New Grad NICU Support Thread - page 8

Calling all New Grad NICU nurses...thanks to a thread started by NurseDevonL, we have decided to start a support group. Hopefully some of our more experienced NICU nurses will look in every so often... Read More

  1. Visit  gibson0726 profile page
    0
    Quote from MsJade
    Wow its great hearing about all the new grad's job positions in the NICU. Hearing everyones stories makes me even more excited to finally graduate. I also wish to work in the NICU right after I pass my boards. However, I am still in my last semester of nursing school and I am precepting in a adult medsurg unit b/c it was the only thing available for me. Do I have a chance to win my first nursing job in the NICU if i havent precepted in one ??
    You can absolutely get a job without prior experience in the NICU. A lot of NICU managers are aware that we do not get a lot of exposure to the NICU during nursing school. Honestly, I have only been a NICU nurse for 7 months and I have already forgotten much of the "adult" stuff I learned in nursing school. I had to relearn so many things and it is like a whole different world. It has been extremely challenging and I am just ready for it all to click..the seasoned RN's tell me that won't happen until I have been working for 2-3 years!

    I have also talked to nurses who started in other areas prior to working in the NICU. They said it was pretty hard to shift their thinking to neonates because it was so different, however their time management was already ingrained. Good luck and if NICU is really where you want to work, I say go for it! It the passion for your job that will get you back to work after a hard shift.
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  3. Visit  lovelyhelper23 profile page
    0
    I need help moving to Miami so I can be closer to family!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! HELP! Ok so I work in Maryland right now, started in NICU as a new grad earing $27 an hour as base rate. Now that I have 1 year experience I want to work in a NICU in Florida...what are the chances of me earning $27 in Miami area having the one year experience and being able to talk and write fluently in Spanish?
  4. Visit  lovelyhelper23 profile page
    0
    Oh and I want a NICU RN position of course. So does anyone recommend any good hospitals to work in Miami.
  5. Visit  Akeos profile page
    0
    I graduated in may and haven't been able to find a job yet. NICU is definatly where I want to end up and I talked to the nurse recruiter at children's hospital, she told be to even be considered make sure my cover letter was "all about the babies" and how I would care for them. Can anyone please help with putting this cover letter together? I'm kinda lost when it comes to writing it. Thanks!
  6. Visit  Corkybabe12 profile page
    1
    Greetings all!! I am in my last semester of nursing school, and I just accepted a GN position in the level III NICU that I currently work in as a tech- I cannot wait to read all of the tips and support on here!
    livelifeloveRN likes this.
  7. Visit  MissD_RN profile page
    1
    Hello everyone!

    I graduated with my BSN in May, passed my NCLEX-RN exam in July and was hired at a level III hospital center in NYC this past week! It is a NICU position and I am extremely grateful, nervous, and excited. I don't start for a couple of weeks but I am so glad this thread was created because hopefully it can decrease some of my anxiety. Anyone have any advice for a new grad NICU nurse?

    Thanks, hope to hear from someone soon!
    Bortaz, RN likes this.
  8. Visit  Bortaz, RN profile page
    1
    My advice: Ask questions! If you don't know/understand something...ASK! Never assume anything with those babies.
    MissD_RN likes this.
  9. Visit  MissD_RN profile page
    1
    Thank you. I will definitely remember to ask lots of questions!
    Bortaz, RN likes this.
  10. Visit  Shanlee79 profile page
    1
    Just wanted to share...I was accepted to do my final practicum in a level 3 NICU at our children's hospital. I am super excited and NERVOUS. I start in 3 months and so looking forward to it!!!
    Bortaz, RN likes this.
  11. Visit  SmashleyRN profile page
    0
    Hello All!
    I graduated from a BScN program in april this year and got my RN registration in August. I did my final placement in a well known pediatric hospital on their cardiology unit and fell in LOVE with caring for infants and children! I just interviewed for a NICU position this past monday on a small level II unit and I couldn't be happier. I feel the interview went very well as the unit manager said to me after the interview "You showed a lot of initiative and that really works in your favour"!! The very next morning I got a call from the nurse recruiter (who I've been in contact with for a few weeks) asking me to fill out the consent forms for a background check and my reference checks and send it right back to her!! I feel really confident about this but I am trying very hard not to hold my breath until a formal offer is given.

    My question to all you new grad NICU nurses! What did you find was the hardest part about starting in the NICU? I'm trying to see what is (potentially) ahead of me in the months to come.
  12. Visit  gobananas15 profile page
    0
    I had an interview yesterday at the NICU in the hospital that I already work for. I really hope I get it, as I LOVE NICU and can't see myself working on any other unit. They told me it would be about 2 weeks before they finish everything and I am dreading the wait! Any one out there from Dallas area?
  13. Visit  gibson0726 profile page
    3
    Quote from SmashleyRN
    Hello All!
    I graduated from a BScN program in april this year and got my RN registration in August. I did my final placement in a well known pediatric hospital on their cardiology unit and fell in LOVE with caring for infants and children! I just interviewed for a NICU position this past monday on a small level II unit and I couldn't be happier. I feel the interview went very well as the unit manager said to me after the interview "You showed a lot of initiative and that really works in your favour"!! The very next morning I got a call from the nurse recruiter (who I've been in contact with for a few weeks) asking me to fill out the consent forms for a background check and my reference checks and send it right back to her!! I feel really confident about this but I am trying very hard not to hold my breath until a formal offer is given.

    My question to all you new grad NICU nurses! What did you find was the hardest part about starting in the NICU? I'm trying to see what is (potentially) ahead of me in the months to come.
    Hi Smashley! It really sounds like you have the job in the bag. I have been a NICU RN since January, on my own since the beginning of June..gosh, I can't believe it's been that long already! I won't be considered a new grad for much longer. Crazy how fast time flies. I work in a large level II/III unit. The hardest part for me when I started was the feeling of not knowing what I was doing. Also, I was really scared that I would miss a change in condition and a baby would die, and it would be all my fault. I don't have kids, so even just picking them up and handling them was so awkward for me in the beginning. I only spent 8 hours total in the NICU during clinicals and even then, I was not allowed to touch the babies. I honestly felt like I went to nursing school for nothing, as the NICU is an entirely different world. The vital sign ranges are different, meds are very specialized, even the amounts you give of some drugs are hard to wrap your mind around (a 0.05ml dose of something is very common)!

    I spent about 4 weeks under a preceptor on the level II side before I worked a couple of shifts on my own..and it was terrifying! Just the responsibility of taking care of someone else's child weighed on me. After that, I oriented for 3 months on the level III side. Talk about scary! I was really intimidated by ventilated infants and I hated moving them. Now, 4 months later, I am putting them prone without a problem. Starting IVs still prove to be a challenge, I'm about 50:50, but I haven't had many opportunities to start them.

    You will learn a lot from the nurses that have been there a long time. I have been awed by some of the nurses who "just had a bad feeling" about a baby, and sure enough they were right. I want to get to that point, where I call a doc and ask for a bunch of blood test because I have a "feeling" that a baby is going bad. I guess that will come with more experience. Granted, I have called a doc because of assessment changes (up on O2 or green residuals) and gotten new orders, and that always makes me feel good!

    Since you will potentially be working on the level II side, apnea/bradycardia will be an issue you will see a lot. Also, feeding intolerances and NEC are common problems you have to be vigilant about. I am always so paranoid about their little bellies! NEC can claim a life in a matter of hours. I've seen it and it's horrible. I don't mean to scare you in any way, but these are all things you will probably see.

    I love my job more than anything in this world and I cannot see myself doing anything else. It is amazing to me how much I learn every day. I love my little peanuts and there's nothing more rewarding than seeing a little one go home! Sorry for writing a book, heehee. Let me know if you have any more questions.. I really hope that you get the job!
  14. Visit  SmashleyRN profile page
    0
    Quote from chickensRN
    Hi Smashley! It really sounds like you have the job in the bag. I have been a NICU RN since January, on my own since the beginning of June..gosh, I can't believe it's been that long already! I won't be considered a new grad for much longer. Crazy how fast time flies. I work in a large level II/III unit. The hardest part for me when I started was the feeling of not knowing what I was doing. Also, I was really scared that I would miss a change in condition and a baby would die, and it would be all my fault. I don't have kids, so even just picking them up and handling them was so awkward for me in the beginning. I only spent 8 hours total in the NICU during clinicals and even then, I was not allowed to touch the babies. I honestly felt like I went to nursing school for nothing, as the NICU is an entirely different world. The vital sign ranges are different, meds are very specialized, even the amounts you give of some drugs are hard to wrap your mind around (a 0.05ml dose of something is very common)!

    I spent about 4 weeks under a preceptor on the level II side before I worked a couple of shifts on my own..and it was terrifying! Just the responsibility of taking care of someone else's child weighed on me. After that, I oriented for 3 months on the level III side. Talk about scary! I was really intimidated by ventilated infants and I hated moving them. Now, 4 months later, I am putting them prone without a problem. Starting IVs still prove to be a challenge, I'm about 50:50, but I haven't had many opportunities to start them.

    You will learn a lot from the nurses that have been there a long time. I have been awed by some of the nurses who "just had a bad feeling" about a baby, and sure enough they were right. I want to get to that point, where I call a doc and ask for a bunch of blood test because I have a "feeling" that a baby is going bad. I guess that will come with more experience. Granted, I have called a doc because of assessment changes (up on O2 or green residuals) and gotten new orders, and that always makes me feel good!

    Since you will potentially be working on the level II side, apnea/bradycardia will be an issue you will see a lot. Also, feeding intolerances and NEC are common problems you have to be vigilant about. I am always so paranoid about their little bellies! NEC can claim a life in a matter of hours. I've seen it and it's horrible. I don't mean to scare you in any way, but these are all things you will probably see.

    I love my job more than anything in this world and I cannot see myself doing anything else. It is amazing to me how much I learn every day. I love my little peanuts and there's nothing more rewarding than seeing a little one go home! Sorry for writing a book, heehee. Let me know if you have any more questions.. I really hope that you get the job!
    Thanks so much ChickensRN! I loved your little book! I do have a slight advantage with the holding babies and being comfortable around them from my 4 months on a pediatric cardiology unit! Most of our kiddies were congenital and under a year old. I've had wonderful (sarcasm) experiences with apnea since in our step down unit we had a bunch of babes on Milrinone/PGE's to help their little hearts work/keep their PDA's open until surgery and both those drips can cause apnec spells. I remember the transition from adult to pediatric took me a month to wrap my head around. Assessments are so different and factoring in feeds and cluster care! WOW! I've only had one kid with NEC and i hate having babes who are NPO because they just don't understand why they can't eat.

    I had an amazing preceptor on cardiology! she helped me and pushed me so much! and I just heard from her that the hospital i interviewed with contacted her for a reference!! I sooo can't wait to start nursing especially if its with the little peanuts and pickles in the NICU!


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