What are some options for RN + good with computers? Help :(

  1. I'm a senior nursing student (I know this isn't the nursing student forum.. hear me out...)... and...

    I just feel like I chose the completely wrong major. I'm not touchy-feely, I'm not inspired by nursing, and as a rule I really don't like interacting with people much. The thing I like is medicine and body systems. My original goal was to become a CRNA, but I'm just not sure I'll measure up. I don't know if I want to subject myself to 2.5 years of misery, knowing it's 2x harder than nursing school after I've already found nursing school to be miserable in itself.

    My friend told me about Nursing Informatics, and that sparked some excitement, but after reading up on it, it looks like you either have to be a programmer (which I'm not), or someone that's into research/management/ teaching or something... Plus... most of them seem to want you to get clinical experience, which I'm not keen on getting, seeing as how I'm struggling to find any area of nursing that I even might enjoy.

    My ideal job would be sitting behind a computer working at... something... without having to interact with many other people and without having to worry about killing someone! I type 105 words per minute and I usually pick up on computer systems pretty fast... I taught myself how to build and overclock computers...

    I don't know... Any ideas? I just don't think I'm built for nursing. All of my peers are all like, "Man I love this clinical" or "I cannot wait to go into _____" while I'm over here struggling to find something that I can even tolerate, let alone love.

    Sorry to sound negative... it's discouraging feeling that you might've wasted $1,000s and two years of your life on something you don't even want to do.
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  2. 4 Comments

  3. by   Cardiac-RN
    Unfortunately, the RN jobs away from actual patient care generally require 2-3 yrs minimum clinical experience to get in. Have you looked into utilization review? Although initial clinical experience is required, the actual UR position itself involves no clinical duties and has more to do with chart review/ communicating with healthcare providers/ and dx billing. Computer skills are definately a plus in this area as many of these positions are trending into a work-from-home deal with the advance of electronic charting and medical records. Good luck.
  4. by   Mesomorph
    Well... after I get my RN it looks like it's time for a career change.
  5. by   HealthyRN
    I went through a very difficult period during my senior year of my BSN program and extending into the first year that I was a nurse. I felt as though I made a huge mistake choosing nursing as a profession. I disliked all of my clinicals and then my first few jobs as a nurse and I really felt as though nursing was not for me. I stuck with it and although I still have moments when I wonder where my career path will lead me, I am glad that I did become a nurse.

    I would strongly encourage you to get at least a year of clinical nursing experience before you make any drastic decisions about a career change. A year of experience will open many, many doors of opportunites outside of acute care. There are opportunities in nursing informatics if you want to work with computers. I have a good friend that works for an electronic medical record company and she travels around that country and helps hospitals install the system. She does about 70% of her work at home, talking on the telephone and troubleshooting with clients. There are other opportunities in informatics also, but this is just an example. There are also lots of other nursing jobs that do not involve direct patient care. However, at least a year of bedside experience is usually necessary to obtain these positions. A year will go by quickly, especially when you are starting a new job and spending a few months in orientation. It may not be as bad as you are anticipating.

    There are other reasons to get a year of experience, even if you decide in the end to leave nursing. If you work for a university hospital system, they usually cover a portion of tuition for course-work at the university. My hospital system covers 75% of tuition. If you decide you want to go back to get another degree, this will help to reduce costs. Also, you can't beat the schedule for having a job and being able to take classes. After a year, you could look for a per diem or contingent position and decide when it is convenient for you to work around your class schedule.

    Also, getting at least a year of experience will show future employers that you were at least willing to give it a shot. Nursing experience will allow you to bring a lot of transferable skills and life experience to the table, no matter what career you end up pursuing. You may not be able to see it now, but this would be very valuable to employers in different disciplines.

    You never know where life may lead you. Ten years from now you may regret never having worked as a nurse. It will be so much harder to get back into nursing if you never worked in the field. Think carefully about your decision.
  6. by   anc33
    Nursing Informatics would be a great fit for you. Sounds like you would actually enjoy helping to create and set up the computer systems that we use in the hospital. If not, some aspects of pharmaceutical research might be the ticket. Data managers, usually employed for the pharma company, create and maintain databases where the information collected in drug research studies will be entered. They also have some other responsibilities in helping to organize the data for different research protocols. Those are the first two things that come to mind. I am sure that there are many other opportunities out there for you.

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