I don't think bedside nursing is for me. I have been working for almost 2 months now on a med/oncology unit and I didn't really think this was my niche but I couldn't find a place that hire new grad RN/BSN for an Occ health nurse position. Any ideas, please???
Dec 1, '06
Get on the internet and find a local Occ Health organization. They will have all the local scoop on positions available. It is a very word of mouth industry, you almost have to know one to become one. Quietly persistent is the way to get in, good luck.
Apr 10, '07
Go to every industry that has more than 100 employeess. Find out who is their Occ Health Nurse, talk to that person. Many times there are companies who have (as mine does) many nurses and we service many companies. I'm a temp, but permanent at where I work. Lousy bennies though. But I'm close to having finished the 4000 hours to sit for the COHN-S.
Alternatives: Look for one day a week occ health. But it will take you 5 years to be able to sit for the COHN.
This is a quandary. I originally intended to be an Infection Control Nurse, but could never get anyone to even let me work as a volunteer, even though I was an Adult ICU Nurse, eventually I gave it up, and fell into Occ Health, I love it.
Also put where you live... someone might see, and contact you.... USA is mighty big.
Jul 6, '07
I have always wanted to be an OHN. I was just talking to someone who works in OH clinic and she does not have any OH background. Maybe there's a hope.
Jul 22, '07
You have to wait until the current Occupational Health Nurse either dies or retires. Just kidding. I started out working as an emergency room nurse. It give you experience in first aid, CPR, and occupational injuries. Then I attended continuing ed courses in OSHA, occupational safety, and worker's comp. I joined AAOHN and reviewed their info, courses and networked. I joined a temp service who supplied occ health nurses on a prn basis. I was finally able to get hired as an OHN in a large unionized facility who had a large nursing staff and ran 3 shifts of nurses. I sat for my COHN and since then I have a whole bowl of alphabet soup after my name. The one thing that employers are looking for is experience...they do not have the time or expertise to train you and in most cases their OHN is the only one in the company. Since the OHN is a cost center and not a revenue producer, they are not willing to spend a lot of money on training. Most of the OHNs that I have met started out in the ER and then transitioned to OHN. There are a few college programs with specialties in Occupational and Environmental Health (University of North Carolina, University of Michigan). Just keep on trying and one day when I die or retire, you may be one of the vultures kicking my body out of the way to take my job. By the way, I love it and you will be waiting for a long time.
Jan 18, '08
How large of a company should one look for when seeking th OHN position? Is there a criteria or how does the job hunt begin?
Jan 18, '08
Generally the larger the company the better the chance that they have an Occ Health RN. You should contact the AAOHN chapter closes to you, they are sometimes contacted to put the word on the street for a position. Or you could call a large company, asked for health services or medical, and then explain your request to them. If they don't have an opening or a temp position, they may steer you in a direction that will be of assistance.
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