Hey all, I come from a critical care background but have an opportunity to work as a school nurse sub. I thought it would be a great opportunity to broaden my nursing experience and to pick up a few hours without being unavailable to my kids for a full 12hr shift.
I signed up as a sub for Thursday through an agency. When I reminded them I had never done this before their brief response was "oh, it's no big deal. A lot of nurses love doing it because it's easy. You just give meds to kids that have it ordered and you're available if they need you." Sounds simple enough... but now I'm getting nervous!
She told me I just check in to the office 20 minutes early so I have time to review the sub notes and that's all I should need. Oh, and she said there are not tube feeds at this school. (I never realized school nurses DID tube feeding!) This is just so far OUT of my comfort zone it's making me nervous when it probably shouldn't. It's kids and I'm used to being a nurse for big people (often VERY big people), it's during school so they're not hospitalized, and I'll be all alone.
I think that's what probably scares me the most. I am very comfortable floating just about anywhere in a hospital setting because I know there are other nurses there if I have questions. As a school nurse sub, I have NO orientation so I don't know the school, the people, or even the basic routine. I don't know the policies. What if something bad happened? In the ICU we're prepared because we expect these things - there's a crash cart, a code button, doctors on call, LOTS of great nurses all around, etc.
I'm a mom, but my kiddos are still pre-elementary (4&2) so I don't even have experience with this age group or in dealing with schools really at all. I'm sure things will be fine and I know you have to step outside your comfort zone to grow and I'm willing to do that - but I DO prefer to be a little prepared!
So, that's really what I'm asking for - some encouragement and some idea of what I can expect. Any tips for making things go smoothly? Anything I should ask? (I feel silly that I don't even know enough about school nursing to even know what questions I should be asking!) Aside from giving kids their meds (and is there a list I should find somewhere or how will I know who needs what? Do they come to me or do I find them?) what else should I expect? What else do school nurses do as subs? I remember from nursing school years ago that the school nurse implements a lot of education, I've read about how some of you have talked about immunization records, etc, but I don't see how I would do anything with that in one day as a sub.
Would love any advice you have!!! Thanks in advance