How to get out of Ambulatory and onto the floor?


Hi guys,

I hope this is the right place. I’ve been a long time lurker and now am hoping for some advice.

A little background: Straight out of school a few years ago, I was having a hard time finding a position as a new grad, and started at a private outpatient surgery center. I did pre-op, circulated and PACU. It was a plastics center but we essentially did the same procedure over and over again.

Then, I got really lucky and was able to get into a university hospital in a specialty clinic. It’s very hands off and essentially intake, taking some history, preparing meds, phone triage, scribing, assisting the providers with the occasional sterile/non-sterile procedures.

I have applied for positions on the floor, but because my experience is so limited I have only had two interviews - both for the OR because of my background - but they quickly lost interest when they heard it was not an acute PACU setting and the cases were only under moderate sedation.

In the meantime, I was thinking of getting certified/taking classes to help myself stand out and maybe get some experience. I already have my ACLS, PALS, and a moderate sedation certificate. Initially I was thinking about getting my CORN because it’d be the most applicable to my experience, but was worried that may only limit me to the OR. Then I was thinking if it would be worth it to get certified in med/surg or tele?

Do you have any advice or suggestions on any classes/certifications to help get out of ambulatory? Thank you for your time.

FLMom3, RN

29 Posts

Specializes in PCU, cardiology, oncology. Has 30 years experience.

Wow, most people want to know how to get into ambulatory care from the floor! I guess it depends where you live. In a bigger city, I would think it would be easy to get onto the floor with any experience at all. My hospital has a ton of inpatient jobs posted now. Maybe you should get help with your resume; maybe if you word it right it will sound like the skills will transfer... which I'm sure they will. I don't think a certification is needed just to get a job, but if you're up for it, and your facility will pay for it, go for it. Good luck to ya!

TriciaJ, RN

4,295 Posts

Specializes in Psych, Corrections, Med-Surg, Ambulatory. Has 42 years experience.

A med/surg certificate will likely require you to have worked for a number of years in med/surg before taking the exam. Other specialities have similar requirements. Even if you could get a certificate without experience, it would have minimal value to a recruiter.

I agree with FLMom, it might be a geographical thing. Any chance of moving to where the jobs are? Otherwise, it is also good advice to get some help with your resume. Sometimes it's just a numbers game. You have to keep floating applications. Good luck.