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Advice from experienced RNs please!!!!!

SRNA   (1,937 Views 12 Comments)
by Missy89 Missy89 (New Member) New Member

Missy89 works as a Student Nurse.

5,493 Visitors; 135 Posts

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i'm currently working on my bsn and will be done this year. sadly enough i can say that i'm a bit disappointed with nursing. i originally wanted to go to med school, and really beginning to contemplate that idea again... i feel like nursing is really not what i expected it to be. sure there's so many things i can do with nursing, but will i actually like that program once i begin grad school? the only rotation i actually enjoy is peds and i can't even see myself doing that forever. however, i do have critical care, ob (most likely not) and psych (thats def out the question) to do as rotations, so maybe i'll like that.... i especially don't see myself being a bed side nurse for tooo long, because i really don't enjoy it. so far i'm thinking that my options are np, crna, dnp or just go to med school.... any rns who are in advanced practice once felt like this as a new rn, but found their passion afterwards?

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2,275 Visitors; 38 Posts

If you are almost finished with your BSN then I would suggest you stick with it and apply for an NP program. It will take less time than going to med school and you can do everything a med degree would allow on a primary level, even specializing(cardiology, GI, OB-GYN, critical care, etc..) without the high malpractice overhead cost. For work experience I would suggest going into an ICU because it will give you the most autonomy outside of home health nursing which you would not be able to do coming straight out of nursing school.

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foraneman has 22 years experience and works as a CRNA, Medical Legal Consultant.

6,689 Visitors; 199 Posts

I absolutely positively HATED nursing (no offense...no emails please) and certainly would have left it years ago had I not gone to anesthesia school. It is an entirely different experience and simply the best career I know of.

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Qwiigley has 11 years experience and works as a CRNA (Nurse Anesthetist).

7,635 Visitors; 564 Posts

I liked nursing, but then I think it was because I immediately went into a Level One Trauma Center for pediatrics in the PICU. I could have never gone to a floor or (gasp) a community hospital. Anesthesia is wonderful and I love the challenge. I would suggest you try to get as much experience as you can in critical care and see if that is for you. After 2-3 years, if its not, go to medical school. (if you think you will ike it).

My concerns would be over socialized medicine and Obama in relation to the $125,000 of debt from medical school you will incur only to be told you can't make more than $100,000 a year being a doctor. (speculation).

I feel so sorry for the doctors I know who went through all that extra education and work and money, only to potentially be told where to work and what they can make. Sucks if you ask me. Also, your malpractice insurance is high (stupid public thinks doctors are rolling in money).

Just my 2 cents!:twocents:

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3,636 Visitors; 76 Posts

Dang! I navigated away from this page because I really didn't want to get into typing my response. I'm back, because I think I have some info that you might find helpful. If this offends anyone, I'm sorry; I'm just trying to be honest in case it helpd this poster.

I absolutely despised nursing...when I was a respiratory therapist. I busted my tail in RT school to learn everything possible about the field and to become a great RT. The school was very, very good and was nearly on par in difficulty and was on par with relevance of info taught as my current CRNA program. When I graduated, I had a very firm knowledge of hemodynamics, HD monitoring, relevance to various pathologic conditions and various co-morbidities etc. I hit the hospital in my first job to find out that RTs were viewed as less intelligent, less educated ancillary staff who worked under RNs. I about lost my mind having to give albuterol treatments to renal patients who couldn't breath secondary to pulmonary edema, CHF patients in acute decompensation etc. When I'd suggest that, while I gave the "ordered" breathing treatment that the RN might want to consider BIPAP to buy time until they could treat what was causing the problem, they'd look at me like I was nuts...until their pt coded. I left this hospital and moved three states away so that I could be at hospital that viewed me as an asset and appreciated my abilities. Yet, the same general view remained. This "I'm the RN and you need to do what I say" mentality usually came from the most ignorant of the RNs.

The cause of this problem is multi-faceted, but the fact that low functioning RTs are allowed to keep their jobs and are rotated into all departments as a matter of fairness and political correctness has a lot to do with the way other HCP's view RT. I finally decided that I wanted more and made the commitment to become a CRNA.

When I returned to school for my BSN, it quickly became apparent why there are so many nurses out there who looked at me like I was crazy when I suggested just about anything above and beyond giving a breathing treatment for any difficulty breathing scenario. While I'm sure that it is very important to learn about transcultural nursing, two semesters of it is a little overkill. While it is important to grasp the understanding that what we do is research based, understanding good research vs bad research and the general concept that care is based on research based/evidence based knowledge, I don't think it should not be the predominant, driving theme of a school of nursing. It is common sense, really. I could not believe the lack of pathophysiology courses and what would be their integration with critical care nursing if they existed. 100% of my CRNA classmates from all over the US say the exact same thing. There should be some component of pathophysiology and critical care nursing that is being taught every semester from at least year two on. My class graduated ~56 students and I guarantee you that half of those students were not A students going above and beyond to learn all they needed to know on their own. So, I think I can honestly say that that 50% left prepared to go to a floor, dispense meds, possibly catch an error by an MD regarding a contraindication, and catch a situation going bad after it is already getting bad.

Now for the reason for this long-winded response. BSN programs are similar across the US. Just because you are second guessing nursing because of your current experience in school, don't quit. YOU are the determining factor of what you will learn, where you will work, and how challenging/stimulating this career will be once you graduate. You will learn a bunch when you start work, especially if you go in and let the hospitals know that you wanting to be in CC and that you have the motivation and intellectual capacity and diligence to go straight into a unit. Floor nursing is very important and God knows I wish there were critical care nurses in every position in every hospital, because most issues start long before the ICU and diligent nursing on the floor is critical. Unfortunately there is the population of students who just get by that end up as floor nurses, and this population is analogous to the low functioning RTs that made RT impossible for me to stay in. There are AWESOME floor nurses, but is because of this low preforming group that protocols are limited and your ability to intervene in the most efficient manner on the floor is severely limited. These problems decrease significantly in ICUs, and become almost non-existent in specialty ICUs like CVICU and TSICU.

I hope I didn't misunderstand your frustration with nursing, but it seems that you want to be in a program that will give you a career in which you are surrounded by competent co-workers who are team players with critical roles and who all want to be the best they can be. It sounds like you want to learn much and become valued for your unique abilities to handle complex and stressful situations. That nursing degree will be a platform from which you can springboard into such a position via several different pathways. Don't be discouraged by your clinical experiences during school, as you are limited to what the school sets up for you. Once out, you can achieve any level you desire and are willing to work to achieve, and I don't know of any other profession that allows for so much diversity in upward mobility as does nursing. Sorry for such the long response, and good luck to you no matter what you decide to do.

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foraneman has 22 years experience and works as a CRNA, Medical Legal Consultant.

6,689 Visitors; 199 Posts

Dang! I navigated away from this page because I really didn't want to get into typing my response. I'm back, because I think I have some info that you might find helpful. If this offends anyone, I'm sorry; I'm just trying to be honest in case it helpd this poster.

I absolutely despised nursing...when I was a respiratory therapist. I busted my tail in RT school to learn everything possible about the field and to become a great RT. The school was very, very good and was nearly on par in difficulty and was on par with relevance of info taught as my current CRNA program. When I graduated, I had a very firm knowledge of hemodynamics, HD monitoring, relevance to various pathologic conditions and various co-morbidities etc. I hit the hospital in my first job to find out that RTs were viewed as less intelligent, less educated ancillary staff who worked under RNs. I about lost my mind having to give albuterol treatments to renal patients who couldn't breath secondary to pulmonary edema, CHF patients in acute decompensation etc. When I'd suggest that, while I gave the "ordered" breathing treatment that the RN might want to consider BIPAP to buy time until they could treat what was causing the problem, they'd look at me like I was nuts...until their pt coded. I left this hospital and moved three states away so that I could be at hospital that viewed me as an asset and appreciated my abilities. Yet, the same general view remained. This "I'm the RN and you need to do what I say" mentality usually came from the most ignorant of the RNs.

The cause of this problem is multi-faceted, but the fact that low functioning RTs are allowed to keep their jobs and are rotated into all departments as a matter of fairness and political correctness has a lot to do with the way other HCP's view RT. I finally decided that I wanted more and made the commitment to become a CRNA.

When I returned to school for my BSN, it quickly became apparent why there are so many nurses out there who looked at me like I was crazy when I suggested just about anything above and beyond giving a breathing treatment for any difficulty breathing scenario. While I'm sure that it is very important to learn about transcultural nursing, two semesters of it is a little overkill. While it is important to grasp the understanding that what we do is research based, understanding good research vs bad research and the general concept that care is based on research based/evidence based knowledge, I don't think it should not be the predominant, driving theme of a school of nursing. It is common sense, really. I could not believe the lack of pathophysiology courses and what would be their integration with critical care nursing if they existed. 100% of my CRNA classmates from all over the US say the exact same thing. There should be some component of pathophysiology and critical care nursing that is being taught every semester from at least year two on. My class graduated ~56 students and I guarantee you that half of those students were not A students going above and beyond to learn all they needed to know on their own. So, I think I can honestly say that that 50% left prepared to go to a floor, dispense meds, possibly catch an error by an MD regarding a contraindication, and catch a situation going bad after it is already getting bad.

Now for the reason for this long-winded response. BSN programs are similar across the US. Just because you are second guessing nursing because of your current experience in school, don't quit. YOU are the determining factor of what you will learn, where you will work, and how challenging/stimulating this career will be once you graduate. You will learn a bunch when you start work, especially if you go in and let the hospitals know that you wanting to be in CC and that you have the motivation and intellectual capacity and diligence to go straight into a unit. Floor nursing is very important and God knows I wish there were critical care nurses in every position in every hospital, because most issues start long before the ICU and diligent nursing on the floor is critical. Unfortunately there is the population of students who just get by that end up as floor nurses, and this population is analogous to the low functioning RTs that made RT impossible for me to stay in. There are AWESOME floor nurses, but is because of this low preforming group that protocols are limited and your ability to intervene in the most efficient manner on the floor is severely limited. These problems decrease significantly in ICUs, and become almost non-existent in specialty ICUs like CVICU and TSICU.

I hope I didn't misunderstand your frustration with nursing, but it seems that you want to be in a program that will give you a career in which you are surrounded by competent co-workers who are team players with critical roles and who all want to be the best they can be. It sounds like you want to learn much and become valued for your unique abilities to handle complex and stressful situations. That nursing degree will be a platform from which you can springboard into such a position via several different pathways. Don't be discouraged by your clinical experiences during school, as you are limited to what the school sets up for you. Once out, you can achieve any level you desire and are willing to work to achieve, and I don't know of any other profession that allows for so much diversity in upward mobility as does nursing. Sorry for such the long response, and good luck to you no matter what you decide to do.

Very, very, very well said.

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ICU.traveler has 9 years experience.

1,940 Visitors; 23 Posts

i'd say finish your bsn, and start studying for mcat. i once was there. finished by bsn and hated nursing. i loved the patient care. i loved taking care of people with balloon pumps, crrt, swans etc. but i hated the politics in nursing, the back stabbing, the paperwork, and never-ending nursing policies and protocols that came about from someone screwing something up. i hated the restraint orders, hated taking unstable intubated patient with chest tubes to interventional radiology for picc line placement, the hospital didn't want to train a nurse to do it at the bedside, so patient had to be charged for the inerventionalist time.

so i went to crna school, and have 9 more months to go. well it's better than bedside nursing. the whole charting is down to one page anesthesia record. one patient at the time. you don't have to call for the restraint orders. however, the anesthesia attending may walk in to your room at any time and tell you to change your anesthetic plan, regardless what you think about it. sometimes it works out better for the patient, sometimes it doesn't. you end up following orders just like an rn. yes, i know crnas can practice independently, but i'm training on the east coast, so i've yet to see an independent crna.

you need to find out what you don't like about nursing. if you don't like taking orders and want to be in charge all the time, you need to go to med school. if you want to be independent practitioner, you need to go to med school. no matter how advanced you are going to be as a nurse, you will be taking orders for the rest of your carrier. funny enough, the anesthesiologists take orders from surgeons.

bottom line, if you want to be a leader, go to med school. try to get in to us school, if not check out caribbean schools, i've met plenty of residents both surgery and anesthesia who graduated from foreign schools.

if i could do it again, i would most certainly go to med school.

just my 2cent

traveler

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labcat01 works as a Mom, critical care nurse, NP student, all around w.

6,344 Visitors; 629 Posts

you need to find out what you don't like about nursing. if you don't like taking orders and want to be in charge all the time, you need to go to med school. if you want to be independent practitioner, you need to go to med school. no matter how advanced you are going to be as a nurse, you will be taking orders for the rest of your carrier. funny enough, the anesthesiologists take orders from surgeons.

yes! so true- i don't know anyone liked nursing in nursing school. it is a bit different once you are out of there. you've gotten great advice so far. i would really try to get some experience as a critical care nurse before you make any big decisions. when you are in nursing school, you don't really have a clue about what crnas and nps really do. also, you don't really understand the crummy work schedules of the mds either (believe me- their jobs are no picnic). good luck with whatever you decide!

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889 Visitors; 14 Posts

Stick with it, and as someone who has worked in a L1 TRUMA ICU for 5 years before starting CRNA school, I can tell you it is MUCH diff. than bedside nursing. Like anything you have to find your nitch, and even going the med school route, you'll be stuck doing years of rotations in areas you may not enjoy as well... the road to becoming an advanced practice nurse (or an MD) is no easy task, you have to work your way through areas/experiences you may not enjoy, which is why advanced practice nursing is not for everyone. I would get your BSN, and then try TRAUMA nursing, if you like that, get your CCRN, and go from there. Good luck!

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yhl1975 has 17 years experience and works as a Outpatient mental health /detox.

5,185 Visitors; 134 Posts

It is nice that you like pediatrics. No sure if you tried non-hospital facilities: outpatient, clinics, ambulatory care. Please do not go to bed side nursing. Trust your own instincts, go inside, follow your heart.

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traumaRUs has 27 years experience as a MSN, APRN and works as a Asst Community Manager @ allnurses.

15 Followers; 134 Articles; 186,527 Visitors; 20,710 Posts

Moved to SRNA forum

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1 Follower; 12,686 Visitors; 687 Posts

No one ever comes in my room and changes my anesthetic. I’ve been a nurse for 37 years and a CRNA for 29 and I couldn’t be happier with my career. I truly enjoyed my ICU experience and my anesthesia career both. But I was medically directed 1 year only and even then no one changed my anesthetic. 

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