Best Choice for Final Practicum?

  1. Any suggestions on the best area to do a final practicum before graduating? Is doing a year or two of med-surg really as critical as everyone thinks or should I start getting experience in a specialty area that interests me?

    I'm especially interested in psych/mental health, corrections, and Aboriginal nursing. I would like to work for the federal government (Canada) - Health Canada or Corrections Canada upon graduation. Perhaps rural would be a good fit for me?

    Any advice/experiences are much appreciated.
  2. Visit Shawnina profile page

    About Shawnina

    Joined: Sep '06; Posts: 11

    6 Comments

  3. by   -Midget-
    What's Aboriginal Health? Is it similiar to Indian Health Services? Sorry, my post isn't much help...I'm not even a nursing student yet. Just plugging away at my pre-requisets! Good luck!
  4. by   GatorRN
    I, personally, don't think it's "critical" to "pay your dues" in med surg, but many other nurses will tell you it is. I had absolutely no desire to go into med surg after graduating. My interest was ICU and I went straight into MICU, and I've never regretted my decision.

    Doing med surg first will give you a great knowledge base to take with you anywhere you choose to go in nursing. It will also teach you great organization and priority skills like no other floor can. But if the thought of working med surg for even a yr or two is as disenchanting to you as it was to me, I say go for the specialty area that interests you the most.
  5. by   RNinSoCal
    Hi Shawnina,
    If you want to get some med/surg experience AND work with the psychiatric population you could always look for a psych/medical unit. I don't know how Canadian hospitals work but in the US some larger hospitals will have a separate unit for psychiatric patients who require IV medications and invasive treatments. This is for their own safety as they may require more monitoring and a locked unit. Just a suggestion. :spin:
  6. by   Shawnina
    Thanks for the replies so far. I have considered a med/psych unit, I just don't know what my chances would be of ending up there. I don't want to end up on a very "quiet" psych unit.

    Midget - Aboriginal is a term we use in Canada that includes First Nations, Metis, and Inuit. Aboriginal nursing here usually involves working at a remote nursing station providing primary care or working at a reservation providing community health care.
  7. by   -Midget-
    Quote from Shawnina
    Midget - Aboriginal is a term we use in Canada that includes First Nations, Metis, and Inuit. Aboriginal nursing here usually involves working at a remote nursing station providing primary care or working at a reservation providing community health care.
    That's interesting. It souns very similiar to IHS here in the states. Good luck!
  8. by   Camelhappy1
    Wow, a thread I might be able to be at use for..

    Hello fellow Canuck! I am a TOTAL advocate for rural nursing! Let me tell you - I did some nursing in the USA (ICU) and med/surg in a large city before that... rural nursing back in Canada has BY FAR opened my eyes up to being able to handle EVERYTHING. Oh, by the way, I work on a Reserve, so that brings in the same type of population you would like to work with. Lots of overdoses, suicides, assaults, rapes, stabbings - maternity (even though we "don't" deliver... caught one so far).

    I thought I was top of the food chain in the ICU - not so! I have been challenged in ways you would never imagine... you do things you would never imagine. You really have to get creative and resourcful!

    Did I mention there is only 1 RN and 1 LPN? So you BETTER get that IV in cos honey, your it. You have to be able to handle inpatients, ER (busy busy) and any other walk-in that happens to saunter in....

    I thought hard about giving up nursing this year (I have only been an RN for a short time) because I hated nursing. I LOVE my job right now as a rural nurse. I can't wait to go to work everyday/ night. It truly is exciting. My "ah ha moment" was when I was attempting to stabilise a stabbinng victim at 3am with one hand, while the other hand was holding the phone to my ear trying to deal with the family on the other end/ arranging a Medivac. My LPN was with all the other freak who decided to pull out his 2 IVs with his teeth and try to attack the EMS in the hallway and sprayed blood over everyone.

    Psych - LOTS of it. That's what lockdown rooms are for :0)

    Send me a prviate message if you like... I have a great idea for where you could go for your final practicum!

    Chou
    Camel
    Last edit by Camelhappy1 on Sep 19, '06

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