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i have worked multiple areas in the hospital setting including, pacu, ed, cath lab, interventionalradiology and the open heart recovery units. early last year i took a positionback in the pacu and, i must say, this could be that retirement job we all lookfor. patients range from minor surgery 'locals' to critical care recovery andsupport. i am able to utilize all my critical care skills in a fast paced environmentwith a group of nurse who are both skilled and professional.
makingthe transition from icu to the pacu would not be difficult at all however, aspatients move through the pacu unit relatively quickly, you do not get thechance to really interact with them. your job is stabilization, vital support,pain control and preparation for transfer or discharge. this is anover-simplification but, pacu can be a very fast paced area where both thepatient population and their acuity change rapidly. this would be a change from the icu setting, where you may spend a full shift or even a week of shifts, with the same patient. personally, i like the rapid turnover.
checkout aspan.com for more information on post anesthesia nursing.