How Can You Be A Nurse With No Clinical Background? - page 4

I find that odd. The foundation of nursing skill and ''critical thinking'' is having some experience with bedside care. I understand alot of new grads are running away from the bedside faster than ever, and alot of nurses are... Read More

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    Quote from rumwynnie
    I talked about this with my friend who wants to go into law -- we got onto the topic because she wanted me to be her nurse consultant. Our teacher was telling us it's possible for someone to go into nursing, and with how the law is written, yeah, they can have little to no clinical experience if there's a good reason (I think the example she used was if they couldn't move/lift a certain amount, they couldn't be expected to pull up a patient...this conversation was a while ago) because the school had to be able to accomodate. Their options then would be to go into nurse consulting, be a nurse rep, or do telenursing.

    That said, while I agree with you (it does bother me a little that some people are moving up the ranks with what seems like little to no experience), some people are really good managers and/or leaders. The person you described could've been delegating (as someone else said), or possibly just lazy, but it's not like he's representative of an entire group of people.

    Regardless, at the end of the day, I'd rather someone who can actually manage people and lead them to something good rather than someone who has 30+ years experience, but can't get a group of people to cooperate.
    Your friend should probably do some serious soul searching and research before heading to law school. It is increasingly hard for lawyers, even those with experience, to find jobs. I am a lawyer, although I have let my license lapse because it was too expensive to keep it up. I've been working as a nurse since about 6 months after I passed the Bar. I couldn't find a job anywhere as a lawyer, despite graduating with decent grades from one of the top 40 schools in the nation. But, to the bright eyed students applying to law school, my school represents me as being employed in their statistics! They tell recruits that they have a 98% employment rate, but I count towards that percentage because I am employed doing something, anything. And it's not just my state, it's nationwide. The New York Times just did some articles about it. Okay, off my soapbox.
    PMFB-RN and redhead_NURSE98! like this.

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    Acute care experience is valuable, yes, that can't be denied. But, if someone states acute care just isn't their thing, and they enjoy clinics more, then that is still clinical experience, just of a different kind. If this person wants to manage in an acute care setting, then I do agree. It would be wise to have clinical experience in that setting, but 1 person you encounter that doesn't seem all that interested in nursing or learning nursing does not sum up the whole (that don't really care for acute care and would rather work in a clinic right out of nursing school). Every area of nursing is important, and while I work in acute care, I don't think acute care is superior to an outpatient setting. Those that work in the outpatient setting get more opportunity to educate the same people consistently, which is the foundation for preventative medicine.
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    I graduated with my ADN nursing program in 2004 (my second career), my RN-BSN in 2008 and my MSN-CRA in 2012 so I don't have tons of bedside nursing experience. I always knew that I would eventually work in Oncology research, but felt that I should have some clinical experience. I threw myself into bedside nursing, worked registry so I could be comfortable working in any facility, and also did 3 years of travel nursing. Travel nurses are pretty much thrown onto a floor and expected to just start working. What I learned, from all the experience I jammed into 5 years, was that there are some really poorly trained nurses out there who I think should not be on the floor. It made me realize that good nurses are the nurses that want to be good. When they are not great at certain skills they find ways to learn and look to nurses who can help and they get better. Also, a lot of new nurses are entering the profession as their second career so they have the experience and maturity it takes to lead.

    I have met nurses who have been on the floor for 10 years and they only know their floor, but lack any further advanced knowledge. The great thing about nursing is that you can work in a small community hospital, on the same floor for years or you can try many different things, or advance your education. Your experience or education level does not make you a good nurse, but rather your passion, care of patients, and skills. There are great nurse educators that would make terrible bedside nurses, and great bedside nurses that would make terrible nurse educators. Variety is the beauty of nursing. I love nursing and admire all my fellow nurses. Yes, there are some nurses out there that don't care and only want a pay check, but to make assumptions on a narrow group of people is dismissing all the great and wonderful nurses out there. As a professional group we should celebrate each others victories.
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    Finding your path in nursing is one off the most difficult things to achieve as a nurse. People make good managers, (nurses flip a coin), I have seen great managers that have had lots of clinical experience and those who are terrible as managers and managers with little clinical nursing experience at all being great.

    Great managers lead, empower and develop others to succeed. It is through the actions and talents of our teams and staff that that make managers succeed, we are by nature parasitic, success = success just as failure must = failure. There is the perception that managers push the company line most of the time and it is sad to say this is often true, I have seen this cause total collapse in teams and services. Managers are often the piggy in the middle.

    Clinical experience in any form is important to managers and educators in the nursing profession it allows for a base of understanding and to others can be seen as paying dues to the profession of nursing.

    Just my opinon........................
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    While I was in nursing school I worked for the Dean of Nursing at a major hospital here. She worked at the bedside for only 1 year and left! Hmmm not to bad in my opinion!
    RNtobeinSoCal likes this.
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    Don't judge those who don't have med-surg experience. About 50% of nurses work OUTSIDE hospitals. Also, please consider the fact that many nurses try and try and try but just haven't been able to get a job in a hospital! We take work where we can get it - I'm crushed I haven't been able to get into a hospital, but value the experience I am getting outside.

    The nursing tree has sooooooo many branches, all beautiful leaves in their own right.
    db2xs, buytheshoes11, T-Bird78, and 1 other like this.
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    Quote from All4NursingRN
    I find that odd. The foundation of nursing skill and ''critical thinking'' is having some experience with bedside care.

    No offense but working in a clinic is a joke compared to the other areas of nursing
    Okay, as a clinic nurse with no previous clinical background you've doubly ticked me off. I'm so glad you clarified your point about being a nurse manager with no clinical background. I've worked in a place where the manager wasn't even a nurse, and another place where the manager was a nurse promoted internally. It is much easier when the manager is a nurse, even if it's in a clinic setting. Clinic nursing does have its challenges and if you've never worked in it then don't be telling everyone how much of a joke it is.
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    I'm not going to lie, but if the implication is that you have to start with bedside care as a new nurse--that's a little insulting tor me. I just left a med-surg job in which I lasted up the three month mark before I had to resign. It was horrible. Now I'm trying to start fresh and get my experience in a doctor's office--an environment where I think I'll be more comfortable. (In fact, I should be preparing for that interview.)

    I'm one of those people where, bedside nursing is just not for me. I don't think it's necessary to try and do it if you know it's not for you. I should have known that my personality wasn't going to match well with the acute environment, but--I gave it a shot as I was told to do. At the cost of many sleepless days, inability to eat, and anxiety so high that it hasn't gone away a full month after leaving. I think about my old job and I get so anxious I want to cry because I just feel like such a failure for it.

    I look into OR and doctor's offices because I feel that's still experience with hands-on nursing. No, I won't be putting in catheters or giving PEG-tube feedings or any of that, but I'll still be doing patient care. I'll see patients come in, assess their condition, and use critical thinking to identify problems or possible inquiries. Nursing started as a bedside thing, but it's become so diverse of a profession that this really isn't the case anymore.
    IloveNursing2214 likes this.
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    I definitely think there is some value to bedside nursing when starting your career. You definitely do have more credibility when you have acute care experience. However, it is not for everyone and Nursing is so diverse, you just have to find what works for you. I've been a nurse for over 10 years, 4 of those in the ER. I've been in clinics now for the last 6-7 years,and oddly enough,I'm making more at my clinic job now than I ever did bustin my butt in the ER! No more long hours, weekends off, holidays off, home by 5pm.
    Last edit by ksgirl2012 on Feb 5, '13
    KelRN215 likes this.
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    Depends on the unit/floor. I think it difficult when one has to take over a floor that perhaps has some interpersonal/morale issues and if you don't know how to work the floor then how can you solve what is inappropriate on the floor? However, if the floor is run seamlessly with a number of experienced seasoned charge nurses, then it could be possible to manage without experience. With all that being said, you do need to be able to jump in and assist if needed. And with little to no clinical experience, that may be an issue. Any good leader would and should take time to be involved on their floor, be visable, and to perhaps take a patient on each shift for the first few months. Really get to know the floor, the workings, etc. I think a lot of resentment comes from managers who need to speak to nurses about patient issues when they haven't spent a moment trying to prioritize a day. A good team is a good team, and that includes the manager.


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