Dealing with sub-standard new grad orientation

  1. <P>So I've been in orientation for&nbsp;my first floor position in med-surg (at a hospital in San Francisco), and I only have 3 days of orientation left before they turn me loose on the patients. My orientation has been quite lacking compared to those of my friends at other hospitals. You only get 5 weeks of orientation as a new grad (experienced RNs get 4, does that make sense?), and there are supposedly classes included with the orientation every Monday, then Tues-Fri on the floor. However, I started in September and the guy from Nursing Education told me they won't have any classes until sometime in 2008!</P>
    <P>I was given a checklist of tasks to be completed during my orientation, but I still haven't done much of them. My nursing school wasn't the best in terms of teaching us skills, or the reason behind why you're supposed to do certain things, so I feel just like I did in my first semester of nursing school, except that now I'm an RN and I still have no idea what I'm doing. </P>
    <P>They expect me to be on my own in just a matter of days and I'm having major anxiety about it. I plan to talk to my preceptor about my feelings tomorrow, but I'm worried that they will just decide to let me go, because 1) nurses are often cancelled at the hospital and 2) we found out on Friday that the parent company will be closing the hospital in 2009 so I imagine they'll start cutting costs now. </P>
    <P>I do have a per diem job I'll be starting probably in 6-8 weeks, but it's in an oupatient clinic and I really want a floor position as well so that I can learn skills and have a better clinical education under my belt. I've been in touch with a couple of recruiters at other hospitals, but they don't have any new grad programs starting for a while, so if I lose my current floor position I'm going to be without income for at least a couple of months (while I wait to start my per diem job). </P>
    <P>Has anyone else had an orientation like this without any classes? How did you manage? I just feel so lost, I don't feel like I've learned much. My friends at other hospitals have had at least 3 mos or more of orientation and here all I get is 5 weeks I don't think it's fair to me or to the patients. I can honestly say that if I were a patient, I would not want me as my nurse.</P>
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    About NTPinky, MSN, RN

    Joined: May '04; Posts: 160; Likes: 27


  3. by   leslie :-D
    before you took this job, did they tell you that orientation would only be 5 weeks?

    i would be very, very careful in going on the floor.
    anxiety is normal for everyone.
    but if you haven't been checked off on many of the tasks, you are jeopardizing your pts as well as your license.

    new grads can get an orientation anywhere from 6-12 wks.
    but as you state, it is the quality of this orientation, that will determine if you are ready.
    i would definitely request add'l time, sharing your concerns with nm, hr.

    best of everything.

  4. by   NTPinky
    At the interview I asked them to tell me about the orientation process. The woman who interviewed me told me there would be classes and a 6-week orientation. However, the first week was just a very broad introduction to the hospital and in my opinion was a total waste of time.

    I was nervous about the short orientation, but it seems that all the Sutter hospitals (at least in the SF Bay Area) operate the same way (4-6 weeks of orientation for med-surg), so I guess I thought it would be ok. I was also desperate for a job because I was looking for several months and this was the only place that actually called me for an interview. I'm not desperate enough to risk losing my license though.

    We'll see what happens after I talk to my preceptor tomorrow. I'm sure I'll be the subject of lots of gossip among the other RNs, but I honestly don't care. I want and need better clinical education.

    Last edit by NTPinky on Oct 21, '07