I have been a bedside nurse for 20 years. I am currently on a leave of abscence from my full time job, to take care of some personal family issues. However, I would like to pick up some prn work to help with finances. I have been offered a position as a substitute school nurse on a prn basis. My concern is that I have never done this kind of nursing, and doubt I will get much if any orientation. I would appreciate your thoughts and advise.
Dec 10, '12
no, chances are you probably won't get any orientation. The only "orientation" i've ever given any of my sub nurses was just showing the routine to the sub nurses that elected to stop by my office unpaid on thier own time to get the scoop. I mean, you could ask if they will pay you to get a half day orientation, but i know my districts have never gone for it. Don't let this dissuade you though. If you've been a bedside nurse for 20 years, you alread possess the time management and critical thinking skills that this job requires. Sub school nursing doesn't entail a lot of the more in-depth stuff we have to deal with. It's mostly just managing the office and passing the meds for the day or attending a field trip. I say you give it a shot!
Dec 10, '12
No most school nurses don't get much, if any, orientation but it's doable. Tell them the first couple times you sub you would like to be notified in advance so you can call the nurse of the school you'll be at and ask them to tell you any important stuff. Also, they will most likely let you shadow someone without pay most likely but it would help you feel better. When you get called to sub just find out what time you need to be there, go to the main office, sign in, ask for the keys to the nurse's office and where it is, then find the substitute instructions and go from there. First thing, make sure you figure out who needs meds or blood sugar checks first thing in the morning and get those ducks in a row. Then make yourself a little schedule of the rest of the day who needs what. Find the bathroom, ice packs, thermometer, supplies, etc and then you'll be good to go. It can be very intimidating at first but once you do it a few times you'll see it's going to be fine. I'd say go for it!