Will refresher course help NICU Nurse

  1. Hi All,
    I worked NICU for 15 years and then out of health care for 15 years. I haven't worked with adults since school and really have no desire to do so. Everyone finds their niche and the babies were mine. I have kept my license current and have recently obtained BLSN and NRP certification. Am I being naive thinking I can rehire without this refresher course? I'd gladly take a NICU refresher and would welcome it. I'd be so nervous I'd have to be medicated to take care of adults. (and I know others have the same fear of stepping into the world of NICU)
    Thanks for any advice you have to offer. Very much appreciated.
  2. 11 Comments

  3. by   1RRRN
    15 years in NICU is alot of specialized knowledge! I would think you could try talking directly to a NICU about an orientation tailored to you. Maybe even propose a plan that includes CEU's from within the employer & professional associations to get started. It's hard to believe that you would completely forget everything you knew. That much experience is very valuable and you probably got to a level of expert then. Good luck! Skip adults....
  4. by   txbabylover
    I appreciate your reply, 1RRRN. The Megacode NRP certification was a breeze once I realized the manometer (pressure gauge) was now built into the anesthesia bag (flow-inflating bag).
    I just wondered if I was way-off-base by not doing refresher course that as far as I was concerned wouldn't help me that much in the NICU. I will take your advice and contact the hospitals, themselves.
    My biggest concern is... if after 4 kids in 5 years... my bladder can do a 12 hour shift.
  5. by   1RRRN
    Lol....4 kids? I think you know babies! That's good...you've still got humor. But,
    that's where a little Adult stuff comes in. I'm sure you've heard of Kegel and peri-pads! I did 15 years Pediatrics at Children's hospitals where it was drilled into my head that "kids aren't just little adults". Then I did 2 years of Adult Med/Surg where I heard "the elderly aren't just older adults". Ped's was alot more fun. But, adults can be cool too. YOU know you've got an edge on somebody with all that experience and updates. Why waste time refreshing stuff
    you never needed before? Just get a wave of energy and confidence going.
    Try to get a edu proposal in your mind to present and expect SUCCESS!
  6. by   1RRRN
    Oh and steer clear of "Human Resources" if you can. They are not your friends. Get to the hiring manager as quickly as possible. Talk now & future.
  7. by   txbabylover
    Ha! Oh yeah, Peri-Pads and Kegels, know them well. 20 years post hyst and I'm buying mini pads. That's unfair.
    Thank you for the head's up on Human Resources, in the old days those were the people who wanted you to scrub in and work the same day you applied for the job.
    Our big hospitals want you to apply online and I wondered how I would get past that but I'll try to find the hiring manager. All of my 20 CEU's are neonate related and I've been looking for conferences and working on your good idea of an education proposal.
    Whoa, you've worked several areas. Good for you. And you are so right about the differences in the age groups.
    When I was a graduate nurse, I applied at a Children's Hospital but they had nothing on the floor. They asked me to work in the Special Care of their NICU until they had an opening on the floor. Well, the opening came and went and I never wanted to leave my babies. Guess, I was lucky I found my niche but I tell my nursing student daughter to get and there and experience it all. Don't limit yourself.
    Thanks for all the good advice, I really appreciate it. After doing the obvious, I was kind of stifled as to what my next step should be. I kind of felt like I was dumped in the middle of the ocean and I knew how to swim...but because I didn't know where the shore was I didn't know which direction to start swimming.
  8. by   northwoodsmom
    I am in a very similar situation having had a NICU background, graduated 30 years ago (!) with BSN, worked at 2 University Hospital NICUs & 2 level II, a total of 7 or so years. Ventilators & meds & surgical techniques are all different. I've also worked as a school nurse for children with severe mental/physical disabilities, and as an MSN (perinatal)in an outpatient pediatric developmental clinic.
    Long story short- I now live in a rural area where 80% of the population is over 70 years old & very limited income. (I have lived here 7 years) I worked 3 months in the local hospital- I was the only RN & I was not prepared to get backinto the adult arena- the patients were 'sicker' than what I was used to...essentially after 3 months working I was asked to leave. I couldn't keep up the pace. I just resigned from a job as the only nurse in a family practice setting- again, I was told I was great with patients but not fast enough to keep up with other non-nursing items.
    I took an RN refresher course- the theory & skills piece (not the clinical piece) before I had the hospital job.
    So-I wonder if I should move back to my home town- a city in Ohio where there a teaching hospitals & a Children's Hospital, and go the route of the nICU as Txbabaylvr...i just don't think orientation is what it was decades ago...
    I really wonder if this is the end of my career.
  9. by   txbabylover
    We do have a lot in common! I'm from Ohio and my first job was NICU, Children's Hospital, Dayton, OH.
    I took 1RRRN's good advice and tried to speak with a hiring manager. The particular hospital system I wanted to apply to told me, basically..Ha! Apply online like everyone else.
    My resume was scarey...no in house nursing experience for 15 years.
    My cover letter made me realize how much I had done in my field and that I would be a very good hire as a PRN Nursery Nurse in this particular hospital. NB-Level III experience. Transports, taught Prenatal, Breast Feeding, Discharge classes, worked all socio-economic levels in Community, Children's, and Teaching Hospital. I thought I was a danged good hire. HA! 1RRRN is right, HR is not my friend. I made it through an online what would you do test before they told me they weren't considering me for the job. One of those Strongly Dislike, Dislike, No-Opinion, Like, Strongly Like tests that are so abstract. I wanted to type someplace..."Hey! I'm a grown woman, I know how to get along with my peer group and I will work my rear off for you when I'm on the clock." (well, if you look behind me, I'd have to work an awful lot of hours to work my rear off.)
    Now I don't even know, why I'm not being considered for this job? I've never ever not gotten a nursing job that I've applied for. Is it because I'm 54? (I didn't put my birthday on resume but they do know when I graduated from college. I live in the South...Is it because I'm not fluent in Spanish? I am a good nurse, easy to work with, and loved my babies and their families. I'd like to say...THEIR
  10. by   txbabylover
    LOSS!! But I'm sad, and unemployed.
    Sorry so long.
  11. by   txbabylover
    One more thing, then I'll shut up. Rather than keep griping I have another plan. First I applied in the Presbyterian System. This time I'm applying to the Baylor Hospital Systems and I'm going to contact anyone that I worked with that still works/or recently quit from a Baylor facility. None of my friends actually worked in the facility that I'm applying to but may know someone that will be a good contact...a phone number, at least. Maybe they can redirect me or put in a good word for me. I'm not ready to give up
  12. by   northwoodsmom
    :typingI wish you well- you are doing all that is possible....to think you & I have a good 10-15 years to still work (at least that's how I figure- my husband quit a job at GE in Cincinnati as an aerospace engineer, we put all our money plus indebted ourselves to purchase a family construction company- thinking our children would blossom in a very small town (we have 2 children, one is severly developmentally delayed- doesn't talk, isn't toilet trained, has autistic-like behaviors & has a disorder called cyclical vomiting syndrome which rears its ugly head every 6-8 weeks- sort of like a seizure). We didn't think things through- after 7 years in a very rural area where winters start in October & go through May, I'm ready to leave- thinking of going to Cleveland where I have family...& hope to get a job - my husband would stay until we were bankrupt- things in the housing industry may change, but we have bills to pay.
    Honestly- if i could get the money- I feel like I have a better chance getting a peds/NICU job if I went back to a 2 year program!!!
    Keep me posted on your search.
    By the way, I intereacted with a few NICU nurses from Dayton when I was in cincinnati :wink2:, as I worked on a Birth to Three Program & Cincinnati Children's Developmental Clinic (back then it was called CCDD)-
  13. by   1RRRN
    Well, now you know something that you didn't know before, Babylover.
    But, don't take it personally. You could persist in finding out what went
    wrong. But, the more contacts you have the better. Back to the drawing board.
    Another idea is to volunteer with an agency that might involve a NICU.
    March of Dimes? Churches...afgans for tykes? Laleche (?) League, Lamaze (?)
    instructor. Liaison Outreach nurse for somebody or other non-profit? Premie specialty stuff. Maybe even working business/product nurse rep?Part time Home Care? Public Health Outreach? Any insider at the NICU at all? Informational interview or causal encounter. Something that might give you an idea of what and who is going on related to the field. Contacts, skills and knowledge. Volunteering helps you get your confidence up and they always love to see you! Even volunteer at the hospital you want to get into! Which gets you in the nurse identity role again with something recent to talk about.
    Anyway, don't lose hope. Someone said something about getting back to yourself....but, really it is getting forward to the next you. It may be something new, related, or the next level up . Or may not be exactly what you have done before. Do not take it personally. You have your own new niche to discover. A professional career coach might have ideas too...usually free at your state employment office. Keep your head up. There is a door for YOU!