I am considering applying for a psych nursing position in my area, but I am not in great physical shape, nor am I all that young. Would a small private psych hospital likley have techs and/or security to take over if a patient needed to be restrained?
Nov 9, '12
It depends on the facility. I worked at one hospital where nurses took over in psychiatric codes, and I worked at another hospital where nurses stood back while the MHAs (who were big ex-cops) tried to de-escalate the situation. As far as security goes..I have never worked at a unit that had security on the unit full time. They were always scattered about the hospital, and yes we could page them, but it takes them a few minutes so other interventions are necessary before they show up.
Nomatter what the status quo is for your unit, you definitely don't want the reputation as the person who conveniently has to go to the bathroom or something during codes. We have a few of those..and they don't go unnoticed, which is unfortunate for them because one day they may be the ones needing back-up.
Nov 10, '12
A good psych nurse is one that knows their patients, recognizes early on when changes occur, and then acts to deescalate the patient. Doing that minimizes the hands on interventions.
I still remember a very small female nurse (would buy her clothes in the boys section). She had no problem confronting a patient and setting limits.
It's all about working as a team.
Nov 10, '12
Being young and strong isn't what makes a good psych nurse. At 46 I'm one of the youngest on our unit, we have 2 nurses who are in their 70's. I'm female, 5'2, 102 lbs. Peer reviews and evaluations have always said I'm one of the best in crisis situations.
Nov 11, '12
Young and strong is no guarantee of success on a psych unit.
However, because of the nature of psych nursing, you will need to be capable of meeting certain physical requirements as defined by your facility. Even with techs and security on the scene, the odds are very good that you as a nurse will be involved in codes as well. Psych nursing definitely isn't a "light duty" job.
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