Brand New RN starting in OR

  1. 1
    Hello,

    I graduated from a BSN program in May '13 and just recently passed my NCLEX-RN a month ago! Very exciting summer for me!
    With all this going on for me, in July, I interviewed for an OR position at the hospital Where i did all my clinical training during school (which is also a level I trauma center) and luckily i was offered the position and am starting in Oct!

    I am feeling very blessed and excited, all through nursing school, I just wanted to be in surgical nursing, it was the only area that truly stuck out to me as what I would want to do with my career yet unfortunately we were not exposed to mch of it which is why I still have no clue what to expect with my start date only a few weeks away! Will it be difficult having zero prior experience to starting as a 'brand new' RN in this specialty? Any tips and suggestions I should be aware of? I was told my orientation period is about 22 weeks how long was yours?
    also during orientation time I am required by my facility to take periop 101, How many days/weeks does this course typically last is it mostly on your own or hands on stuff at work?
    Finally what is your typical schedule as an OR nurse as in days/week hourly shifts? when I was hired they told me I would be days/evenings weekend rotation but did not specify if that is 8,10,12 hours?

    Thanks for all the help
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  3. 11 Comments so far...

  4. 0
    Hi ej1104! Our stories are extremely similar. I graduated in May 2012 and passed the NCLEX-RN in June 2012. I have been working as a RN on a Pediatric Acute Care floor at my local Children's Hospital for the past year. I interviewed for a OR Nurse position last week and was offered the job today! I am ecstatic!
    I, too, have always been intrigued by the surgical process. Throughout nursing school, I had very few opportunities to observe in the OR. When I had the chance, I was too mesmerized by the procedures to actually take note of the RNs duties and responsibilities. I got a better sense of the OR RNs role when I went to shadow for a day 2 weeks ago. Still, I am somewhat clueless as to what should be expected.
    I was told that our orientation period is 6 months. During this time, I will learn both roles of the Circulating Nurse and Scrub Nurse, all while rotating surgical services (Ortho, Neuro, ENT, Plastics, General, etc.)
    I am also required to take Peri-Op 101. I know nothing about this process except that we must pass the course before we can be declared off of orientation.
    As for hours, I was hired for the Monday - Friday (0645 -1515) shift with 1 weekend on-call per month. Other shifts are offered but are obtainable based on seniority. Honestly, I have no problem with rarely working weekends/holidays!
    It is comforting to know that someone else will be going through the same experience that I will be. Perhaps we could rely on each other throughout the orientation process! I can't wait to get started!
    I wish you all the very best with everything!
  5. 0
    Quote from YouSmellLikeCDiff
    Hi ej1104! Our stories are extremely similar. I graduated in May 2012 and passed the NCLEX-RN in June 2012. I have been working as a RN on a Pediatric Acute Care floor at my local Children's Hospital for the past year. I interviewed for a OR Nurse position last week and was offered the job today! I am ecstatic!
    I, too, have always been intrigued by the surgical process. Throughout nursing school, I had very few opportunities to observe in the OR. When I had the chance, I was too mesmerized by the procedures to actually take note of the RNs duties and responsibilities. I got a better sense of the OR RNs role when I went to shadow for a day 2 weeks ago. Still, I am somewhat clueless as to what should be expected.
    I was told that our orientation period is 6 months. During this time, I will learn both roles of the Circulating Nurse and Scrub Nurse, all while rotating surgical services (Ortho, Neuro, ENT, Plastics, General, etc.)
    I am also required to take Peri-Op 101. I know nothing about this process except that we must pass the course before we can be declared off of orientation.
    As for hours, I was hired for the Monday - Friday (0645 -1515) shift with 1 weekend on-call per month. Other shifts are offered but are obtainable based on seniority. Honestly, I have no problem with rarely working weekends/holidays!
    It is comforting to know that someone else will be going through the same experience that I will be. Perhaps we could rely on each other throughout the orientation process! I can't wait to get started!
    I wish you all the very best with everything!
    Thank you for your response and Congrats on the job offer as well! when will you start in the OR? I begin 2nd week in October,

    you are absolutely right it is comforting to know there is someone else out there is a very similar situation ! Like u, i also will rotate through the various specialties (cardiac,thoracic,peds,trauma,OB, general) in the 6 month orientation and then if there is a spot open in one of my choice, i can be placed there which is great.
    As you mentioned also regarding ur hours are M-F 7-3. I am about 95% positive that is the shift I will be on and with on-call weekend rotation after the 6 months is up
    I interviewed way back in July and with nclex going on between that, It slipped my mind haha, I will just need that clarified closer to starting with HR.

    Thanks for all the help again Hope to keep in touch with how the new job experience turns out! Good luck
  6. 0
    I start October 7th! I can't believe it's only a few weeks away!

    I will check back often to see how things are going. We can do this! Eeek!
  7. 0
    Hey yousmelllikecdiff I passed on the peds position and just accepted an OR position. In soooo excited!!!!
  8. 0
    We have the same situation! I graduated in August, took boards that month and passed. I just had a second interview with an OR in my area last week, and I was selected this morning for the position of Circulating RN. I am so excited! They want me to start orientation on Monday 09/23/13(rush rush rush!). Congratulations on your job! Hopefully we will make great OR nurses
  9. 0
    Quote from Pierce_RN
    We have the same situation! I graduated in August, took boards that month and passed. I just had a second interview with an OR in my area last week, and I was selected this morning for the position of Circulating RN. I am so excited! They want me to start orientation on Monday 09/23/13(rush rush rush!). Congratulations on your job! Hopefully we will make great OR nurses
    Congrats to you! I just called HR today and got some of my awaited questions answered finally! It is all starting to feel real and im Very excited, good luck to everyone in the OR coming up!
  10. 0
    Congrats on your new positions! I started an OR training program last month and love it so far. I graduated back in 2010 and did mostly clinic nursing since then. Our program is also 6 months, training through all the specialties throughout four different facilities, and we have one 4 week scrub rotation. We were also told to expect Mon-Fri 7-3:30, and then weekend call after the training program ends. However, I've already switched to 4 10 hour shifts in order to match my first preceptor's schedule. I've also learned that each service has very different protocol for their call schedule so some only have 3-7p call while another service only is required to take call 2 weekends a YEAR. I'm sure every facility is different, but it was refreshing to hear about all the options depending on what piques your interest . So far, I'm really digging ortho and vascular!
  11. 0
    Congratulations to both of you..however you might want to read what another nurse using this same sit e had to say about her trying to get a job in another unit with no success. The or will only prepare you for the or and very little nursing goes on, you do more mechanical work than actual nursing. You plug machines in, you move heavy equipment, you position patients on the table, you place ground pads ans scd's on your patient, you document on a computer and you run,jump,sit,lay,etc when your tech tells you to or the doctor. you spend your day facilitating instruments and other things for the tech and the doctor and very little time doing actual nursing. Even the accuchecks are done by anesthesia, apparently in the or nurses are not even capable of checking a blood sugar. You spend your day pluging and unpluging,hawling machinery around as well as or beds,and not much else. Like you both I recently graduated as an RN as was given the opportunity to work in the OR...I hate it, the worse mistake i have evr done, i dont even remember most medications now, you will never again have the opportunity to even come up with a careplan or even think. all you do is follow commands....dont do it!!!
  12. 0
    Quote from ratona
    Congratulations to both of you..however you might want to read what another nurse using this same sit e had to say about her trying to get a job in another unit with no success. The or will only prepare you for the or and very little nursing goes on, you do more mechanical work than actual nursing. You plug machines in, you move heavy equipment, you position patients on the table, you place ground pads ans scd's on your patient, you document on a computer and you run,jump,sit,lay,etc when your tech tells you to or the doctor. you spend your day facilitating instruments and other things for the tech and the doctor and very little time doing actual nursing. Even the accuchecks are done by anesthesia, apparently in the or nurses are not even capable of checking a blood sugar. You spend your day pluging and unpluging,hawling machinery around as well as or beds,and not much else. Like you both I recently graduated as an RN as was given the opportunity to work in the OR...I hate it, the worse mistake i have evr done, i dont even remember most medications now, you will never again have the opportunity to even come up with a careplan or even think. all you do is follow commands....dont do it!!!
    Ratona, reading this post and another post by you, it is quite obvious that you do not like your job as an OR nurse. That may be the specialty or it may be the environment in which you work. However, just because you are not happy in your job doesn't mean you should be discouraging to others seeking OR jobs. I am an OR nurse who loves her job most days (yes, there is the occasional extremely stressful day where I don't love my job) and I feel that yes, I do use nursing skills. No, I don't use every skill I learned in nursing school, but I use some of them and I've learned many more in my career. Some nurses feel OR nurses aren't real nurses. That's sad enough by itself but even more so when that sentiment comes from within our own ranks.


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