What is expected of students on the orthopedic floor?

  1. 0
    I have clinicals starting tomorrow on an orthopedic floor. We will be there from 9 am to 7pm. I am quite nervous because I've never been on an orthopedic floor and worried if I will make a mistake about moving a patient in the wrong position. What is expected during the whole day shift on that floor?
  2. 6 Comments so far...

  3. 0
    I would not be worried too much. As a student you are there to learn. Since it is your first time on an orthopedic floor just tell the nurse you are assigned it is your first time and tell him/her you are worried about making a mistake. You should not be responsible for doing too much, anyway. Maybe assist with the bathing/changing but certainly do not do it alone or with another student. Have someone licensed with you. Be it the CNA or nurse. Good luck! (:
  4. 0
    My first clinical rotation in nursing school was also on an orthopedic floor. Unfortunately, what was expected of me was to stay out of the way. None of them wanted us there and it was obvious. I just offered to take vitals and let it be known that I would help with whatever I could. I helped move and bathe a couple patients, but that was it. Worst clinical ever. I sincerely hope yours is better.
  5. 1
    Don't be afraid of the ortho floor - just keep good body mechanics in mind when moving a patient - both your body mechanics and the patient's. You can't just yank a person that's just had back surgery out of bed, but if their orders say they can be oob, then get someone to help you and move efficiently and purposefully, but take your time. If a patient is in traction then you will have to help or get help in maintaining their traction while they get washed up or use the bed pan or what ever is going on. Reread your orhto chapter in your textbook to remind yourself of what will be going on while on that floor and if you're unsure of something, ask or get help.
    ipaharpoon likes this.
  6. 0
    Quote from Quit Floating Me
    I would not be worried too much. As a student you are there to learn. Since it is your first time on an orthopedic floor just tell the nurse you are assigned it is your first time and tell him/her you are worried about making a mistake. You should not be responsible for doing too much, anyway. Maybe assist with the bathing/changing but certainly do not do it alone or with another student. Have someone licensed with you. Be it the CNA or nurse. Good luck! (:
    A CNA is certified not licensed. I see that posted a lot here-that they are licensed. They're not.
  7. 1
    Ortho floor is really not vastly different than med-surg. You'll still give baths, pass meds, VS, etc. Be especially aware of pt's body positioning, level of activity ordered, & pain control. Be sure you know whether a pt is a 1-2 assist, standby, or bedrest. I wouldn't get up any pt without staff present the first time, unless in report you are told that they are a standby or do very well with just one person. Don't forget that gait belt & walker! Don't try to put a knee pt on their CPM without staff help.

    Encourage pts to turn! Many will get comfortable in one position & don't want to move. Get them up out of bed & into a chair for an hour or two if possible, usually meal times are good. Don't forget the IS & deep breathing. Our floor does PT twice daily, so factor in those times the pt is out so you can get everything done.

    My floor has many elective surgeries, hip/knee replacements, so many of the pts are pretty "healthy" & stable for the most part. You still have hypertension, diabetes, hypothyroidism, etc. for a lot of pts. Post-op blood transfusions are common, but as a student, you will just observe that process. On my floor, students are allowed to do the daily dressing changes & d/c any autotransfusers the first post-op morning. You may get to d/c a foley or insert one. Be aware of complications, just like any surgery - lately my floor has had a couple PEs & MIs postop. I had one gentleman who had an MI on his 3rd POD & was transferred out & then another lady who had a PE & died a few hours before discharge.

    If you're not sure ask about something, ask! Good Luck & hope you had a great day!
    ipaharpoon likes this.
  8. 0
    Not much different from typical postop. Be mindful of positioning, restrictions, activity level, DVT prohylaxis, IS/DB, I+Os and pain control.


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