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Adult Oncology to Pediatrics

Pediatric   (670 Views | 5 Replies)

776 Profile Views; 29 Posts

Hi! I recently accepted a position in acute med/surg in Pediatrics and I'm so excited but super nervous. I've worked in acute oncology/medsurg/telemetry for a year now. My orientation for my new position is 6 weeks. Does anyone have any tips and recommendations for me? Any good reading?

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luna9909 specializes in Pediatrics.

4 Posts; 35 Profile Views

Hey! Congrats on the job! A lot of your skills are going to transfer over well, it will mostly be adapting to the changes that come with much smaller patients! Another huge component of pediatrics is learning to work with the families. It can be the most trying part of the job. Try to be patient with the over-stressed and under-rested parents (and also be patient with yourself!). 

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JRT1 is a MSN, RN and specializes in Leadership.

12 Posts; 60 Profile Views

I have managed a few pediatric units and I always like hiring adult med/surg nurses.  Unfortunately (or fortunately) you don't get to practice a lot of variety in nursing skills in the pediatric environment.  I don't mean that in a negative way at all but most pediatric inpatient units have fairly straightforward patients.  In adult med/surg you see it all..the chest tubes, the drains, the central lines...where in peds its not always commonplace to see these things frequently unless you are in a major children's hospital or a unit that specializes in such things.  The experience you will bring will be an asset to the unit.  You will be surprised how many skills will transfer.  Pediatric patients aren't "little adults" but they have similar anatomy that is often just smaller. 

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JadedCPN has 13 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Pediatrics, Pediatric Float, PICU, NICU.

1 Follower; 832 Posts; 7,923 Profile Views

9 minutes ago, JRT1 said:

I have managed a few pediatric units and I always like hiring adult med/surg nurses.  Unfortunately (or fortunately) you don't get to practice a lot of variety in nursing skills in the pediatric environment.  I don't mean that in a negative way at all but most pediatric inpatient units have fairly straightforward patients.  In adult med/surg you see it all..the chest tubes, the drains, the central lines...where in peds its not always commonplace to see these things frequently unless you are in a major children's hospital or a unit that specializes in such things.  The experience you will bring will be an asset to the unit.  You will be surprised how many skills will transfer.  Pediatric patients aren't "little adults" but they have similar anatomy that is often just smaller. 

I was really confused by the first part of your statement at first! But I come from always working in pediatric hospitals, where I see central lines, chest tubes, JP drains, foleys, epidurals, etc. etc. on a daily basis and especially in pediatric oncology.

OP brush up on your Childhood Development Stages/Ericson+Piaget - you don't need to memorize them like you are studying for an exam, but in pediatrics you do need to understand the basic concepts of them so you can appropriately interact with your patient depending on their age and development.

And yes, the biggest struggle without question is dealing with the parents. Try to always keep their perspective in mind, no matter how trying they may be...and they will be trying.

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humerusRN has 7 years experience.

100 Posts; 799 Profile Views

We have hired many adult RNs into my unit over the years - I hear from them that it almost feels like they are back to new grad status because, like another poster pointed out - kiddos ARE NOT little adults. They compensate differently. Get sick differently. Code differently. But this is why you have orientation! 🙂 You have the basic skills, you just have to learn to apply those to kiddos and you'll be set. Good luck on your new position! 

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7 Followers; 3,337 Posts; 23,165 Profile Views

Get yourself a Harriet Lane Handbook. 

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