ICU vs Burn Unit

  1. As a new grad I am looking for a job in the ICU of this large teaching hospital. However, it seems that the nurse managers from ICU will hire experienced nurses vs a new grad. The same hospital has a burn unit, unfortunately it's not called burn ICU. It is a small unit, and they take all the critical patients with burns. There is a lot of hemodynamic monitoring, they even have an ECMO, vents, drips experience, etc. I am sure I would get a strong clinical experience and transfer later (probably in a year) to a regular ICU.
    On the other hand, there is hospital B, smaller than the teaching hospital, but still big comparison with lots of other hospitals around. I will most likely find an ICU job there, though I do not believe I would get the same clinical experience that i would get in the brun unit, but will count for Anesthesia School requirements.
    Which one would you choose? I really need to make a decision soon. Of course, I am waiting now for scheduling an interview in the teaching hospital's ICU, as I have not considered the other options before.
    Please, give me your opinions. I really need some guidance.

    Thanks, F
  2. Visit flaced profile page

    About flaced

    Joined: Jul '03; Posts: 49; Likes: 3


  3. by   kmchugh
    First, the standard response: Contact the directors of the programs you are interested in, and ask them which unit they feel would give you a better background for a program.

    More personally: All other things being equal, I'd take the job in the burn unit. My wife was a burn nurse, and as an SRNA and a CRNA, I learned that there is no more instructive, no more challenging, and no more complicated patient than the burn patient. You WILL learn fluids and electrolytes, hemodynamics, oxygenation and pulmonary function, and organ systems. Burns are all encompassing. Everything becomes involved in the major burn patient. Ounce for ounce, the severely burned patient will teach you more and test you more than any five post op heart patients.

    But that's just my opinion.

    Kevin McHugh, CRNA