What's the best way to become an OR nurse?

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    I graduated from nursing school in December 2013 and would love to become an operating room nurse. I've applied to such positions, but employers want RNs with OR experience, and my three days in the OR in nursing school doesn't suffice. I've heard of surgical techs going to nursing school and then getting RN jobs in the OR but never the opposite. As an RN already, should I become a surgical tech to get the experience necessary to become an OR nurse? There's also a perioperative consortium for RNs in my area that runs for a week three times a year. Is that worth taking instead of becoming a surgical tech to get a job in the OR? Any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated! Thank you!
    Last edit by phe677239 on Jun 18
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  3. 2 Comments so far...

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    Yes, the preoperative consortium would be better for you. Getting an ST certificate/degree is not necessary for you. I worked as a CST for 12 years and now I am an RN pursuing an RNFA. Once you are able to get into the OR suite, most hospitals will train you OTJ to scrub cases. I think that the difficulty you are running into is that the OR is so specialized and it takes someone that has been in this area for awhile to be able to perform a multitude of tasks and roles. Most Operating Room nurses are expected to be able to scrub as well as circulate. If you have one under your belt it is then easier for them to see the potential in just training you for the other. However, it is not unheard of for new grads to get OR jobs, so I would just keep applying. Just make sure that when you are applying to the hospitals that you are ONLY applying for OR positions and not anything else. This will show that you are serious about that specific position and are not interested in any other areas. You can also try to find out the OR managers name and email address and directly send a cover letter and resume to them asking that they take the time to review your nursing school experience and maybe take a chance with you. Just be persistent.
    phe677239 likes this.
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    Thank you so much for the advice! I'll have to follow up and let you know how it works out.


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