Seriously Considering Quitting - page 2

Hi Everyone, I am in my second semester of nursing school and I am seriously thinking about throwing in the towel. This semester our instructors expect us to be able to handle two patients,... Read More

  1. by   Cuddleswithpuddles
    Quote from RKpianoman
    After my second semester, I was able to take care of 1 verrrrry sick ICU patient or 2 other ICU patients with minimal help from my preceptor during my externship. Second semester really started to solidify nursing skill, time management, all of the academic knowledge about disease processes and how body systems work or don't work, and my confidence in my ability to make decisions. Original Poster, you'll be surprised how far you've come when this semester is over! Just keep fighting and you'll find yourself celebrating Christmas in no time!
    Wow, when exactly did your externship occur? Ours was during the 4th semester (last semester of a 2 year ADN program). I was part of the LVN-RN bridge group and was not around for the 2nd semester but I don't think they were given any responsibilities in critical care that early.
  2. by   RKpianoman
    In MS, with traditional ADN and BSN programs, the externship is an optional 2-month long clinical during the summer after either the 2nd or 3rd semester (depending on whether the student starts in the fall or spring). We have a preceptor at arms-length whenever we're doing a new skill or anything with an IV; can't do blood, can't manipulate ET tubes, and there were a few other restrictions that never came up with my patients. There were very few ICU and ER slots at the hospitals, and they usually went to students from just a few particular schools close by that the hospitals were very familiar with.
  3. by   NurseLoveJoy88
    I agree with others that assessments don't have to be done by 0900 in the real world. However, perhaps the instructor is trying to teach you good time management skills. Start your day prioritizing. Do your assessment and vitals first, then meds ( if you can, using the one hour window). Delegate if you have to. Delegation is apart of nursing, so don't be afraid to do so when you are swamped. Hang in there and don't give up!
  4. by   jackometer
    Thank you everyone for the motivation and kind words

    To NurseLoveJoy88, our instructors want us to do everything for our patient this semester. We can ask the other members of the health care team for assistance, but as for delegating... we take over the NA's responsibilities for our patients.

    So the real world isn't like nursing school?
  5. by   jackometer
    Is every nursing program this tough? My school has a reputation for being extremely difficult. I'm wondering if I should just switch to a different program... Or switch to a different career, but still in the medical field...
  6. by   koko2002
    Don't quit. Let them kick you out and try as hard as you can until they do.
  7. by   Hygiene Queen
    Quote from slinkyheadCNA
    just keep in mind when you're out in the workforce you wont be required to do all those things....RNs typically dont do ANY adl's and your charting and assessments can wait. JMO
    The Real World doesn't matter.
    The point is, the OP absolutely must complete these things in clinical.
    Explaining to the instructor, "I didn't do my ADL's because I won't do them in The Real World and I didn't have time" would be the instant kiss-of-death for any student.

    Also, "charting and assessment can wait"...
  8. by   Hygiene Queen
    Quote from Cuddleswithpuddles
    Students have to start somewhere. It would be unreasonable to expect a student to start with three patients right away, just as it would be unreasonable to hand you three total care patients on your first clinical day as a student CNA. The goal is to progress students to a full load by the end of nursing school.

    Charting can wait but assessments are top priority. There is very little you can do prudently without first taking a look at your patient, whether it is give food, get out of bed, give meds or call the doctor.
    I did not see your post before I posted my response. I believe you said this far better than I could.
  9. by   tokyoROSE
    Don't quit! It will get better I promise. What is your instructor's rational of going over background and priorities for over an hour? That is really not important at 7am. Report on two pts should take 10 minutes tops. It seems like your instructor is setting you up to fail... She should let you look at charts, get report, do vitals, BGs and assessments first thing. With two patients, you can easily chart those assessments before 9:00 o'clock meds. After that is a better time for background and priorities. Have you tried discussing how you feel with your instructor? My clinical group & I had some concerns about our arrangement one semester and the instructor totally understood where we were coming from and instituted some changes.
    Reading is FUNdamental....i always say.

    My point was that OP shouldn't quit because of the difficulty he/she is experiencing in NS. It gets better. So does matter if the real world is different. OP will get better at it with time and the assurance that the clock will not be ticking once they graduate.
  11. by   Cuddleswithpuddles
    Quote from jackometer
    Is every nursing program this tough? My school has a reputation for being extremely difficult. I'm wondering if I should just switch to a different program... Or switch to a different career, but still in the medical field...
    Yes and no.

    Nursing school is tough, period. But the culture the professors cultivate matters in how one perceives the challenges. There are schools that have very cut-throat, uncaring environments that conveys the message that mistakes and delays are never acceptable. They're the kind of schools where "I don't know" is always the wrong answer and that nursing students are disposable and will be dropped at the smallest infraction. There are a wonderful few that challenge students but empower them in a positive way. I am so happy I had the latter and not the former.

    There is a difference between nursing school and real life. Don't let your school experience sour your view on nursing in general. Take a deep breath and open up to the idea that your professors are challenging you to prepare you as a future nurse.

    Good luck and let us know how things turn out!
  12. by   NCRNMDM
    We are doing clinicals on a surgical floor, and we do focused assessments. We have to document a full assessment, but we don't do a formal and complex assessment. In general, I ask my patients their name, where they are, and what date it is (then I can chart that they are A&O x 3, and I've satisfied the neuro assessment). I may check the pupils, but if they are oriented, and aren't complaining of anything neuro-related, I generally skip that. Next, I listen to breath sounds in the front and back. After I've done this, I move on to heart sounds. I assess heart sounds, rate, rhythm, and apical pulse. Next, I move to the abdomen, I do a general survey of the abdomen simply by looking at it. I note if it appears distended, normal, etc. Next, I listen for bowel sounds, and note them. Finally, I palpate the abdomen for pain (unless my patient has had an abdominal surgery). I then move on to the lower extremities. I check pulses in the feet, capillary refill in the toe nail, and assess the warmth of the skin. Next, I assess the capillary refill of the fingernails, the quality of the radial pulses, and the warmth of the skin in the upper extremities. I then ask the patient if they are having pain, when their last bowel movement was, whether they are having problems urinating, and when the last time the urinated was, and I take vitals if it is time for vitals to be taken. If the patient has a catheter, I don't ask any questions about urination. Instead, I assess the catheter site to make sure it doesn't look infected, and I check to see how much urine is in the collection bag. If the patient has any drains (like JPs, hemovacs, or chest tubes) I assess the insertion site, and the amount, color, and characteristics of the drainage. If the patient has an NG, I do the same. If I haven't seen the patient ambulate yet, I have them squeeze my hands and push against my hands with their feet. I use this information to chart about their musculoskeletal system. If I've seen the patient ambulate, or helped them ambulate, prior to my assessment, I use this information to chart about the musculoskeletal system. By doing the assessment this way, I get all my information without wasting 45 minutes doing a complete head to toe.
  13. by   NightOwlForever
    Keep it up! Don't quit!