Best Periop 101 programs

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Hi,

I’m a circulating nurse in a private surgery center with four OR’s. We specialize in cataracts, retina, oculoplastics, and facial plastic surgery. I have one year experience and want to transition into a traditional hospital OR. I want to find a great periop 101 program. What suggestions do you all have? I currently make 36$ an hour in Oregon and would love to move up in my hourly wage. Also do you all think it’s going to be hard to get into a periop program without acute care experience? If you have some advice I’d love to know hourly wage, and periop locations. 

Thanks!

RN_JuJu

14 Posts

I actually started off my first circulating job at an outpatient surgery center that specialized in ophthalmology, too! I was there for 2 years before I transitioned into a main OR at an acute care hospital. My current job actually put me through the AORN PeriOp 101 program due to my limited circulating experience. 

That being said, while it's difficult to find a traditional hospital OR with such ~specialized~ circulating experience, it's definitely not impossible. I found that applying to smaller, rural hospitals seemed to be a better bet than applying to the bigger hospitals... Mainly because rural hospitals seemed more desperate/willing to train OR nurses, whereas the bigger hospitals were more competitive (at least in California).

The hospital I work at currently is pretty small. We have 3 main ORs, 2 outpatient ORs (for ortho), and 1 cystoscopy room. So I guess you could say 6 OR rooms total. However, we're a pretty busy hospital despite our size. One of the benefits of a smaller hospital is that you get trained in all the different specialties! My hospital trained me to circulate/scrub in Cardio-Thoracic, Vascular, Plastics, Urology, Orthopaedics, Gynecology/Obstetrics, General/Laparoscopic, and Ophthalmology procedures. Sometimes with bigger hospitals, they'll have a separate team for Cardio-Thoracic cases and you may not get the opportunity to be trained in those types of cases. Just a FYI. ? Big downside of rural hospitals though is pay - definitely not getting paid as much as those bigger hospitals! Sometimes you just have to get the experience first for a few years before being able to make it real big.

I say to apply to all the Staff Nurse I/II Surgery/OR positions in the areas you want to work in and see who accepts you. Best of luck!

r.breneiser

4 Posts

Thank you so much for the information!! May I ask what hospital you work for? So far I feel like circulating in ophthalmology and oculoplastics has been great. I’m 7 months pregnant so it’s been a great environment to work. I’d like to spend a least a year here then transition. I’m not sure if I should apply for a period 101 course though. You’re advice about applying to smaller rural hospitals is a great idea! I live in southern Oregon so there are definitely options for that nearby. Did you have to travel to do your periop class? 

RN_JuJu

14 Posts

9 hours ago, r.breneiser said:

Thank you so much for the information!! May I ask what hospital you work for? So far I feel like circulating in ophthalmology and oculoplastics has been great. I’m 7 months pregnant so it’s been a great environment to work. I’d like to spend a least a year here then transition. I’m not sure if I should apply for a period 101 course though. You’re advice about applying to smaller rural hospitals is a great idea! I live in southern Oregon so there are definitely options for that nearby. Did you have to travel to do your periop class? 

Oh sorry, maybe I wasn't clear. The AORN Periop 101 course I did was through my hospital. I didn't travel or apply to a course/program on my own. It was part of my on the job orientation/training, and provided to me by my perioperative nurse educator. 

During my training I had days where I had didactic classroom training(online periop 101 courses) and then clinical days where I did hands-on training with a preceptor. Unfortunately, my hospital no longer has a  nurse educator for our department, so they aren't looking to hire inexperienced nurses at this moment. ?

Specializes in ICU, Trauma, CCT,Emergency, Flight, OR Nursing. Has 27 years experience.

Hi there, most of the very big academic / teaching hospitals usually run PeriOp 101 programs a few times a year. I am at Stanford in California and completed mine 2 years ago ( it was just for experienced in house nurses) . We did not have one last year due to Covid and I have not heard if there will be a course yet this year. I know Univ of Washington (Seattle) offers the course , as does UC Davis (Sacramento ) , UCLA , Cedars Sinai and USC University Hospital amongst others. Just check their career page via their website and look under Preoperative Nursing positions. They are usually posted there.