Employed student nurses

World Canada


Heard some rumours that the employed student nurse program in BC ( in particular FH and VCH authorities) will be cutting this program due to budget issues. Anyone else hear these rumours or does anyone had similar cuts in their health authority?

Our UNE programme was eliminated last year (Alberta). It wasn't due to cost cutting, it was due to issues.

When student nurses are on the floor for class placements they are covered by the schools insurance. UNEs carried no insurance as they aren't member of the provincial nursing colleges.

Floor nurses in my hospital had been asking for a couple of years how UNEs were insured and all of a sudden management listened.

That's makes sense, I just assumed as ESNs had to register with CRNBC that's how they would be covered for insurance purposes.

That's makes sense, I just assumed as ESNs had to register with CRNBC that's how they would be covered for insurance purposes.

ESNs aren't working a full scope of either RN or LPN practice. There were limits to how many patients they could have, what type of patient, etc. Some units allowed them to work "at their comfort level" which for some meant one patient all summer.

Then we were also told that we couldn't count them as staff because they weren't fully trained. So there were times we were responsible for our patient load and then had to check on the UNEs or do the things their scope wouldn't cover.

In reality, many just made work for the staff. Summer is a nightmare for staffing and if you have to unofficially monitor a UNE/ESN it made it worse for the regular staff.

ESN's do register with CRNBC and are members of BCNU, and part of the collective agreement. They are not considered workload relief, and are allowed up to 50% of the nurses case load. In many BC hospitals ESN's float around the unit helping whomever needs it. They may not be able to do some skills, and work under the CAPE tool. (as an example you are not allowed to admin meds to anyone under 18, cant do trach care, or infuse blood products).

These students are either 3rd or 4th year BSN students. It does not appear that VCH or FA is going to abolish this program anytime soon.

Fiona I think it was just your floor because a lot of my friends got UNE positions this year.

I was recently hired as an ESN for VCH and I start in August. As an ESN I am responsible and accountable for my own practice. As stated above hospitals have different policies regarding what ESNs are allowed to do. In addition, I wouldn't be able to perform a skill I hadn't practiced within my nursing school, either in lab or in clinical. My hiring manager also told me that after I became comfortable on the unit I would be responsible for up to 4 patients (2 patients from 2 different nurses' workload). Interestingly enough, ESNs are expected to work nights which I didn't know going into the interview. I doubt the program will be leaving BC anytime soon.

But who is carrying your ?

CRNBC carries the ESN

is there currently another nursing-related summer job option for student nurses in BC?

Not many job related activities except ESNing , maybe care aide, you have to have your school write a letter for it.

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