High dependency.
We tend to have High dependency units to care for these patients.
I am looking forward to finding out in practice, how having more than one patient at a time will be. I strongly believe my ability to prioritise and time management skills will hopefully stand me in good stead.
Thanks for the good luck wishes.