planning to take the RN course but have no exp in the med field, any advice???

  1. Hi all ,
    I really want to become an Rn since my goal is to work in labor and delivery and from what I have been told only an RN can do so. Problem is I have no exp in the medical field so I am wondering if the course will be tooo hard for me to keep up with?? and If I will have a good chance of employment after graduating. Has anyone else started from scratch like this?? if so please give me some advice!!!!!
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    About chocolategirl

    Joined: Apr '09; Posts: 14
    Childcare provider; from US


  3. by   caliotter3
    You can get experience by obtaining a CNA certificate and working as a CNA. There are some RN programs where getting the CNA certificate is a requirement or where the CNA certificate will gain you points in the application process.
  4. by   billjeff1
    Hello, I am starting from scratch, I start my Accelerated BSN Program in May. I have never worked in the Health field whatsoever. I have taken Pre-requisite courses like A&P1 and 2, Microbiology, etc. I am getting nervous but excited at the start of nursing school. I wish you luck on your future endeavors.
  5. by   Flare
    lots of people start out with absolutely no experience in the medical field. Becoming a CNA is one way of getting some exposure. Another may be to inquire with a local first aid squad and become an EMT. Even volunteering at your local hospital give you a little insight as to how things are run.
  6. by   MikeyBSN
    I would recommend a CNA or EMT course. You could do work as either during nursing school. This both helps you with school and it will look good when applying for a job. You don't want to go to a job interview and have to tell them that you're a new nurse and the only experience you have ever had in health care was during nursing school. This isn't a bar to employment, but it certainly looks better if you have something, anything, in the way of medical/nursing experience.
  7. by   CABG patch kid
    Another word on experience: You may also go straight into nursing school with no prior medical experience and after 1 year of nursing school, get a job as a student nurse technician or extern (there are other names like nurse apprentice, etc.) This position is specifically for the student nurse, so you may do more RN tasks, like starting IVs, doing assessments, giving meds; all with the supervision and guidance of an RN. That way you don't have to waste time getting other certifications prior to school, unless it is absolutely necessary for entrance to the nursing program.

    I worked as a student nurse technician while in school and gained extremely valuable experience. Not only did I get to do all the fun little procedures, like starting IVs, but I also got to see different disease states that I may not have necessarily had an opportunity to see in my clinical rotations at school, simply because I had more exposure to patients. I learned how to do the "CNA" stuff as well, like helping patients eat, helping to clean them up, things like that. Those little things aren't very complicated but its nice to get comfortable with those things before graduation, because a lot of hospitals these days are cutting back on CNAs and more RNs are doing total care.

    If nothing else, you will be fine if you don't work in the medical field at all before graduation, because the nursing program has a certain amount of clinical hours for students to get their feet wet. However, I do recommend that you at least volunteer at a local hospital and shadow a nurse just to see what it is they do, and ask questions. I really had no idea what the heck nurses did before I even got to nursing school, and then really got the full picture when I graduated. Luckily for me, I love it anyway, but you never know until you see it first hand.

    Good luck on your decision!
  8. by   mrscoozy
    i graduated in may '08 with my adn and had zero experience in the medical field. the program i took required we get our cna before entering the nursing program, but i never worked as a cna. actually i was a bartender for many years before i went back to school and that job allowed me to have my days free for school. i work in a hospital now as an rn and it is my very first job in the medical field. you can do it!
  9. by   Coffee Nurse
    I would recommend the nurse shadowing option before signing up even for a CNA certification course. You say you want to work L&D, but have you ever witnessed a birth firsthand? It's a pretty intense and graphic experience, and you don't want to spend money getting certified -- much less going through an entire RN program -- just to discover that watching a birth turns your stomach.

    In addition, shadowing a nurse would give you the opportunity to find out everything that's actually involved in L&D nursing (it's not just "push, push, push" the entire 12 hour shift). And conversely, you may find childbirth to be a miraculous thing to see in person, and to help make happen. In that case, full steam ahead with nursing school!
  10. by   caliotter3
    One of my classmates was accepted to the MSN program before she even completed her BSN and had never worked one day in healthcare. She was continuing in school and avoiding the world of work while living with her parents. You aren't in that category so look at the options presented to you and decide which you would like to pursue and don't worry so much about it. Make sure you focus on school and don't overload yourself with work and school at the same time. You want to be successful as well as experienced.
  11. by   diane227
    Working in a hospital as a CNA will open your eyes to see if it is really what you want to do. Getting a CNA certificate is usually not too hard and the time it takes to get one is fairly short. If your goal is to work in labor and delivery you might want to take a look on this site at the speciality area. In addition, remember that L and D is not always the romantic, healthy baby coming into this world. It is one of the most high risk places to work in terms of liability. Do yourself a favor and get some CNA experience first.
  12. by   Thankful RN,BSN
    I had no medical experience and i did fine in school. I took the CNA course because it was required. But, i never worked as a CNA. You can do it. I wish you the best!