Big Hospital VS. Small Hospital Experience for new grad

  1. 0
    Well I am soon to graduate with my BSN in May. Surprisingly I have two good job offers already on the table. The first is from a big hospital in Macon, Ga on a med surg floor which an hour away from where I live. And the second is a rural hospital in Dublin, Ga in the ICU in which I am now doing my practicum at. Dublin is 30 mins away from me. My question is, which is better for a new grad experience wise, a big hospital or a small or does it even matter?
  2. 5 Comments so far...

  3. 0
    Are you trying to go for a MSN in the future? and in which field? If you're just trying to get out there and get some experience I'd go for the big hospital
  4. 0
    I don't know what I am going to do at the moment. The biggest problem with the big hospital is the distance and they are also making new nurses sign an 18 month contract to work. I don't know if I am going to stay in the area or if I am even going to like the hospital. I have heard good things about the hospital but I have also heard some bad things as well. The floor I was hired on is the indigent floor and my advisor felt my personality was right for the floor because I have "tough" skin and am able to deal with pts who might not be as appreciative to be in the hospital. I would love the chance to work with such patients and the experience is something I would love, but working night shift having to drive an hour home on an empty stretch of road is not something I want to risk at the moment not to mention gas prices are ridiculously high. When I first applied for the job, I did so in hopes of relocating but my son just got accepted into a hard to get into pre-k and my boyfriend just got settled into a job where we live now. With this economy I can't afford to move and risk my boyfriend not being able to find a good job quickly in the new area or not being able to find a FREE pre-K for my son. My hope is to do my year in the ICU and possibly relocate sometime next year to another big hospital I was looking at.
  5. 0
    Both large and small hospitals have strengths and advantages -- they're just different strengths and advantages.

    I started my career in a small, rural hospital (long, long ago, in a galaxy far, far away ), and it was a great experience. I got to know nearly everyone at the hospital, there really was a "family" feel to the place (among the staff, I mean), and I was given a much wider range of responsibilities and experiences than I would have been in a larger hospital (where I, as a new grad, would have been "kept on a much shorter leash" ) -- granted, with plenty of support and back-up.

    Considering, as you mention, the cost of gasoline (who knows how high it's going to go??) and the additional travel time, I would encourage you to give the smaller, closer hospital a chance -- you might even like it enough to end up wanting to stay there long-term. In healthcare as in everything else, bigger is not necessarily better.
  6. 0
    I just graduated with my ASN in May 2010 and have worked in both a large and small hospital, and this is what I took away from my experiences:

    Large hospital - Saw lots of exciting stuff that I knew I would not see in the small hospitals - seriously ill patients, open heart surgeries, etc. There were lots of aides to help out and the technology was very up and coming. The downside of this was I couldn't start an IV because the IV team did all of them, didn't draw an ABG or give a respiratory treatment, or even titrate my patient's oxygen, because respiratory therapy did that. Then there was a very large staff of doctors to get to know. To me, it was quite overwhelming and I didn't feel I had full control of my patients' situations.

    Small hospital - Do my own IVs, I'm the aide, I'm the respiratory person, do my own EKGs, mix drugs; you name it, I do it. I feel my nursing skills are much more diverse. The handful of doctors know me by name and I them. Relationships can be built because I am working with the same small group of colleagues. The downside? I haven't found any yet.

    Just some food for thought...
  7. 0
    What about the benefits and pay??? Should those be considered??? Of course the bigger hospital is offering more benefits and the pay is about the same.