ER Or The Floor?

  1. I've been working cardiac progressive care the last few years and am pretty tired of seeing the same patients/family members for weeks on end; tired of the insane, micro-charting of every fart and burp of every patient and layers upon layers of careplans.

    I hate getting involved in the minutia of every aspect of the patient's lives, esp. when it comes to discharge....fretting over where they will go, who will take them, how will they get their meds? Who will look after them when they're home? Arrrrrrgh!

    The ER manager has asked me if I was interested in coming to work for her, so now I'm thinking about it.

    I must say, the treat em and street em mentality is quite appealing; BUT......

    I think there's more verbal/physical abuse in the ER than on the floors, although we do get our share. More drunks, more snappy little attitudes of drug seekers.

    Also, you're exposed to all those common URI's and undiagnosed influenza's (MOST of the time the culture's back BEFORE they hit the floor, but not always).

    So.....what do ya think? Do you get sick more often, and are you a daily punching bag? What percent of patients would you say are abusive?

    Don't worry about the pace......I love a challenge and would be bored if it were slow!
  2. Visit RunningWithScissors profile page

    About RunningWithScissors

    Joined: Oct '06; Posts: 228; Likes: 113

    11 Comments

  3. by   TazziRN
    based on what's making you unhappy, I think you'd be better off in the ER. ER nurses, it's said, have immune systems that can kill a squirrel at 500 yards!
  4. by   gonzo1
    Your immune system will get use to the bugs and in a year or two be strong as steel. If you didn't get sick alot on the floor, you shouldn't in ER. Sometimes I wear a mask if I'm not sure and they are coughing and sneezing alot.
    ER sounds like a good choice for you. I have been careful and have not been hit, just keep arms length until you are sure of your pt and their response. I love the ER. You still get attached to some of the pts, but only for a couple of hours. It is nice to be able to help them in their scariest and sickest hour of need. You need to look on the drunks and psyches as entertainment and have a healthy sense of self and sense of humour. In a few years if you can no longer do this then you can try yet another unit like same day surgery or something.
    You should give the ER a try, sounds like it is a good match for you at this time.
  5. by   BSNtobe2009
    My grandma used to tell me that it took her almost 20 years to figure out that the ER was the best place to work and ER night shift was even better. This probably isn't the case in a large, inner-city hospital, but in your average size city, I don't think it would be a bad place to be.

    Her highlight of the night was a baby or car-accident. No meals, no baths, no med rounds, very few visitors, no flowers, etc.
  6. by   EmerNurse
    Definately ER (not that I'm biased lol). Seriously, I don't get anymore sick in the ER than I have anywhere else. My kids bring home more cooties than I do from work. As for violence... I've never been physically attacked -and if someone even seems remotely aggressive, our security is there in a heartbeat, looking lean and mean <g>. Verbal abuse? Occassionally, but since these people don't know ME personally, it's easy to let it roll off.
  7. by   Jennifer, RN
    I transferred from a cardiac tele floor to the ER for the same reasons as you are tired of working on a tele floor. I have found that I LOVE the ER. You're right, you don't get involved in the mundane aspects of taking care of pts for 12 hrs a day, multiple shifts a week. I have found family are usually more respectful (like I said, usually) during times of crisis in the ER than on a day to day basis on the floor. We still sometimes have to arrange for pharmacy to supply meds to an indigent pt and we still have to work with families sometimes with home health and placement (especially psych placement) but much less often.
    Try the ER, and if you don't love it after 6 months off orientation (give yourself some time to adjust to the fast, chaotic pace and stressful environment), then you can always work somewhere else. That is the beauty of nursing.
  8. by   aberrn
    Sounds like you'd like the ER.

    Fast paced,hectic,rarely boring.

    Never been assaulted,if it was to happen they'd be arrested PDQ..Security would be all over them anyway..

    ER nurses have awesome immune systems,never get sick except seasonal sinusitis.

    Give it a shot,I believe you'll love it.

    GOOD LUCK..
  9. by   nursebearfeet
    I worked on an orthopedic trauma floor for 7 years before i made the move to the er. I got a great wealth of knowledge there and am thankful for it. Having said that, I'll never go back to floor nursing. I love the ER. I work in a level 1 trauma center, there's never a dull moment. People running in with gun shot wounds, stabbings, you name it, I love it. Don't sell your self short, give it a try. If you dont like it move on to the next opportunity!






    Quote from RunningWithScissors
    I've been working cardiac progressive care the last few years and am pretty tired of seeing the same patients/family members for weeks on end; tired of the insane, micro-charting of every fart and burp of every patient and layers upon layers of careplans.

    I hate getting involved in the minutia of every aspect of the patient's lives, esp. when it comes to discharge....fretting over where they will go, who will take them, how will they get their meds? Who will look after them when they're home? Arrrrrrgh!

    The ER manager has asked me if I was interested in coming to work for her, so now I'm thinking about it.

    I must say, the treat em and street em mentality is quite appealing; BUT......

    I think there's more verbal/physical abuse in the ER than on the floors, although we do get our share. More drunks, more snappy little attitudes of drug seekers.

    Also, you're exposed to all those common URI's and undiagnosed influenza's (MOST of the time the culture's back BEFORE they hit the floor, but not always).

    So.....what do ya think? Do you get sick more often, and are you a daily punching bag? What percent of patients would you say are abusive?

    Don't worry about the pace......I love a challenge and would be bored if it were slow!
  10. by   ED_Lifer
    Your mind will bacome a steel trap. You will develop cat-like reflexes. Your grappling/submission skills will become superhuman. Your ability to overlook unsults? God-like.

    Your friends will worship and bow before you. At the height of your carreer, an ER doc will ask you for....gasp! Your opinion.

    Little bit of verbal/physical abuse, but you will win every single time. Be friendly to the security guys. I'm 6'2", 230lbs. I STILL need their help.

    Go to the ER.
  11. by   RunnerRN
    I can honestly tell you I've never charted about a fart
    You're going to get a ton of biased answers, but GET THYSELF TO ED!!!
    I love it here....I see my pts for 12 hrs, then go home and (95% of the time) don't come back to the same people. With regards to safety - as long as you have good security staff and coworkers, you'll be fine. Our safety is paramount to our management, and will support us to the death.
    Do you like variety and all ages? Are you assertive?
    Good luck w the decision!
  12. by   TouchstoneRN
    I LOVE the ER. I have worked MS, Tele, ICU and PCU...I hear ya', the ER is the only place to be. I was so bored with the mountain of flow sheets, skin sheets, careplan sheets...discharge planning, family phone calls, needy visitors...it's great in the ER, if a patient's visitor gets a bit needy, demanding or verbally abusive then a Security guard is right there to boot them out to the lounge...and having a Doc right there....how many hours I wasted waiting for the Attending, the Resident or the Surgeon to call me back? There is always someone right there to assist you... Again I will say...I LOVE THE ER!!!
  13. by   teeituptom
    The floor is where I will go when I am ready to step down to a slower pace when I get older. Untill then ERs the way. Either that or the driving range

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