I was nervous I was going to end up just answering phones or something but I got to work on the floor. The charge nurse showed me around and had me get fresh water for all the patients since it was morning and many hadn't gotten any yet. After that there wasn't much to do so I answered call lights to sort of field them. Sometimes if it was something simple like taking a tray I just did it but for any real care I had to call a nurse, but at least then I could tell them what the patient needed to save them a trip.
I did end up being a little bored the last hour or so though so I'm switching to doing 2 hours twice a week instead of 4 hours once a week so hopefully I'll be busier and get exposure to more people, both staff and patients. The charge nurse was really nice and went out of her way to make sure I got to see some different things even if they weren't things that I could help with, knowing that I was a pre-nursing student. She also answered some questions I had, like whether this particular hospital hires a lot of new grads (they do! yay!).
The floor I was on was mainly med/surg but it's also kind of a catch-all for anything not ICU or in labor.
I'm really glad I decided to do it. Sometimes at this stage of just doing prereqs I worry that maybe I won't like nursing after all but doing stuff like this makes me feel more confident that nursing is for me. I'm eager to actually do care so I'm looking forward to getting my CNA.
How about you? Are you volunteering? How is it going?
Oct 4, '13
I am! I work on Women's Care. I get to float around from labor, postpartum, and nursery. I've done everything from making posters, to stocking cribs, to helping clean rooms.
It's been awesome. I actually got to see a delivery my second day.
The nurses are really awesome especially since they know I plan on going into nursing and Women's Care is my dream unit. I am in love.
Oct 4, '13
Ahhh I want to do that! AFAIK the only similar volunteering position is rocking babies in NICU. It sounds fun but I figured the floor would be better experience. I would love to do what you're doing though!
Oct 6, '13
Maybe I need to switch to Women's Care
I actually volunteer in the Pediatric Otolaryngology Department and I absolutely love it. I get to interact with the children, escort them to pre-op registration. I get to console the parents and answer the patient scheduling/concerns line. I send directives, input schedules in the computer, check mail, assist the doctors in determining traveling needs, keeping up with their schedules, editing their resumes, providing updates on patients when necessary. I also take consent forms to pre-op and fill in the info in the book, oh & file patient charts or documentation. I do not have set duties. Being that I am a certified medical assistant, they let me do way more than the average volunteer is allowed to do. I love when I have to transfer a call to our NP because I get to listen in on how he assess patient concerns (which prepares me for things to come). I get new duties added on almost daily so I'm never really bored. I have been doing this for 2 months now, 18 hours a week. I actually wanted to be in the NICU since my ultimate goal is to be a neonatal NP but there were no open slots and I was lucky to get this position in peds.
Oct 9, '13
Congratulations! I'm not a volunteer yet, but I am hoping to become one at a children's hospital over here. I am a little scared about it though, but your experience sounds like it's not that bad. I'm currently taking my prereqs as well by the way.
Oct 9, '13
That's great! What an awesome way to network, learn, AND help out at the same time!
Glad you had a good experience.
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