I would like some input from the travel nurse veterans-- I have been on my assignment for a week now. I am learning a new computer system. I am getting it, but I am slower than the other nurses. My clinical skills are where they need to be, but I am slow. How long should you give yourself to get up to par ? I feel I am doing well, but I am terrified at the same time.
Slower clinically or computer charting? Both will improve in practice. The more difficult the assignment, the faster your skills will improve.
I'm usually not completely comfortable until at least a few weeks. It just depends on the charting system, how well organized they have their supplies and how busy they are. For example, I learned MedHost charting in a day , easily, but it took me much longer to learn MediTech and Epic because one is old and the other there are so many ways to do something it can get confusing. Also, if they are very busy, you'll learn things much faster because you are doing it much more often.
Sometimes I'm comfortable after 2-3 weeks, sometimes it's 8 - 10 weeks. Just depends on the above variables for me. No matter what, I'm always asking lots of questions and I've never had any problems with anyone answering me.
The fact you're on travel doesn't apply to the situation in and of itself. You'd have this experience even if you took the position as a staff nurse.
The fact you're slower than your coworkers is a GOOD thing. It means you're being careful, taking your time to not make mistakes while using equipment and supplies different from what you're accustomed to, documenting thoroughly in a system that is new to you, getting familiar with the physician's orders, hospital protocols and many other things. Don't worry so much how many weeks or months it takes others to feel fully efficient. It's different for everybody, and each persons perception of being efficient is different. What you're experiencing is perfectly normal and should be expected.
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