hate nursing home rotations

  1. My daughter started LVN school in August of this year--they have just started clinicals at the nursing homes twice a week and she hates it. She keeps telling me that this is not for her-she can't stand how the residents are treated as far as not cared for. I keep telling her it will get better that this is just part of the rotation but I don't think I am getting thru to her.
    Does anyone out there know something positive to tell her. If she thinks she is unhappy right now will it get better.
    Please help I don't know what to do.
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    About txguardmom

    Joined: Nov '06; Posts: 1

    8 Comments

  3. by   Race Mom
    Your daughter sounds like I did when I started long term care! It was sad and depressing seeing people that had medical situations that won't get any better and the lack of care and compassion from many staff members. I just kept going, one clinical at a time until it was done. Some people love long term care, some people don't. That's ok! For me, it did get better! I now work with people who will go home, who will get better, and I get to be a part of it. It is a lot different than that 1st semester! Let her know that it is very important that she learns all she can, it will help her in the future clinicals and will help her understand the life continuem.
  4. by   Megsd
    Quote from txguardmom
    My daughter started LVN school in August of this year--they have just started clinicals at the nursing homes twice a week and she hates it. She keeps telling me that this is not for her-she can't stand how the residents are treated as far as not cared for. I keep telling her it will get better that this is just part of the rotation but I don't think I am getting thru to her.
    Does anyone out there know something positive to tell her. If she thinks she is unhappy right now will it get better.
    Please help I don't know what to do.
    First of all, your daughter is right: it IS sad. Some nursing homes are better than others, but unfortunately the staffing ratios are generally such that the residents do not get the quality of care we wish they had. I worked as a CNA for about 7 months before starting nursing school and I encountered the same problem and was even more frustrated because I was there, working in the facility, and still couldn't give better care to my residents because of the tremendous workload I was trying to accomplish.

    That said, and being the Pollyanna that I am, I have always looked at my time in a nursing home as a tremendous opportunity for both me and the resident. Your daughter has an opportunity to SIGNIFICANTLY improve the level of care her particular resident receives, at least for the time she is there, and she should feel good about that. I would highly recommend that if she has the time either during or between patient care tasks, that she simply TALK to the residents. Most of them, even if they are somewhat confused, love the attention and the company, and she will be amazed at the multitude of information she learns from them. Ask them about their professions, their grandchildren, their childhood, their spouse...

    I always felt like I was their key to the outside world, and I tried my best to "fill them in" on what was going on "on the outside." Tell them about the weather. If you learn they have been in the area a long time and a famous building burned down, tell them about it, and maybe they have stories of times they went to that building. Tell them a bit about what goes on in your world. Tell them about where you grew up, what your parents do, if you have siblings, what you're learning in school. I took care of a few retired nurses over the years and when I took pharmacology they would make a point of pulling me over when they got their pills and quizzing me on what they were taking.

    The sad reality is that there is not much she personally can do to radically alter the conditions in the entire nursing home. The positive reality is that she can make such a positive influence on the residents in the facility while she is there, and hopefully they will have a positive influence on her as well, if she lets them.

    As far as if her clinical experiences will get better, I'm uncertain where all LVNs go for clinicals, but I have found the hospital setting (depending on the unit) to be a bit better if for no other reason than the people tend to get better and GO HOME. I would just advise her to make the best of the situation and try to focus on the good she is able to do for that resident right then.
  5. by   Kiringat
    I had a bad time of my first clinical as well. I had a patient in very bad shape and spent a good 45 minutes feeding her. When I was done, I was told to "wheel her into the day room and park her in front of the TV." It was the most horrible thing I'd ever had to do and I spent most of the night crying. That the best thing I could do for someone was leave them strapped in a wheelchair and shove them in front of a TV was painful.
    I didn't want to go back the next week, honestly, but I took on the attitude that as a student, I was there to make things better as long as I was there. From then on instead of thinking about how horrible the place was, I asked myself what I could do to help. Just spending 10 or 15 minutes holding someone's hand and/or talking to them was so wonderful and appriciated.
  6. by   Natkat
    Tell her to hang in there. I hated my nursing home clinicals too, but that told me that I now know something I DON'T want to do. To me, that is one of the purposes of clinicals. Besides learning basic skills, it gives you a chance to try out different specialties and find out for sure if that is where you want to be.

    I have ups and downs in clinicals too. Usually I feel pretty stressed out and drained, but I'm philosophical. I feel sad for how patients are treated sometimes, but on the other hand I know I can't save the world. I can only do the very best I can when it's my turn to take care of a patient, so at least for a time they are getting good care. I also am realistic about health care and know that it's not perfect. I've learned to live with that though. Besides, what job is perfect? Every profession has it's good and bad points. There is disappointment and frustration with just about anything.

    I am passionate about medicine and can't imagine being anywhere else. I do this because I love it. I'm not much of a people person, but I am quite surprised at how much compassion and geniune care I have for people who need help. It is endlessly rewarding to know you've made someone feel better.
  7. by   lovingtheunloved
    I'm a CNA in a nursing home and I love it. That said, it definitely ain't for everyone. I'm DREADING my peds rotation. Kids scare the crap out of me. Every day that goes by is one day closer to it being over. Tell her to hang in there!
  8. by   hikernurse
    This may be the only opportunity for your daughter to be able to spend the time giving residents extra time and attention. I didn't like my rotation either, but I liked who I took care of and I liked knowing that on the days I (and other students) were there, there were enough of us to actually spend time listening. I learned a lot from my residents, although I didn't actually have much of an opportunity to use and learn new clinical skills.

    Besides, it did finally end :-). And our next clinicals were better.
  9. by   BeccaznRN
    I don't believe there's one nursing student out there who enjoyed his/her clinical time in a nursing home/subacute care facility. Not only is it very sad like other posters have pointed out, but as a brand new nursing student you are scared to death because you get in there and you realize just how much you DON'T know. Our clinical instructor used to come around to every student and put the pulse ox on us......EVERY SINGLE ONE OF US had a pulse that was over 110 on every single clinical day! It was not fun.

    Tell your daughter to hang in there. It really does get better. Have her get on allnurses also.....we'd love to hear from her on her progress!
  10. by   Roseyposey
    I would gladly trade her my OB/Peds rotation...seriously, though, it is intimidating and heart-wrenching at first. But, it's a good place to begin her clinical rotations because it will be more or less the same patients every week, and she will have the time to get to know many of them. In the hospital rotations, we don't generally see our patients more than one time. The LTC rotation is also a good immersion into doing things many of us were not used to; namely, hygiene on an adult. There are so many small ways to make a big difference, and I hope she makes the most of it.

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