I'm interested in working oncology. I'd like some info about the times oncology nurses work. My guess is that most patient will choose to receive their therapy during the day. When do most oncology nurses do their shifts, day or night? Thanks
What kind of setting were you looking to work in? In the inpatient hospital setting, there are the obvious shifts; AMs, PMs, and NOCs. In the clinic where patients get outpatient chemotherapy, you usually only work until 430 or 5p when the clinic closes. Otherwise, patients in the hospital will get chemo orders during the AM shift, and by the time the chemo is ready, the PM shift usually gives it. Also, oncology patient's on the oncology unit aren't always just there for chemo-it's usually pain control, neutropenic patients and fevers, or a variety of complications that can occur because of chemotherapy. Sometimes the patient has a cancer history from 20 years ago with no complications, but because they have a cancer history they end up on our floor, even if their diagnosis really belongs on another unit.
When I applied for my unit, there were openings for all shifts. Day shifts usually are given to those candidates who have more experience. Usually you won't get put on the night shift unless you ask for it. I was hired for PM shift, but I also mentioned that I would love to work the day shift, and my manager is going to try to get me on days in the next few months. I really hate (or I guess, strongly dislike) the pm shift, but I know it won't be forever