My first job out of nursing school was into an ICU float pool at a large teaching hospital. I received training in SICU, CVICU, Trauma ICU, and Neuro ICU. Two things that have always sparked my interest have been travel nursing and PICU nursing.
As of now, I have a 14 months of ICU experience and am ready to start traveling. Is the ICU experience I currently have enough to apply to PICU travel positions? Or would I need to get a year of PICU experience first?
2 + PICU experience is needed (to travel). Adult ICU experience cannot substitute for pediatric critical care.
Do you have any idea how different they are? Very much so.
Travel nursing expects you to be able to hit the ground running with minimal orientation. The majority of those in a specialty need two years to solidify your practice- perhaps more if you've been spread out between several different icus
Not only are the dosing of medications different in PICU given that you can have all, ages up to 17- skills such as inserting IVs are different in babies than in adults. I would recommend getting a bit more ICU experience before travelling, and having at least 2 years PICU before traveling
"As of now, I have a 14 months of ICU experience and am ready to start traveling." You might feel ready, but speak with traveler recruiters to find out their requirements. I had my first travel job with 20 + years of experience... it'was still a tough gig.
You would not be able to start a new specialty as a traveler. You can't expect the facility to train you. The name of the game as a traveler.. is hit the floor running.
PICU is a specialty like no other- you need solid PICU experience to be competent to care for that patient population.
You need PICU experience for PICU. OUr hospital has a program for Adult ICU to PICU. It involves 3-4 months of preceptorship AND course work focused on the Peds aspect of ICU
PS: There are 1001 ways to be born with a jacked-up heart* and congenital heart defects are the bread and butter of most PICUs.
*personal fave: THREE atria, one ventricle
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