Experienced ED nurses please help me make a decision!

Specialties Emergency


  1. Which nurse residency specialty should I select?

7 members have participated

Specializes in Emergency, ICU.

Hello, all! I'm a new grad (December 2013) and have finally been blessed with a few job offers. On 2/28, I was offered a position in Emory's nurse residency program for the ED. I was very excited and happy since my senior practicum was in the ED. Then, today (3/4) I received another call offering a position in Emory's first cohort for the cardiac cath lab nurse residency.

After the initial excitement of another job offer from a great academic hospital, reality hit. Both are great opportunities. However, I have only had exposure with the ED. I love interacting with the patients in the ED, but I would also enjoy the challenge of the ccl. Being a single mom, I don't know how I would be able to handle the on-call requirement for ccl. I have some family in Atl and could always have a babysitter for on-call days.

It appears that nurses come from the ED and ICU to the CCL. I will eventually go back to school to earn my DNP, so would it be better to get experience in the ED or CCL?

Both positions require a two year contract, so I want to make sure I'm making the best decision. PLEASE HELP ME!!

Specializes in Emergency.

OP -

I don't think you can make a mistake here. As for your DNP, both will offer you excellent experience that will help you tremendously. The ER experience will be more wide ranging in the types of acute issues you will deal with, but the cath lab will give you more indepth detailed knowledge about a specific range of issues (cardiac and comorbidities). Neither will be "better", they will be different experiences that will both allow you to build upon them.

So the real question is how this will work with your family, and how comfortable you feel with the management and coworkers at the two units. I don't think you can make a wrong decision here, as both sound like they have a training program setup to help you get up to speed and grow into your role.

Good luck with whatever you decide.

Specializes in Emergency Nursing.

Congrats on the job offers! Both seems like great opportunities.

I personally love the ED because it's something different everyday. The nurses in our cath lab seem very happy, but it wouldn't be a good fit for me personally. If you could see yourself in that setting, go for it. You also have to take your family in to account. The on call thing might be tough.

So I vote ED, but I'm biased. Seems best for your family situation though....

I am of the mind that it makes more sense to go from generalized to specialized than the reverse... with that being said, I think that the ER will give you so much breadth and diversity that down the road, you will be able to further specialize/ pursue your DNP and feel like you have a very strong background. I think it would be hard to feel the same way if you were to do the reverse, starting in the cath lab. Unless you have a very strong love for cardiac/ cath lab, my vote is for ED all the way. Good luck, and congrats on the 2 great offers!


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