HI I am a new grad, and was offered an agency position. I really dont feel I have enough experience yet to do this - was wondering how long do you thinkyou should work before you can be an effective agency nurse - the salary and flex is really appealing
Mar 6, '07
Working for an agency as a new grad is not a good idea! As far as how long you should be a nurse before working for an agency, that varies from person to person. In order to be a good agency nurse, you have to be knowledgeable and experienced, and able to function effectively with little guidance. You have to be comfortable with your "real job" before going agency...for some people this is a year or two. You have to really know the basic nursing skills, because when you are agency you have to worry about different policies at other hospitals...and be willing to ask questions when you are working. I think a good way to "practice" working agency is by picking up extra shifts on other units in your own hospital. This will give you the experience of working some place else and learning different routines of a unit, yet the overall policies will be the same as the unit you work on.
Mar 6, '07
My friend got her first job right out of school at an agency by claiming that she had two yrs experience as she was coached to say. She was sent to work shifts in LTC facilities and was not very happy with the situation. I worked in a LTC facility that started bringing in agency nurses and first hand observed how shoddily the agency nurses were treated. The facility was a h*** hole to begin with; that was why they couldn't keep staff. I would get enough experience that you feel confident in yourself before going agency if I were you. There is too much at stake. You have to expect that you may be sent to toxic environments and you don't have time to get used to all the things that are going on in these workplaces while at the same time trying to lay down a good foundation of skills. Just MHO.
Mar 6, '07
Thanks for the info, I will admit the extra 10 an hour is very tempting but I just had teh feeling it would end in disaster- may be when I have been at it longer I can think about it - I like my unit and would hate to leave