1. I'm wondering from your preceptor/preceptee points of view, what is appropriate during
    this period?
    does preception involve having your own patients by your fifth shift?
    how many of your own patients should you have?
    how do you contend with each preceptor insisting that her/his way is the right way?
    what is an appropriate staff to patient ratio when preception is complete?

    I am precepting at a rural hospital with a vast range of patients 0-100 yrs with every conceivable illness/disease/surgery imaginable. Perhaps there are other questions I should be asking as well. Any input will be appreciated. It's my first job and I'm just not sure what is or is not acceptable practice.
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    About journeyy

    Joined: Feb '01; Posts: 49


  3. by   P_RN
    Fifth shift seems a little soon.

    Did you have some classes beforehand? For example IV therapy, CPR, computer use...?

    What we did was pair the new nurse with "her" preceptor.
    One new nurse/One sharing.

    We were joined-at-the-hip for the entire length of orientation which could be anywhere from 6 weeks to 12 weeks. New/Old shared one position. We worked the same days, same shifts, ate at the same time, and even took breaks at the same time. At 3 weeks- new nurse had 3 patients, 4 weeks-4 patients 5-5 and 6-6.

    After that we (old/new) would split a team of 10 patients. Each of us being responsible for all 10 but working as a team.
    I believe it worked quite well. I precepted 5 new nurses the last year I worked there. 4 are still there and one's husband got a job out of state.

    There is no right and wrong, just variations on a theme. Consistency is the key.
  4. by   kennedyj
    I think this would vary with each nurse and past experience or how comfortable they were after school clinicals if a new nurse. It would also depend on what type of patients (if general med surge - they may be similar to what you have been doing in school and so on). Paperwork will be somewhat different. This is your time to get situated so you shouldn't be stressed or used to lighten the load of the preceptor. When we calculate staffing for the next day we do not include orientees. If our numbers call to call someone in we do, we don't rely on the orientee.
    good luck,
  5. by   Mijourney
    Hi Journeyy. Many of us have experienced what you're going through now. As kennedyj wrote, your nursing education has a lot to do with what you're ready to take on. I would think starting you out with a couple of patients and building up gradually to what is a standard load of patients would help ease you into practicing on your own. You need to discuss how long your preceptorship will be and demand what you need from your training. Best wishes.