Is ICU experience a requirment for PACU?

  1. Hi!

    I started out in my chosen specialty in pediatric med/surg (rather high acuity for peds, very sick kids, some 2 to 1 patients, stepdown patients as well). I'm very interested in switching over to a PACU position in a Women and Infants department at another facility (I am moving due to family issues). I will have 2 years RN exp. as of Feb.

    Is ICU experience ALWAYS a requirement? The recruiter says ICU would be a requirement before entering the PACU, but I have seen other nurses go stright form my floor to units with more sedation as well as to PACU positions. Any advice would be appreciated!
    Last edit by NessaNurse on Nov 16, '06
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  2. 9 Comments

  3. by   augigi
    Depends on the unit. You'd have to contact the employer and ask.
  4. by   Dinith88
    Quote from NessaNurse
    Hi!

    I started out in my chosen specialty in pediatric med/surg (rather high acuity for peds, very sick kids, some 2 to 1 patients, stepdown patients as well). I'm very interested in switching over to a PACU position in a Women and Infants department at another facility (I am moving due to family issues). I will have 2 years RN exp. as of Feb.

    Is ICU experience ALWAYS a requirement? The recruiter says ICU would be a requirement before entering the PACU, but I have seen other nurses go stright form my floor to units with more sedation as well as to PACU positions. Any advice would be appreciated!
    It's usually NOT a requirement, though It'd certainly help.
  5. by   piper_for_hire
    It depends on the PACU. Our PACU takes ICU and TICU holds, so they want ICU nurses. Just call and find out.

    -S
  6. by   Nursonegreat
    i went from med surge to a GYN PACU. no icu here. they sent me to heart classes, then i moved out of state and into a full PACU (all cases including ICU cases and ICU holds. i was sent to heart refresher and critical care classes that new ICU RNs go to. i eventually went on to become charge RN in the PACU. so no, not required in my hospitals i worked in...everyone is different. and does not make u the greatest PACU RN ever if u did (we got an ICU RN to the PACU and she was a sheer nightmare). altho if i woulda had ICU experience it would have given me some exposure to things before i saw them. but like anything in nursing U CAN LEARN IT just like everyone else. no one was born knowing how to set up a vent, suction a trach, reverse SVT, etc. so GL!!
  7. by   ceecel.dee
    It's a good idea, but depending on your experience and the institution, it may not be required.
  8. by   AfloydRN
    Where I work, not required. Basically they want OR experience for PACU and ER/ ICU experience for everything else.
  9. by   Mayotski
    I was crosstrained in our SICU for four and a half months before my former supervisor actually assigned me in the PACU (PACU and SICU in our hospital are actually one area but we in the PACU only cater to patients who don't require overnight stay or ICU admission).
  10. by   RN34TX
    Quote from AfloydRN
    Where I work, not required. Basically they want OR experience for PACU and ER/ ICU experience for everything else.
    Your hospital's policy sounds very odd and inappropriate to me as PACU nursing is much more in line with ICU nursing, not OR.
    PACU and OR nursing are practically night and day by comparison so I fail to see the need or desire for OR experience to work in PACU.

    Of course I've never been an OR nurse so perhaps I'm talking out of turn, but my perception of it is that OR is a completely different skill set and ICU and PACU go much more hand in hand.
  11. by   cowpoke_rn
    I've been working in Pacu for 8 months now and love it and have learned a lot. Previously I worked on a general surgery/tele floor for about 2 years. ICU experience was not required for me to make the transfer but I was responsible for learning vents, drips, ect. for PACU. ACLS was a requirement also. I was actually about to transfer to ICU because I had a desire to learn new things but the PACU job came available at the last minute so I grabbed it (and I'm very glad I did because I love it)

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