Your Duties - page 3

I'm starting my nursing degree now. I'm in my first year of clinicals, but have had numerous years in the healthcare profession. At our school, we have to learn Bedbath, Bedpan, Enema's, cath's,... Read More

  1. by   Drewsky
    Hi, I havent been a nurse all that long, going on 3 years and they have all been Labor and Delivery. (Which is what I have chosen to do.)

    I just have a few comments...

    First and foremost...

    Dont do M/S if you dont want to do that line of nursing. All of these comments about you should do M/S for a year, or it should be mandatory, etc. are all old thought. Seriously. If you have passed your boards, I dont recommend it if you dont plan on working in it. Start where you want to work, and excel in it. I am in the military and have seen many good nurses leave the military because they are forced to work areas that they never wanted to work in. I have seen good nurses leave nursing for the same reason. In nursing you have to work where your interests and your heart tell you, otherwise you will be burned up by continous work you dont want to do, and then have to listen to all the whining and complaining on the floor from the other people that dont want to be there and how they dont like their schedules, etc. etc. It can bring you down if you dont want to work there. Work where you want to work and become everything you can in that field of nursing. Most larger hospitals today will hire new grads and train you to that speciality. Especially with the shortage of nursing. Just be ready for the on slaught of training and responsibility you will have.


    I cant imagine a nursing school being called a nursing school without teaching those basic nursing skills. But hey, who knows now a days. I think whats important when using those skills is not being the best in doing them, but assessing the interventions that you do and how it affects the pt. Knowing when you need to place a foley, and what systemic effects will take place when you place the foley. How will it affect the pt? How hands on skills are taught here, see one, do one, teach one. Then you are considered an expert. But knowing how to critically think and being able to assess, thats the key.

    Good luck!

  2. by   NurseTami
    Not to disagree or be disagreeable, I do believe that jpruitt should expect that some nursing experience will be necessary before being given a position as a discharge planner.

    And where do you suppose these discharge planners help discharge patients from? How will you know what their needs will be at home if you DON'T have some nursing experience?

    I work on a busy m/s unit, with 12 years previous experience in LTC. I would surely need more experience before I would feel comfortable with discharge planning, at least on the hospital end of the spectrum.

    Just my humble opinion.
  3. by   NurseTami
    Oh yeah, I forgot.
    They forgot to teach me that cleaning up bodily substances, bedpans and bed baths etc. were the aides job. I have never deferred these tasks to an aide if I were there and available. The aides remember this and tend to be very helpful to those who do not feel they are above these tasks.
    They are not very helpful to those who feel they are.
  4. by   KC CHICK
    jfpruitt, have any of these other students that work as CNA's ever followed an RN on their floor to see HOW MUCH THE RN ACTUALLY HAS TO DO??? Yes, your friends may be getting a lot of work delegated to them, but, have they actually seen the work load that the RN's have?? Nurses have to juggle pt. schedules, give meds, and document, document, document....among other things. Not to mention admitting and discharging pts and pt teaching.
    The CNA's are there for a help the nurses. Have you been to clinicals yet....if so, what kind of work load do the RN's have in those facilities? Keep in mind that legally, the RN's license -and a$$- is ultimately on the line when it comes to patient care. They are held responsible if something goes wrong.

    I know....I have a lot of questions for you.... Maybe you guys just don't realize HOW MUCH the nurses have on their plates. After all, you are in your 1st semester of your 1st year of nursing'll understand soon enough, I guess.
    Last edit by KC CHICK on Oct 5, '01
  5. by   canoehead
    In the hospitals with the best teamwork it's you find it, you clean it, although of course if it's more than a stain usually two people work together, gets it over with faster.
  6. by   frustratedRN
    "They get the dirty work, while the RN's give them orders"

    just wondering which part of our glamorous job
    not considered dirty work that they seem to be wanting.

    is it the respect we get from our patients, the administartion, patients and the cna's?

    is it all the fun we have on the computer?

    is it being responsible for everyones actions?

    is it administering medications or treatments?

    we work at a dirty job...its ALL dirty work. we ALL know that going in.
    what do the initials in CNA stand for?
    last i heard it was
    certified NURSING ASSISTANT...with the emphasis on assistant.
    im not saying that this gives nursing the right to treat cnas like slaves or subhuman but of course the RN is going to give orders.
    thats what we are SUPPOSED to do.
    any cna who resents a nurse telling her (or him) what they need to do should either look for another line of work or better yet go to school and be a part of the glamour set.
  7. by   jfpruitt
    Well, I think you all have made very good points and observations. That's why I wanted to ask b/c I had never heard such nonsense before. I didnt think most RN's acted this way. Maybe its the hospital these people are working at. B/c when we had clinicals last week, I noticed alot of the RN's standing around while the CNA's were in the rooms with the patients. I was surprised at this too and then after reading this board, I know the real truth.
  8. by   kimberle
    I was a CNA for 10 years, and now I've been an RN for 10 years. I know the assistants I work with still don't quite understand why I may be sitting at the desk while they are answering lights sometimes. I am very conscientious and hard working. Just today, 2 of us had to change a man's bed 6 times - a quad with bowel prep, help a seizing pt. with, assist with another in respiratory failure, set up a "difficult" ALS pt. to use his computer, pass meds, do assessments, assist with transfer to CT of vent pt., and more. Then I had to sit to call the doctors with labs, call a family member to discuss discharge planning, and then review charts, I&O patterns, look up an antibiotic panel, review the seizure documentation for the last month on the pt. who seized, call pharmacy to review some possible med. interactions on a new drug order, put in some maintenance requests for equipment failures. ( On our unit RNs also are the ward secretaries. ) So when I'm sitting, I'm just not sitting.. We just try to work as a team, and keep each other informed of what is going on, and do the best we can do.
  9. by   P_RN
    1. I think your classmates/friends who say their school does not teach the basics.....are probably pulling your chain.

    2. An RN can do ANYTHING on the floor....meds, treatments, mopping, secretary......A CNA cannot. Therein you get a skewed perception of what the RN "should do."

    3. Just go to school, learn EVERYTHING you can, both in class and outside research.

    4. Good luck. I'm sure you will do fine. And being from SSA, you are going to have an advantage in seeing HOW folks get to the point where they NEED SSD and SSI.

  10. by   jfpruitt
    Yes, if anything, working for SSA has certainly taught me communication skills and working with the disabled.
  11. by   nur20
  12. by   ICUBecky
    i agree with Drewsky... the thought that "everyone should work on a M/S floor to get experience" is old school. gosh...i started out in critical care and i've had plenty of experience cleaning up spitters and shitters, turners and burners, placing foleys, starting IVs...everything that floor nurses do. but, on top of all of this i have become proficient in reading swan ganz catheters, balloon pumps, 12 lead EKGs and all the other fun technical things that you get in critical care...that aren't learned on the M/S floors. i started out in critical care, b/c that's what I WANTED. i know i would never have been happy on a floor. i dreaded going to clinicals during my year of med-surg in college, how would i have gone to work 40 hours a week. yuck!! my advice for anyone new to nursing: do what you want to do...don't go into M/S floor nursing just b/c your professors or more experienced nurses think that you should!

    that's all i have to say!
  13. by   jfpruitt
    Hey thanks for the advice folks, another question I have is whether or not I'm going to be prepared when I do graduate. Our teachers are the greatest, however, our clinicals are in the evening and most of the good stuff happens days. I'm scared I'll get out in the real world and I won't know how to do a darn thing. Any of you ever experience this?? And if so, how did you cope?