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Is starting off LTC a bad thing?


Specializes in New Nurse. Has 2 years experience.

Hello everyone,

I recently graduated in May and (kind of) reluctantly took a position as an RN at the LTC facility I was working at as an aide. I never heard anything back from the two local hospitals and wanted to start working ASAP. I don't mind my job, I get along with my co-workers, I already know the residents, and it's not super stressful - but I know LTC isn't what I want to do. I'm worried I won't be able to get hired in at hospitals in the future if I only have LTC experience; my facility has a handful of skilled residents but we've never had things like trachs, vents, PEG tubes, etc. just the occasional IV. I've heard several times that LTC nurses have an awful time going from LTC to acute care 😕 Have any of you gone from LTC to acute care?


Davey Do

Specializes in around 25 years psych, 10 years medical. Has 42 years experience.

In my experience, Flashsomefang, the nurses I worked with who had started or just came from LTC to work geriatric psych were Cracker Jack.

Generally speaking, I believe LTC nurses have a well-rounded base of experience and are very good at time management.

Good luck to you!

I went from LTC to tele. It's different, yet doable. It's like everything else in nursing, you learned it in school and probably haven't used it for a while but it'll come back to you once you start doing it on a regular basis. Use your orientation time wisely to learn all you can and utilize your coworkers as resources. Pick their brains and round with the doctors while orienting. How long is your orientation?


Specializes in ED, med-surg, peri op. Has 4 years experience.

It’s a myth!! people change speciality’s all the time. You don’t have to start in a hospital. I work in ED and there are quite a few RN who got a job there with only LTC experience.

you have a job, you are getting experience, sound like you are in a supportive environment. That’s much better than waiting around for months for a hospital job.

I just started out in acute care after 3 years as a nurse in LTC/skilled facility. I was nervous about it but now after 3 months in I feel like my experience was enough for me to succeed in an acute environment. Actually, I used many skills in LTC that I’m not doing in the hospital. Like IV starts, PICC pulling/dressing changing/blood drawing, because we are supposed to call the IV team for that. LTC is great experience for time management and learning to deal with things yourself; there’s no RTs, lift team, STAT team, or doctors around at all times.

I did have to apply to several jobs and go to a few interviews before I got hired, because managers did look at my history in subacute as less than optimal. Just be confident about your experience and tell them you are looking to grow and get new experiences.

Also, in the hospital setting you will have plenty of elderly dementia patients needing your expertise from LTC. 🙂

Emergent, RN

Specializes in ER. Has 28 years experience.

I started in LTC and went on into several different areas of hospital nursing.

Yes, you will be able to make the transition, especially if you have patients receiving skilled care. It’s important to capture what you do in your resume.