How to get into L&D??!!

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  • Specializes in Med/Surg, OR, HH,Case Management. Has 6 years experience.

hi All,

I have been an RN for 5 1/2 years and have worked in med-surg, clinic, OR, and home health. During nursing school I didn't really want to be a L&D nurse, but I really enjoyed the clinical, more so than anything else. I initially wanted to be a psych nurse, or public health. Somehow I have managed to veer away from those initial dreams. In school I got a second major in Women's Studies, and did a lot of work with local women's shelters, and was trained to be a domestic violence advocate. Perhaps my biological clock is now ticking, but I am really interested in L&D. But how the heck do you get a position in L&D? Will they train me? I see a few positions open, but they all require 1-2 years of L&D experience. I would think my med/surg and OR experience would count, right?

hopefulwhoop

264 Posts

L&D is so hard to get into! It's annoying. They expect you to have 1-2 yrs experience in L&D. However, how are you supposed to get said experience without being hired in L&D??? I know this RN who has been on my floor (M/S) for years. She has been trying to get on the L&D unit at our hospital for years, but they keep telling her she needs more experience.

I think one great way to get into L&D is to know people, honestly. Who you know plays a big role in getting a position in L&D. You have to know the right people to get in.

gonzo1224

47 Posts

Find out who the manager of L&D is, write her a letter, attach your resume, and ask for an appointment to see her. Follow up witha phone call. You have to think outside of the box and get get noticed. Be assertive and get yourself hired!

suanna

1,549 Posts

Specializes in Post Anesthesia. Has 30 years experience.

You could always get pregnant! You'll get into L&D in about 9 mos. Seriously, I applaud your career goals. I am a guy, and due to illness I had to do 2 rotations through L&D. I STILL HAVE NIGHTMARES. I'm supprised you are having so much difficulty. At the hospital I work for L&D positions open up on a regular basis. When we hire from the outside, experience is preferred, but within the hospital we have a union and positions are awarded by seniority (except for highly specialized areas like OR). You may want to look into a unionized hospital in your area where seniority may count for something. If that isn't an option, are you considering part time ond/or off shift positions? Not ideal, but it does get you foot in the door. At least in my area of the country, L&D isn't broadly served at all the hospitals. Many have small L&D units but the bulk of the mothers are seen at one of two bigger medical centers. If a hospital has 40-50 L&D beds the need for experienced staff is less pronounced. There are more senior staff around, so the ability to safely mentor a few nurses new to the field is greatly improved.

LoveANurse09

394 Posts

Specializes in Cardiac.
You could always get pregnant! You'll get into L&D in about 9 mos. Seriously, I applaud your career goals. I am a guy, and due to illness I had to do 2 rotations through L&D. I STILL HAVE NIGHTMARES. I'm supprised you are having so much difficulty. At the hospital I work for L&D positions open up on a regular basis. When we hire from the outside, experience is preferred, but within the hospital we have a union and positions are awarded by seniority (except for highly specialized areas like OR). You may want to look into a unionized hospital in your area where seniority may count for something. If that isn't an option, are you considering part time ond/or off shift positions? Not ideal, but it does get you foot in the door. At least in my area of the country, L&D isn't broadly served at all the hospitals. Many have small L&D units but the bulk of the mothers are seen at one of two bigger medical centers. If a hospital has 40-50 L&D beds the need for experienced staff is less pronounced. There are more senior staff around, so the ability to safely mentor a few nurses new to the field is greatly improved.

Where are you located?

I have no advice. I have been trying to get into L&D for almost 2 years. I'm working towards a doula certification though. Who knows if that will help!

fayardj

6 Posts

Specializes in L&D. Has 4 years experience.

I was a CNA on a L&D unit in nursing school and was hired when I graduated. Some facilities hire if you've been a postpartum nurse for a while.

LoveANurse09

394 Posts

Specializes in Cardiac.
I was a CNA on a L&D unit in nursing school and was hired when I graduated. Some facilities hire if you've been a postpartum nurse for a while.

Yes, I know of a girl who was hired in after she graduated because she worked there as a unit clerk. So basically the only way you stand a chance is if they know you personally. Sorry, I am very annoyed today..