Originally posted by EC1234
Well, I think in Med-Surg you're guaranteed to be on your feet almost everyday you come in to work. But in the ICU you may or may not depending on your pt workload. I did a year of precepting in the ICU and from what I've witnessed, yeah there were some nurses who didn't get the luck of the draw and ended up w/ "heavy" pts, but for the most part nurses were sitting around chatting and monitoring at the nurses station (in addition to giving meds, turning pts, documenting, but they only have 2 pts!). I am a new grad and started in Tele, and let me tell you, I am getting a lot of experience here! It's a great place to start!
I will reiterate what I said before, ICU is physically demanding. So is M/S...so is every unit in a hospital. Nursing is a physically demanding field.
Maybe once every three months we will have a decrease in patient load and have one of those days that you can sit around. Being that you were doing an internship I am assuming you weren't there full time to really witness what happens day to day in the unit.
It's not just "heavy patients" its hemodynamically unstable patients, its train wrecks that you get from the floor without even a report being called, its patients that roll up to the unit from the ER coding, maxed out on pressors, bleeding from every oriface saturating the bed, families that don't understand why resucitating grandma for another 50 minutes is futile when you have been doing it the last hour, it is anticipating what is going to happen next, its the floor nurses giving you a hard time bc they are getting an admit and refusing to take report ignorant to the fact that there is a code waiting to come down, you run in the ICU....you are keeping people alive .... and that doesn't involve much sitting around chatting turning your patients q2hr.
Before you knock it and say something ignorant like....they only have two patients why don't you come down to the ICU and work as a nurse and see what it is reallly like....
It is things like q5 min vitals, titrating 8 different drips, swan numbers q1hr, abgs q4 or even more often sometimes, labs anywhere from q2-q12, running a balloon pump that is keeping someone's heart pumping, running cvvh, etc...