Plans of a new ICU nurse. ICU Manager please help!!

  1. Here is my situation. The city where I live has two main hospital systems. They are both on hiring freezes due to low census / the economy. I am recently hired into a MICU as a GN, in another city about 2 hours away. Since this hospital was gracious enough to hire me as a GN and train me in their MICU. What is the socially acceptable amount of time to keep this job?
    redpinkhe:redpinkhe Now then! I'm not "already complaining about my new job." I am trying to plan my career path which involves me getting experience at a level 1 trauma center. I have big plans and I am sincerely asking for advice.

    I want to repay this hospital and this team for their graciousness in teaching me how to care for critically ill patients. I will be a good employee, until it is time for me to move on, I promise!

    My thoughts are minimum 1 year, but I hesitate to think of commuting 4 hours a day for 2 years. Does anyone have an opinion?? I hope I have offended anyone, i really am grateful for this opportunity to work and learn
  2. 7 Comments

  3. by   TemperStripe
    First of all, I am but a lowly new grad working in an ICU, not a manager. That being said...

    How long is your orientation? If it is a decent length, I would plan on staying at least a year AFTER that. At the very least. It costs something like $55,000 to properly train a new grad ICU nurse (at least that is what I read somewhere.) I am sure they would be very sad to see you leave for CRNA school or whatever other "big plans" you have. And often times, big plans involve big letters of recommendation One of the large teaching hospitals in my area makes their new grads sign a two-year contract that begins after the orientation ends.

    My feeling is this. We new grads need all the experience we can get at the bedside before leaping into deeper waters. No matter what direction we end up pursuing within the profession, our time at the bedside can do nothing but help us. The more, the better, as far as I'm concerned. I am definitely not suggesting that you put your plans on hold indefinitely, but why not enjoy the ride?
  4. by   ghillbert
    There's no way I would work 2 hours away - you poor thing!! It is very frustrating to train people, only to have them leave and take that knowledge and experience elsewhere. Having said that, there is little loyalty from hospitals towards nursing staff, so do what is best for you. I would think at least a year for you to be minimally competent to work in a higher acuity unit - after a year in ICU, you are still a novice.
  5. by   hopefullICUnurse77
    I do realize that I will still be a beginner after a year of experience. The next step of my big plan is to get into a level 1 or 2 trauma center ICU. I'm also working on getting my EMT-I cert right now, with plans, eventually to get my EMT-P. If you can't tell what my big plans are, i'd like to fly. I don't care if i fly as a medic or an RN, but I know that brunt of my experience needs to be in a bigger hospital. The hospital where I am currently hired is a level 4 trauma center, but they told me in the interview that we don't ever get the traumas. There are too many bigger hospitals close by.

    So I definitely appreciate y'alls responses. My orientation is 13 weeks, roughly estimated at the cost of $60,000 to train me. I will definitely stay for a year beyond my orientation, it seems like that is all I am willing to commit right now because 16 hour days is killer! There is no chance that I will move, so commuting is the only way I will be able to do this job.
  6. by   groovy jeff
    Perhaps renting a room from another hospital employee for your 3 days???? Tough spot.

    As a past HR guy, I can tell you that most programs where they pay for education or have a serious training program are usually an 18 month to 2 year committment.

    Good luck!
  7. by   icunurse36
    Have you thought about seeing if you can stay in the hospital in an empty bed somewhere instead of driving 2 hours each way? What about moving there temporarily for the next year?
  8. by   hopefullICUnurse77
    My income will finally be a second income in our family. There is no possibility of moving there for the year as that will diminish the already small wage they will be paying me there. My mother lives in the city where my job is, so I can always crash there, but the problem is that my wife travels, often 6 weeks at a time, so this means that if i do crash with my mom, i'll have to bring the dogs too. Altogether it is going to be a tough year, but I am happy to have a JOB at least. There are about 50% of my graduating class who are as of yet, unemployed. I want to remain loyal to this system for hiring me, but I am afraid it is going to be the minimum amount of time until I start applying to a system closer to home.
  9. by   GoldenFire5
    Whatever you decide to do, please make sure you're getting enough sleep. A 2 hour commute doesn't leave much time if you're working two or three shifts in a row. Be safe, for you and for your patients.