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This is a discussion on How can I start with Oncology Nursing? in Oncology Nursing, part of Nursing Specialties ... Hi guys, I would just like some advice. I am currently working as a nurse in a psychiatric...by jenmesh May 1, '12Hi guys, I would just like some advice.
I am currently working as a nurse in a psychiatric facility, and though it's been good, my heart truly lies in Oncology nursing, more on a personal level because it has hit my family on so many levels.. and I would like to delve more into this field to further understand it, and to meet people also affected by it. My question is, how do I get started in this field knowing that I don't really have experience in this field? Should I just go ahead and start applying for this position, or should I take classes about it?
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- May 31, '12 by Topaz7I am wondering the same thing. I also work in psych and I love it! I do want to work a few hours in a medical setting and I think I would love oncology once I get my RN. I'm just not sure with the hospitals being SOOO picky lately about hiring people, what would make your application/resume stand out so you get hired or what do you need to do to get into the field?
- Jun 1, '12 by One2gofstTake my story with a grain of salt, but for me, it was just about applying to units. I graduated in Dec., passed boards first week in Feb. and was looking for jobs the whole time. Often I didn't even get an email that the units applied to declined me for interviews. As just would have it I applied to a lymphoma/leukemia floor and got a surprise call with phone interview on the spot. The interviewer called me in to interview with the nurse manager then a second interview with my recruiter. During this time I had another interview for another unit at the same hospital but much preferred this position. Got the job offer a couple weeks later. So, that's a long winded way of saying just apply, IMO. You have more RN experience than I do, even if it is in psych. Aside from that it can be a crap shoot about getting an interview. Myself I interview well and am very confident and that goes a long way. The hard part was just getting the interview. Best of luck in your job search.
- Jun 6, '12 by ittybittynurseDon't be afraid to jump into it. I did right after college. I love it. Seek for outpatient clinics/dr. Offices where you can grow and focus more on treatment rather than bedside care.
- Jun 6, '12 by OCNRN63I would not recommend working in OP immed. The learning curve is steep for onc., not to mention becoming skilled at starting IVs and accessing ports.I don't see why OP couldn't just apply for inpt. onc. positions. It might just take a while to get a job. Maybe OP should try shadowing a few times on days off to make sure it's what she really wants, not just what she thinks she wants d/t experience with a family member who had CA.
- Jun 7, '12 by Sarah RN,OCNI started in an outpatient oncology facility right out of nursing school in Jan 2011, and I've absolutely loved it. Of course, there is a learning curve, but to be expected, as you're not accessing ports and hanging chemo in nursing school. That being said, you will catch on fast and the chemo regimens, supportive meds, etc. will come with time...you'll be suprised. The company I work for assisted with getting chemo certified and I'm scheduled to sit for my OCN next month. Long story short, keep applying and stay as positive as you can....get those resumes out there! Best of luck :0)
- Jun 10, '12 by chemochickrnI also started on an Oncology Unit right out of nursing school. I got my job by being a bit pesky to the nursing recruiter for the hospital. I called her and asked her about nursing jobs in Oncology. I scored an interview with the unit manager within a week. Now I've also done Oncology nursing on a Med/Surg type floor - it was a small hospital that combined specialties. I would look into the hospitals in your area and see what's available. I would also start researching cancer diagnoses, treatments, etc. It will help show that you are serious when you do get the interview.
By the way, I do think psych nursing will help with oncology nursing. Treating some cancers and recognizing psych side effects from chemo drugs is where psych knowledge comes in handy. Also, you have to deal with MANY different patient and family dynamics in Oncology nursing. Cancer is a hefty diagnosis - everyone deals with it a bit differently.