What can you do AFTER being an OR nurse?

  1. 0
    Ill start off with im a new nurse.

    Ive never really planned on going into OR nursing before because of how difficult it is to get a position in. But recently was told about a potential opportunity to go into the OR which is always something that I was very interested in. (I actually have previous surgical experience, and they told me they were interested in me so I think my chances are quite good)

    One of my concerns though, was I dont exactly have the best genetics and dont see myself as being physically capable of handling a physically demanding nursing job for more than maybe 10 years if im lucky.


    One of my original plans was to do the normal bedside thing as long as I could physically handle it, and once my body can no longer keep up, transition towards administrative duties/management/nurse manager etc then take it from there.

    But if I end up spending most of my career as an OR nurse, im not really sure where I could go from there. Any more knowledgeable minds able to help ?

    Also I havent gone back for my MSN but I plan to, although im not certain in what area
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  3. 8 Comments so far...

  4. 0
    I've worked with nurses who have transferred to ER, ICU, med-surg, and other areas who have excelled in their new position. If it's something you want to do and you can find a position, many nurses have no issues learning new skills. I am currently in an MSN program for education. I could become a clinical instructor, classroom instructor, or work in staff development. How well I would succeed in any of those positions is on me and my abilities.
  5. 0
    Quote from Sweet_Wild_Rose
    I've worked with nurses who have transferred to ER, ICU, med-surg, and other areas who have excelled in their new position. If it's something you want to do and you can find a position, many nurses have no issues learning new skills. I am currently in an MSN program for education. I could become a clinical instructor, classroom instructor, or work in staff development. How well I would succeed in any of those positions is on me and my abilities.
    Well I like the idea of being in the OR, im honestly VERY interested in doing it. And wouldnt want to go into the OR just to transfer out (I have the option to do normal bedside nursing instead). Especially because I think id find it much more difficult to enjoy bedside nursing after doing the OR for a few years.

    I just dont want to put myself into a position where the OR thing becomes difficult/painful for me, and then find myself with very limited opportunities available.

    Education is something that im certainly interested in down the road, but id imagine that being more supplemental rather than full time.

    Is it viable to eventually go from having only (or the overwhelming majority) OR nursing as your primarily skill based nursing experience (whether its for 5, 10, 15 years) to being involved with more of the quality/admin type stuff such as HCAP scores best practice indicators etc?

    Because ideally in my mind id love to do OR for a good 10 years, then something not physically demanding and eventually some education aspects.
  6. 0
    I assume you're asking about post OR careers that are less demanding physically? In our facility we have many nurse clinicians and educators. A few of our product reps are recovering OR nurses also

    OR nursing is so specialized, but don't know if it would limit future options. You may be able to transition to legal nurse consulting, or IT, or maybe UR/QA. I think you would have quite a few options, especially if you continue your education.
  7. 0
    Triage nursing appears to be a cake job. Maybe even case management for an insurance company (desk job.)
  8. 0
    Quote from NYRNOR
    I assume you're asking about post OR careers that are less demanding physically? In our facility we have many nurse clinicians and educators. A few of our product reps are recovering OR nurses also

    OR nursing is so specialized, but don't know if it would limit future options. You may be able to transition to legal nurse consulting, or IT, or maybe UR/QA. I think you would have quite a few options, especially if you continue your education.

    Yep precisely.

    It was the specialization that made me think options would be somewhat limited
  9. 0
    Quote from wirehead
    Triage nursing appears to be a cake job. Maybe even case management for an insurance company (desk job.)
    Case management and utilization review definitely seemed like reasonable transition jobs (to break me into the world of management/admin) I just dont know if they would want an OR nurse. I feel like those jobs are usually want people with a ton of medsurge experience.

    Triage is interesting, but from the people ive talked to they prefer er and cardiac experience (as thats usually where they work)
  10. 0
    Don't rule out industry. All medical device companies have RN's on staff for their clinical expertise. After 30 years of nursing, 23 in the OR, I went to a surgical device company as a clinical resource. It is a great job, I travel, lots, and get to expand my network of colleagues beyond anything I would have imagined.
  11. 0
    I've seen people become sales reps and met one nurse who did pre-op interviews over the phone after her knees became too painful to stay in the OR.


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