Jump to content

Float Pool Vent


Specializes in Med Surg, Perinatal, Endoscopy, IVF Lab.

I love floating.... for the most part. Yes, my experience is more wide and less deep... but I have broader experience then most. Here's my biggest pet peeve. Everywhere you go, the staff treats you like you don't know as much as they do so you "can't handle it". You hear phrases like "oh don't give that patient to her or him, they're float pool".... Sometimes they treat you like you're such an idiot. Can anyone relate?

Pepper The Cat, BSN, RN

Specializes in Gerontology. Has 35 years experience.

We will say don't give so and so to float pool because we know that so and so is a very special snowflake and will not react to a strange face well, and will in fact make that new nurses shift hell. Or it is a difficult family member.

So don't be so quick to judge. If you hear that, ask why?

Edited by Pepper The Cat

Pangea Reunited, ASN, RN

Has 6 years experience.

I try to give nurses who float to our unit the more plum assignment ...not because I think they're stupid, but because they're already in a less familiar enviornment. I want them to be happy, be treated well, and not dread coming back. I've floated to units where I've been purposely given the worst patients and it's NO FUN AT ALL.

Cricket183, BSN, RN

Specializes in Oncology (OCN). Has 16 years experience.

When I worked as the charge nurse on an inpatient oncology unit I almost always assigned the "easier" patients to a nurse who floated to our unit. This was not because I felt that they were incompetent in any way or because I didn't trust them. It is difficult enough to be in an unfamiliar environment without having to deal with especially difficult patients and family members. There were also things specific to our unit that I felt like it was unfair to burden on a float nurse, like patients receiving chemo. In our hospital you have to be certified to administer chemo (usually done by the charge nurse) but you still need to be familiar with what we termed "chemo precautions", ie. handling heavily soiled linens, what to watch for in case of a reaction, and so on. I also didn't want our unit to be "that unit"--every hospital has one--that every nurse dreads floating to because they feel like they are being dumped on.

I love our float pool RNs. Our floor has been so short-handed the last few months that I forget some of them are not regular staff on our unit. But like others said, we try to be nice to the float pool RN's. In an ideal world every nurse has the same skills but in reality some nurses are stronger than others. We keep that in mind when giving patients to float pool RNs who may not know that patient well, or they may be on the brink of going to PICU, or have a difficult family that we know how to handle better than a float nurse would. There are some awesome float pool nurses I work with that I would trust to care for my own child. Other float pool nurses, I just don't know them well enough yet to give them the more complicated patients. Once they prove themselves, they are treated just like one of our regular staff on the unit.

dudette10, MSN, RN

Specializes in Med/Surg, Academics. Has 10 years experience.

You don't get that being float pool in a smaller 300 bed hospital like mine. Everyone knows you and your capabilities, so they pretty much treat you like regular staff, which is nice.


Specializes in Med/Surg, LTACH, LTC, Home Health. Has 35 years experience.

OP, count your blessings! Our facility treats us like we can walk on water and restore sight to the blind. Imagine getting report from 5 different nurses who all say "this is going to be your problem child". They split those patients up on days, but taking one patient from each of the regular staff when they are all giving up their worst patient is a (expletive) nightmare when I come on at night!:devil:


Specializes in Post Anesthesia. Has 30 years experience.

Can you come work for this hospital??!!! I don't think we have one "float nurse" that has stayed in the position for more than 6mos. Keep in mind you are definitely the exception to the norm. Most of the time when someone gets floated to my floor, even if we give them what we consider the "cake" assignment", by last couple hours of the night we are jumping around like a cat covering on a hot tin roof to "fix" all the stuff the float nurse just didn't think to do, or did so wrong, that if the docs round before we fix it, a bomb is going to go off in the unit. In every area of todays acute care hospitals there are so many specialty specific protocals I can't imagine ever floating and feeling like my patients were getting the care they deserve. If you have that kind of skill set and flexability, you deserve a bonus for every shift you work.

RNperdiem, RN

Has 14 years experience.

When I float to Cardiac, they will not give me the newly admitted MI who might need a balloon pump. In SICU, the post-op transplants are probably not on the menu either.

Most nurses are careful who they assign patients to. Unless they know you well, floats tend to get the more generic and stable patients.

Floats are protected where I work, and tend to get the least complex assignments.


Specializes in Med Surg, Perinatal, Endoscopy, IVF Lab.

All I want is to be treated like the professional that I am... like everyone else.... no better, no worse. I certainly don't want to be crapped on with all the "dump" patients... but I also don't want to be treated like an overpaid babysitter either. There are certain floors that we are specifically not to take certain patients as outlined in their policity. We don't take step down pts on cardiac. We don't take chemo pts because we aren't chemo certified. We don't take vented pts on NICU. That's all fine... but everything else I can do. I don't want ONLY the drug babies on NICU or only the MI rule outs on cardiac. I want to be treated like their own staff... as able to do what they do and not looked down on as "just float pool". I don't mind a peppering of high acute with intermediate cares like everyone else :yes:

Been there,done that, ASN, RN

Has 33 years experience.

I have years of float experience and rarely saw that.

If it's everywhere you go, you're going to the wrong places. Have you been in your float position long enough to establish your reputation?

If you actually hear those phrases... it's time to verbalize your experience with that situation and assure them you have the ability to care for that person.


Specializes in SICU. Has 10 years experience.

How funny that you actually want the terrible assignments, I feel that since you are not on the floor that much and do not really know the dynamics of the floor too well, you should be content with an easier assignment.... what would happen if they consistently gave you hard/high accuity patients?