Good Idea or Bad Idea?

  1. I want your guys' opinion on something.

    I've been working in my hospitals 8 bed ICU/CCU since 2-26-02. I transferred over from a 30 bed tele cardiac/resp med surg unit. I have 5 years experience as an RN. Since I am the junior RN on the 7p-7a shift and because my job description say so, I have to go out and work the med/surg units when the census in ICU doesn't require 3 RN's which is most of the time. My question is this:

    I have an interview set up this Friday with the Nursing Recruiter at a larger hospital 35 miles away from me for a 1 day a week position in one of their ICU's. I was thinking that I could get some more critical care exp under my belt plus get to work with Swans and IABP's more often as we rarely see these in the ICU that I (don't) work in now. At my current job, I work three days a week--12 hr shifts. I could swing working a 4th 12 hr shift a week plus I can always use the extra money.

    Do you think that this is a good idea or a bad idea?

    Thanks in advance for your advice!

  2. Visit RNforLongTime profile page

    About RNforLongTime, BSN

    Joined: Mar '01; Posts: 2,730; Likes: 602


    It sounds like a good idea if you can swing that 4th 12 hour shift a week. Is it a per diem position you're interviewing for? Just think about your weekends, as most per diem positions have a weekend component. Do you work every other, or every third weekend now?

    I just hope it doesn't interfere with our Cedar Point trip

  4. by   RNforLongTime
    Right now, I work every other weekend. I think it would probably be a per diem position. I am not sure how this hospital handles per diem staff ie making them sign a contract stating that they'll have to work so many weekends/holidays, etc. I'll ask on Friday for sure. Who knows, if they had a full time position, then maybe if the salary was right, I may leave my current job?
  5. by   Jenny P
    Kelly, if you are made to float out of the unit EVERY time you work these days, you aren't working in ICU! Go to the interview with a list of questions (especially about your exact hours and also orientation). I'm happy you are doing this; my one personal question for you is: Can you stay awake for the drive home after a 12 hour shift?
  6. by   nursegoodguy
    Be Careful about picking up extra shifts for the money... sometimes the more you start making the more you spend and then you financially can't quit the extra day...
  7. by   RNforLongTime
    No, I would be using the extra money for paying off debt. I seriously need to put myself on a strict budget and save some so I can have kids, which I want to do soon.

    When I first moved to where I am at now, I drove back and forth to the city where this hospital is located for a year and a half. I worked 12 hour shifts there and I never had a problem staying awake driving.

    Then again, I was thinking about telling my current employer to KMA(ki$$ my a$$) --I'd have to give 4 weeks notice or 30 days--take a month off (haven't had a "true" vacation in almost 2 years)--as I have 140 hours of PTO accrued and start at this other hospital---if they had a FT opening., in ICU, I don't want to work floors again.

    But, I think that if I did that, I'd be taking a couple dollars an hour pay cut. Then again is a few lousy dollars worth staying at a place where I am not happy?

    And another thing, I did the majority of my clinicals at this hospital so I am familiar with things unless they underwent a massive change in 6 years since I did my clinicals.
    I dunno right now I am so confused.
    Last edit by RNforLongTime on Jun 19, '02
    Originally posted by kaknurse
    Then again is a few lousy dollars worth staying at a place where I am not happy?
    Ahhhhh, that is the million dollar question! Only you can decide that one. I will tell you though, mental health is much more valuable than money!

    Good luck on Friday!

  9. by   RNforLongTime
    Yeah, I'm kinda leaning towards quitting my current job. But I'd have to see if they have any FT availability before I'd quit.
  10. by   fedupnurse
    Definetly ask questions at your interview. Maybe call ahead and see if they have any full or part time positions. I'd ask what the floating policy is, what the nurse to patient ratio REALLY is, length of orientation, that kind of stuff.
    If you aren't happy where you are, leave. Life is way too short to be unhappy. If you are getting floated all the time, you have good reason to be unhappy!
    Good luck! Let us know what happens.
  11. by   GPatty
    I think it sounds like a good idea to me....

  12. by   RNforLongTime
    My biggest concern is that if I stay where I am at then it'll be a while before I have to worry about not having to float to the floors. I'm still young. Heck, they aren't the only game in town. Someone suggested that I need to stay put for at least 6 months. I don't know If I could hold out that long, I may develop an ulcer! Always having to worry about who's watching me and every little thing that I do.
  13. by   RNforLongTime
    An Update...........................

    I went to the interview yesterday at the hospital. It's a 500 bed non-profit community hospital. They do a lot of heart surgeries there. I interviewed with the interim nurse manager of their 30 bed SICU/HU. All I can say is WOW! The technology in place at this hospital is incredible. There are full and part time openings available.

    The two biggest drawbacks are that I'd be taking a 4 dollar an hour cut in pay and I'd have to drive 34 miles one way to work.

    On the plus side---As far as I could tell, the SICU RN's don't float, they wear hospital provided scrubs, the benefits(medical/dental) are superior to what I have now and would cost me about 20 bucks less per paycheck. I'd really get to learn critical care and trauma care as this is a Level II Trauma center. They don't pay a differential for a BSN until you reach a certain step in their career ladder but there is a 7% diff for eves and 12% for nights and all shifts get an extra 35 cents an hour on weekends. I would get an extra 7% for my 5 years experience.

    Of course, I haven't been offered a job yet but from my interview things sounded positive and the nurse manager and clinical nurse specialist were so nice. If I am offered a job, I am tempted to quit my current job and work at the new place full time. I discussed it with my husband and he says that he thinks I am crazy to go back to driving that long distance but he doesn't care what I do as long as I am working.

    I look at it like this. This would be an amazing opportunity to work in a true critical care area and the learning opportunities would be tremendous. Plus there are nurses who work there that I already know from the last place I worked. My gut feeling is that I won't be happy staying where I am at. Even if I'll be making less money and having to drive further, I think that the pro's outweigh the cons. Life's too short to work somewhere where I'll be miserable.

    Thanks to all for the advice!
  14. by   mattsmom81
    Hey, sounds like you've answered your own advice!

    If you want to learn critical care at a busy facility and it feels right to you, go for it! A good critical care internship will be a great experience for you!

    You can go prn or perdiem at your current facility for extra $$, if you take the new job.

    Good luck and let us know how it all turns out.