Quote from Chip_04
I am starting an accelerated second degreeprogram in May and am planning to work in critical care after I graduate. I was just wondering what the typical duties of a critical care nurse are. Also, what are the rules with male nurses giving bed baths? I think the icu sounds like an exciting place to work but i do not think I would feel comfortable giving a bath to someone. IIs that something that nurses on all shifts are required to do?
First you need to finish school before deciding on a specialty.
Second, many ICU level care areas do not have techs/aides. Therefore you are often more likely to be giving bathes there than on the standard M/S unit. Even if you were not giving a full bath per say, ICU level patients often are incontinent, have skin break down issues, have diarrhea or sweating issues requiring a great deal of clean up. The ICU patient is also more likely to be physically unable to do their own intimate care,or the aide not permitted to do it w/o RN assistance, due to presence of tubes, vents, art lines, NGs,tube feeds, etc. Or the patient is so unstable, great care must be taken with repositioning and hygiene.
On M/S, one does occasionally have a few self care pts, or some that can at least do their own pericare. Plus there are more aides and the patients are such that they can handle them.
Most recently, I worked an ICU level onco unit. ICU level patients were on CVVHD, vents, art lines, multiple drips, in DIC and acute tumor lysis. They were very unstable and it was the RNs job at night to bath them, and on days to maintain hygiene.
Your gender has little to nothing to do with your capabilities as a nurse. And bathing patients is an accepted and required part of nursing in ANY specialty. While an occasional patient/facility may consider gender when rendering certain care, one usually just trades off that part of pt care with a nurse of the requested gender.
A good question might be what are your expectations of working as a nurse?