Just started Periop program and not sure it's for me

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    Hi! I am a new graduate and just accepted a Periop nursing job that involves a contract after completion of the program. I have been involved for a few weeks and get the feeling that it is not for me, even though I originally thought it was. I have been thinking I want to quit and pay the money back. Does anyone have advice for me? I am afraid this will hurt me when trying to find another job.
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  3. 8 Comments so far...

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    Interested in reading the pending feedback because I'm soon to start a periop training course very soon @ a Hospital. I'm also required to sign a contract.
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    That is a tricky question. What are your concerns? Are you feeling intimidated, or just unhappy while at work? I have found that I love to work in certain services and dislike others. Give us a little more info and I am sure you can get some useful advice


    Quote from Lovenursing89
    Hi! I am a new graduate and just accepted a Periop nursing job that involves a contract after completion of the program. I have been involved for a few weeks and get the feeling that it is not for me, even though I originally thought it was. I have been thinking I want to quit and pay the money back. Does anyone have advice for me? I am afraid this will hurt me when trying to find another job.
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    I fear that I will lose nursing skills because this is the circulator role. I'm afraid that will hurt me later on if I wanted to do something different. I have talked with some circulators since starting the program and they have described it as being a glorified gofer. I am mainly concerned that there's a possibility I won't like it and will be stuck with this position for 2 years because there is a contract.

    I've always heard its great to get nursing experience on the floor or in a unit and I'm afraid I'm missing out on that.
  7. 0
    Quote from Lovenursing89
    I fear that I will lose nursing skills because this is the circulator role. I'm afraid that will hurt me later on if I wanted to do something different. I have talked with some circulators since starting the program and they have described it as being a glorified gofer. I am mainly concerned that there's a possibility I won't like it and will be stuck with this position for 2 years because there is a contract.

    I've always heard its great to get nursing experience on the floor or in a unit and I'm afraid I'm missing out on that.
    It's too bad that no one told you that OR nursing is a distinct specialty aside from other nursing specialties. I remember when I was in nursing school, my professors persuaded us all not to go into OR nursing. They felt they poured so much knowledge and training into us and that we would end us wasting it in the OR field. My program didn't even offer an OR rotation...that's how bad they didn't want us in that field.

    I know the feeling of thinking you want to do something and only to find out, it's not what you anticipated. When I was in nursing school, I always wanted to be a trauma nurse in a Level 1 ER. After I worked med-surg for a year, I transferred to our ER, which was the only Level 1 in our region. In the middle of the ER internship, I hated every aspect of being an ER nurse and I was completely overwhelmed at the time. I wasn't under contract for the internship so I was able to transfer back to my med-surg unit. I felt like a failure since I returned back to my floor but I hated doing the job of an ER nurse.

    As I got more experience, I then went to the OR in preparation for CRNA school. I knew I always wanted to do CRNA school but wasn't in a hurry to apply so I hung out in the OR. I loved the OR and love the various specialties and working as a team member. But after doing that job for 10 years, I felt like there was more to nursing than this. I got tired of working with surgeons who had strong personalities (military and civilian) and I felt like I wasn't using my nursing skills. I felt like a gloriphied gopher as I ran around all day looking for supplies and instruments. I felt like the OR techs got more respect than the OR nurses. At my civilian job, we also have many RNs that function in the scrub nurse role in addition to the circulating role.

    We have one surgeon at my civilian job where we have to flip coins amongst the nurses to decide who will circulate his case. This guy is an orthopedic surgeon and he is really weird. He has a phobia of the automatic blinds in the OR, so we have to have them all the way down before he comes into the OR. If he sees them actually going down, he will freak out. You can't wear cologne or perfume since he has allergies. We have had many travelers and new nurses replaced from his room because of his complaint. He has to listen to the Dianne Reams radio cast on WAMU at certain times of the morning. When he gets frustrated, he takes it out on everyone. I'm glad I am only PRN and only have to work 24 hours in a 6 week period. My specialty is neuro and ortho but I would do neuro any day of the week.

    Don't get me wrong, the money is very good in the OR since this specialty has a hard time retaining nurses due to surgeon's verbal and sometimes physical abuse. I love it on most days since i have great co-workers and then there are some days I really don't look forward to coming in.

    Since you are under contract, see if you could work out a deal to see if you could transfer to another floor within the hospital so the hospital won't lose a good employee. The OR isn't for everybody. I tend to think men have it a little better than females when working with the surgeons. I have seem some surgeon rip some female nurses up in the OR but wouldn't dare do the same thing to a male nurse in the OR.

    Not to go off on a tangent, but we had an incident where a surgeon was ****** during a case and he was mad because the circulating nurse had to keep leaving the room to get supplies. When he asked for something, it wasn't there and he threw a bloody instrument at her and it hit her in the face. When the case was over, the nurse called the police and told them what happened. The police came and the surgeon was arrested for assault and battery. Later that week, the hospital fired the OR nurse because the surgeon was a big money maker for the hospital as he brought in tons of clients. I thought that was wrong since no one had her back.

    At least with me going to CRNA school, I will be on the different side of the coin within the OR.

    I wish you luck regarding your choice for the OR program. If you want to keep your skills, I would say you should go to the bedside. OR is a completely different beast.
  8. 0
    How much money would you have to pay back if you were to break the contract?
  9. 1
    I don't regret getting experience on the floor, but it sure would have saved me a lot of grief and misery to just go straight to OR.

    I don't know that I would worry too much about getting a job on the floor after doing the OR. Floor jobs are a dime a dozen, coming open all the time...I waited 2 years for an OR job to come open in my hospital system. You may not be able to do another specialty like ICU from OR, but I would be shocked if getting a floor job would be difficult.

    And trust me when I say you can get stuck in a job you hate for 2 years even without a contract. Trust me

    Have you actually been working in the ORs? Do you like it?
    Anniehow likes this.
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    I was told during my O.R. internship to go to the floor first and I'm very glad that I did. It helped me solidify my nursing and interpersonal skills, as well as learn a lot of anatomy, medications, etc.

    However, in your situation, it does become more complicated. How much money would you have to pay back? In the end you need to do what is best for YOU and what will make YOU happy. However, you want to be careful of burning bridges and not being able to go back to that hospital later. Is it a large hospital/hospital system or a small independent place?

    Also, the transition into the O.R. is sometimes very difficult. I went straight into hearts and had a lot of miserable days and times where I dreaded going into work. In the end the O.R. can be an awesome place.
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    I'm an OR nurse of three years. I started off as a surg tech but wanted to experience both worlds. I will be moving soon and wonder if going to a med/surg floor for a year or two would be beneficial? Don't get me wrong I love circulating but moving due to spouse being active duty military I wonder what's best ?


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