Were u required to have experience before doing OBGYN nursing? - page 2

I recently found out that my hospital requires at least 1 year of medsurg experience to enter OBGYN program. Do u feel it makes a difference?... Read More

  1. by   Wackyswirly
    I've been working in Ob/Gyn for a little over a year, and it was my first nursing job. There are definitely times when I wish I had the Med/Surg experience. There's a great nurse on my floor with lots of M/S experience, and she was a great help to me when I had a complicated gyn pt. But she had patients, too.

    If Ob/Gyn is what you really want to do, it might be worth just biting the bullet and getting that year out of the way. Based on my experience and other replies to your question, I doubt you'll ever regret it (although you might be glad when it's over!)
  2. by   HazeK
    You will have a better experience w/ your L&D orientation if you have one year's experience on postpartum or med/surg or ICU.

    I've been preceptoring L&D "newbies" for 20 years...
    I promise I am telling the truth!

    Haze
  3. by   trogdor
    I worked for 1.5 yrs on a med surg floor before I went into OB(I always knew I wanted to do OB eventually). I think that it has provided me a great foundation for caring for my pts. The nurses that I work with in OB now often look to me for advice when we get complicated pts. For example one night I was the only nurse that felt comfortable enough to care for a pt with a DVT and a heparin gtt. Do med/ surg first, then you can do anything. It makes you more marketable. -good luck!!
  4. by   mother/babyRN
    I was not required to have prior experience, but my previous experience in both Med Surg AND critical care was and has been enormously helpful in my time on maternity...it is a GREAT idea to have some experience before going and I think it should be required, however, with staffing the way it is these days, I can see that requirement relaxed and even ignored...Unfortunately, these days, with the floating and sicker patients, I think it is sad that people with experience ONLY with OB don't have the important background one could and should have...That said, even with the idea that OB is to be one's only nursing experience, I do think it is of course possible to eventually learn the ropes, as long as one keeps in mind that just because a patient has come in to have a baby, doesn't eliminate her and the baby from all the things that can happen to everyone else....
    I am happy with ALL the people coming to help me out.....Just might take a little longer if one doesn't have med surg or some other back ground....All I know is that it was GREAT for me to have had that background.....
  5. by   mother/babyRN
    We recently got a patient with a pulmonary embolus...The nurses were against us receiving the patient and tried to force her to go to ICU..They thought it was inappropriate for her to be on maternity, but her numbers were stable, and we were equipped to monitor the baby as well as her...Because I had experience with that, as well as the associated meds and symptoms, I volunteered to take her..Aside from shortness of breath she wasn't unstable...Her arrival was met with great resistance by the maternity staff......THAT is sad.....So, it is helpful to have the experience, especially since delivery people just don't realize that they are every bit of critical care nurses as those in ICU....
  6. by   PegRNBSN
    I had three years of Med/Surg before transferring to L&D. Although I would never go back, I believe learning to assess really sick patients is invaluable. We have had both types of nurses on our units and those with Med/surg experience generally do very well. Those without often do well with the L&D part but when we get sick patients they struggle. I find those of us with M/s experience are utilized for those patients, but sometimes there are none of us on- then what?
    I would get a year's experience, just personal preference
  7. by   mother/babyRN
    With all due respect to those of you wonderful l and d nurses who did not have med surg or other experience before entering delivery, you have no frame of reference with which to compare...ANY experience you bring to another genre is valuable, and for those of you who don't think so, you are quite mistaken..No one here says anyone entering the field without experience other than OB isn't competent or even excellent, however, to think that Med Surg doesn't enhance or wouldn't have enhanced your time in delivery is just plain wrong.....
    I am glad all of those who feel that way made a great and correct career choice, but unless you have other experience, you really cannot accurately assess otherwise....
  8. by   fergus51
    Motherbaby, the opposite is also true. You don't know what it was like to go straight into L&D, or how different hospitals affect that decision. I know a good number of nurses who left nursing after their time on med-surg. The hospital I started in was a high risk HUGE place, and that gave me the benefit of getting all that med-surg experience (assessments, moms with other conditions, etc.), but on pregnant women which is what I wanted to do. I don't regret not taking a job I hated for a year in med-surg, and don't think that would have made me a good nurse. It would've made me a cranky nurse Some people will benefit from time on a med-surg units. Some won't, we're all different.

    I have also oriented a good number of new staff and have just as much trouble with the med-surg nurses as the new grads. Their background can be helpful with meds and the like, but after a few years their medical skills are out of date anyways. I had a nurse ask me what DIE- GO- ZIN was once (digoxin) her med-surg knowledge was a touch outdated, though she did do it as a new grad in the 70s.
  9. by   BETSRN
    I vote for med-surg background BEFORE entering ANY specialty. I had to have it. I work with several nurses who came to us right out of school. While they are very good and skillful nurses NOW, their perception of nursing is far more idealistic than those of us who have worked other specialties.

    I think the med-sueg experience I got before entering L&D was invaluable to me.
  10. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Bets you forget one thing.

    MED-SURG nursing IS a speciality!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Let us not ever forget that.

    I don't find--- NECESSARILY --- med-surg nurses bring much more to OB than nurses out of school sometimes. Sometimes, they just don't get it or don't like it......some never catch on. OTHERS are amazing.

    Yes, the experience of being a NURSE is very helpful but med-surge is a speciality area itself and not necessarily a logical first step to OB. It was certainly NOT the path I took and I did just fine.

    It depends on personality and how quickly people catch on....

    it's either "your bag" or not.
  11. by   acuteobrn
    I came into L/D as a new grad. And I think that even though I didn't do that "coveted" first year of Med/Surg, I think that I am doing ok. I have had pts who required non-ob meds such as insulin, Apresolin and albuterol. Have run an insulin drip. And I have been doing this since May. Yes I am nervous about some of the pts I handle, but wouldn't I be the same way if I was handling these pts on a med/surg unit. The more you do it the more comfortable you become with your knowledge of it, no matter where you first learn to do it.
    One of the reasons I love OB so much is the low pt to RN ratio, not because I can't handle a team of pts I have and can, did it in nursing management during school. I just like more intimate nursing, that ICU, OB and ER can provide. I like the surgical aspect, I like the challenge of having the "invisible" pt. I like having to interpret strips. I plan to continue my education in perinatal nursing and the most logical step for me is to start in L/D.
    I think alot of it has to do with personality and knowing your strengths and weaknesses. When to speak up and ask for help and when to start taking responsiblity by yourself and cut that "umbilical cord." We all graduate with the same basic information and we are all different paced learning individuals. Like one of the posters mentioned above I would have done Med-surg and would have been one cranky nurse. Yes I tend to be idealistic, but that comes from being a new nurse and someone who has a strong sense of what is right and wrong and is willing to stand up and make changes to better patient care. I am just at the begining, but I plan to go far.
    I used to work in a unit where we had a few seasoned nurses from different backgrounds come to L/D, from ER, ICU, Continuing care and med/surg...a few did just great, they were increadable, but there were also some that didn't cut it, surprisingly to me the one from ER didn't make it, ended up quiting and going back to ER.

    So I think this is a good example of there are some who need the background in "general" nursing, and others with years of it who don't get it.

    L/D is not for everybody.

    Just as Med-surg is not for everybody.
  12. by   mother/babyRN
    Fergus, with all due respect to your experience and opinions, I just plain think you are incorrect.....I did pedi, med surg, cardiac care, diabetic teaching, home health and chronic rehab pedi before I ever tried OB...I am SO not saying those of you who didn't do that aren't as talented, knowlegable (so can't spell after 3 horrible night shifts) BUT I AM telling you that in this matter, anyone with prior experience or experience in other areas is MUCH better served for OB.....I certainly think we all learn by osmosis and experience and the more the better. Simple fact.....
  13. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Good thing is:

    there is ROOM FOR ALL OF US!!!

    Have a good day everyone!

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