Yay, I landed a job as a District School Nurse! I have 4 elementary schools and 1 middle school. I really like it and think it will be amazing. My delimma is that I do not have any guidance. I am one of a few new District Nurses who have recently been hired. The former Nurses retired over a year ago and do not wish to Precept/Orient. Thankfully, each school has an AMAZING health assistant who basically takes care of the students during the school day! I do have a handle regarding what is expected regarding immunizations, clinic, supplies, med administration and the basic day to day running of the nurses office.
REALLY, It is the IEP's I need help with. Since there has not been a District Nurse for quite some time, I do not know what to do with the multitude of requests I am getting for IEP's, and hearing and vision screens. I was hired as a BSN, PHN, but do not have my Audiometrist Certificate. I did apply for my Preliminary School Nurse credential which has not yet been confirmed and, I do not have experience in School Nursing. I did purchase "School Nursing a Comprehensive Text" and have been reading everything I can get my brain around.
From what I understand when a child is referred for an IEP, the teacher (or I, if I am notified) will send out a health questionairre to the parent. I have received several questionairres from the parent and reviewed their history and cum files. What is next step? From what I understand, I would discuss with parent if there are any concerns from health history, set up and perform hearing and vision screening and write up a report on my findings. My quandary is that I have not been trained to perform vision screen (and am I even qualified to perform this test in my current unconfirmed prelim status without any experience?), not certified in audiometry, and no idea what is expected of me in my report. Do I also do my own head to toe assessment on child?
Obviously I have met with my supervisor and discussed my concerns and asked about a possible school nurse consultant I would bounce questions off of. The answer I received is they are working on getting me a preceptor, which may start mid October, and to just get to know the schools/students in the mean time. I am not exactly sure what that answer exactly means, and me being OCD about getting things done, it feels like I need to do something because from everything I am reading, the IEP's and screenings are the main focus of this job, since I have Amazing Health Assistants who do day to day student stuff.
Any ideas? I do have two other nurses I have contacted in districts that are close to mine, but I feel like they really do not want to help. I get answers like, "just write up the report", without any idea what the guidelines are. Of course I have searched for any guidelines or protocols for my position but have yet to find any. Am I totally missing something here?
Scistav - thank you so much! May I ask where I can find those guidelines regarding only testing distance vision with Snellen? I have been given our eye screen machine and expected to know how to use it before next week. But I cannot imagine using it on EVERY child - it would make sense to use it on those that fail, but even then, it is alot of work!
Also, the nurse who left did hear & vision screens every year on all IEP students! I did not think that was the normal. But now that all of these IEPS state to do H&V screen every year, I believe I am stuck having to do them??
Thank you so much for the help. Feel free to message me anytime if I can be of help to you, or you just want to vent.
Last edit by elprup on Sep 30, '12
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