2 patients/clinicals

  1. Anyone up to 2 patients yet in clinicals? Is it tougher?

    We start passing meds next week so Im predicting things are gonna get a bit more stressful and we'll also get 2 patients.

    Any organization tips? mental or otherwise?

    I tried carrying the clip board around but it got irritating to tote so I switched to a small pocket size note pad.
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    About FNPhopeful

    Joined: Feb '05; Posts: 309; Likes: 10

    13 Comments

  3. by   Achoo!
    It's just a bit more prioritizing. Get your assessments out of the way right away, then you can focus on passing meds, washing up your patient etc. It wasn't as bad as I thought it would be.
  4. by   BonnieSc
    Ask the nurse you're working with what her/his organization system is. You'll learn a lot of different methods that way, if you're working with a new nurse every week.

    I make a little calendar-like thing with a box for each hour and a checklist of things to accomplish for that hour. I put all my patients on one sheet of paper, with a separate "calendar" for each.

    It IS tougher, of course, but it isn't (or doesn't feel like) twice as much work. Try to organize your meds on paper early in the day, so that if any of them have to be given at a certain time, you're not busy with your other patient then.
  5. by   Daytonite
    well, before i ended up having to carry a clip board to accommodate all the junk i had to carry around with me, i used to make "to do" lists on the back on my "brains". i started making these lists of all the things i had to do before i went to work and put them in the order they needed to be done with the least important stuff at the bottom. as i did things i would cross them off the list. in my early days as an rn, these lists helped me learn to organize and prioritize.

    another thing i used to do was make a simple grid with times at the top and patient room number down the side. i put check marks in the grid for those that needed meds or iv piggybacks at the times due. i could see at a glance when i needed to attend to a med.

    organizing and prioritizing is always a work in progress. you get better at it over time, but there is always a curve ball being thrown at you that will force you to tweak the system you already have in place. this is something that takes months and years to master, so don't be discouraged at your first attempts with this if you don't feel you are being successful. time and experience have a lot to contribute to this skill.

    http://www.ehow.com/how_3812_make-list.html - how to make a todo list

    http://www.ehow.com/how_948_manage-time.html - how to manage your time

    http://www.mindtools.com/pages/main/newmn_hte.htm - time management from mind tools

    http://www.time-management-guide.com/prioritizing.html - prioritizing effectively

    http://www.ecomhelp.com/kb/inspirati...g-your-day.htm - prioritizing your day to accomplish more. again, another site for business, but the principles for nursing are there and sound.

    http://www.dkeener.com/keenstuff/priority.html - setting priorities.

    http://www.ehow.com/how_2248_break-p...ion-habit.html - how to break the procrastination habit
  6. by   S.N. Visit
    The first thing I do is look up meds on both (usually my pt's are eating breakfast during this time) Then, I do vitals with assessments , by this time it's time to pass morning meds. After passing meds, I chart my important stuff. Bath time is usually around 10 am, so I get showers/bed baths accomplished & linens changed, do Vitals and then It's time for lunch. Usually at 1 we pass the second round of meds, and do dressing changes or other procedures. It's usually crazy busy if we have a very neady pt. (one that wants head, raised, lowered, then raised, then lowered & the t.v station changed a million times etc.) After adding up my I&0's I chart again, report off to my nurse, whom I've never seen once during the whole day. Charting seems to take me the most time because we have a "Word Nazi", for an instructor. By God, don't say "No drainage or pus noted at wound site", she will immediately correct you and say "It's always excudate", which in my opinion has the same meaning, just different style. Having 2 pts run me ragged some days, I can't imagine when I graduate and have 5-7 pts.
    Last edit by S.N. Visit on Oct 21, '06
  7. by   S.N. Visit
    Daytonite brought up good organizational skills. I sort of use this system already. I have a little pocket book called "RN-Notes," and it has tables, grids to keep pt info seperate as well as assessment skills and reminders. You can write on it with your ball point pen and erase it with an alcohol pad. It's a wonderful little tool. You can find it on amazon, or any book store and it's not expensive at all.
  8. by   Bonny619
    We started with 2 patients our first semester, it gets easier, trust me. Organization is key and planning your time.
  9. by   Lisa CCU RN
    We have two patient's right now and by the time I get back on the floor ( I have surgery observation next week) I think we will be assigned three.

    They didn't play around with us on the floor. during first semester. I think we were passing PO meds the third week and from then on it was everything parenteral except for IV meds and that's only because we didn't learn that till second semester.

    I'm in second semester now and I don't think two or three patients is bad, it's 4, 5, 6, 7, and more patients that are bad!

    I admit I was freaking a little when both of my patients wanted pain meds at the same time and I had to draw it all up, but I got over it.

    Good Luck.
  10. by   luv2shopp85
    You know what? I have 7 months left to go in nursing school and I haven't had 2 patient upuntil one month ago. I've only had just one. But other students have had more than one patient and it seemed I was the only one who hasn't. Before working as a nurse extern I would have freaked out if I had to take care of 2 patients. But now since I'm an aid/nurse extern I'm used to juggling 6-9 patients a day. So when I'm in clinical and am only given one patient I'm kind of bored.
  11. by   Halinja
    Quote from Daytonite

    Another thing I used to do was make a simple grid with times at the top and patient room number down the side. I put check marks in the grid for those that needed meds or IV piggybacks at the times due. I could see at a glance when I needed to attend to a med.
    That's pretty much what I did too. It made a huge difference, I could glance down, see what meds were coming in the next three hours or so and plan other activities accordingly. It made a huge difference from just trying to 'remember' everything. I got the idea from a nurse that had worked that floor for years, and used the same system.
  12. by   locolorenzo22
    We're only given one patient and it does seem kind of boring! My guy had dementia and trying to assess him then find something to do until he went to an activity program was pretty tough! Any ideas?
  13. by   BoonersmomRN
    It all depends on the patient(s). I didnt have a hard time w/ 2 this semester..I even had 3 one day....but I have also had ONE patient who took more time of mine than all 3 of those did combined. It is more prioritizing and more paperwork-- so yes it is more overall but like I said...all depends on who the patients are
  14. by   Fun2, RN, BSN
    Quote from Tanzanite
    Daytonite brought up good organizational skills. I sort of use this system already. I have a little pocket book called "RN-Notes," and it has tables, grids to keep pt info seperate as well as assessment skills and reminders. You can write on it with your ball point pen and erase it with an alcohol pad. It's a wonderful little tool. You can find it on amazon, or any book store and it's not expensive at all.


    I have that book "RN-Notes" as well & I took out the 2 needed 'glossed' pages and hooked them to my lil' spiral pocket-sized notepad. That way, I can have the glossed 'assessment' pages to remember everything by, as well as have regular paper to jot anything else down that I may need to do throughout the day.


    I have a big clipboard 'case' and brought it to my first clinical. I soon realized there's not a whole bunch of room to put a clipboard when the client's belongings, etc is covering the tables. (Also, if the patient is MRSA, etc I don't want to put my clipboard down on something he/she has just touched, then go to the next client's room! ....My lil' spiral's covers are plastic, so I can wipe the covers down.)


    (I don't want the whole book in my pocket because I have my PDA with a med-surg program, etc.)

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