10 major things a new grad should know

Nurses General Nursing


  • Specializes in L&D, Ambulatory Care.

You are reading page 2 of 10 major things a new grad should know


47 Posts

As a former L/D nurse, here's a few items I think are important.

1. Be a sponge and absorb everything! Esp. from the L/D lifers

2. Learn Vag. exams, Get a plastic wall mount model and refer to it often. There's been many an L/D nurse coming out of a room with fingers extended asking"Is this 6or7cm's".

3. Be prepared to be wrong and not know it all, it's OK you're not supposed to.

4. Give thanks often to the ancillary staff, soon with budget cuts they will be gone and you will be doing their job too.

5. Never, ever say the "Q" word openly on L/D.

6. Keep a stretcher by the door of a mom w/ a bad fetal strip

7. Learn to become assertive, not *****y, there's a difference. You'll need it when you're arguing w/ a doc at 3am needing him/her to come in for a pt. you think is going bad.

8. Always be ready to catch, and don't trust the multips. They progress amazingly fast..

9. I agree w/ a prev. post about Internal Pressure cath.'s. They are the only accurate and legal way to chart the intensity of a contraction no matter how "big" they look.

10. Definately caller ID

11. Be wary of Birth Plans, wonderful but usually a C/S waiting to happen

12. Learn to eat on the run and discover just how much your bladder holds.

13. Be ready to hit everyone who says"iI must be so much fun to work Maternity, you get to play with the babies all day long!!"

14. Finally, when you've been doing L/D a while. trust your gut!

live4today, RN

5,099 Posts

Specializes in Community Health Nurse.
Originally posted by mattcastens

1. Being a patient advocate is harder than you might think. Remember to stand your ground and be assertive -- but also remember to allow yourself to learn.

2. Many times, families are harder to deal with than the patient.

3. Nobody wants to be in the hospital -- including those that work there.

4. Label all your IV tubing. When the poo hits the fan, you'll thank me.

5. Don't skimp on the backrubs. It's a wonder health benefit for the patients, it gives you great assessment opportunities, and the patients will love you for it.

6. Appreciate the nursing assistants.

7. Ask for help.

8. Remember the five rights and the location of the drug book.

9. Have all the information available and within reach when you call.

10. Nursing is a lifelong learning experience. If you know it all, you're a terrible nurse.

Hello Melissa, :)

Congrats to you on entering the nursing profession. Matt's advice is 'right-on'! Look, listen, feel, learn, ask questions, remain open to positive criticism, and remember that there is always more than one way to do something. ;)


280 Posts

1. Remember: this may be your 3rd delivery of the day and you won't remember it tomorrow, but this woman will remember it for the rest of her life.

2. Be kind.

3. Attend a doula class, or better yet, work as a doula for as many natural births as you can.

4. Mouth shut, ears open.

5. Practice neonatal resuscitation, stat c/s procedures until you can do it without thinking. It alleviates the stress in a crash and allows you to think.:)

6. Seek out a mentor - one with years of experience who can guide your practice for both low risk and high risk deliveries.

7. Remember, not every birth is high risk. Only about 3% of women worldwide deliver in a high risk tertiary care hospital. It is not necessary to treat each patient as if she were high risk, just be very aware of the ones who ARE high risk.

8. Bring food to share with the other nurses - often!

9. Have your ducks in a row before you call the doctor - they want to know the whole picture. (Even if you say: "get your a$$ in here now!" they still want to know the whole picture.)

10. Stick up for yourself.

Good luck! Enjoy the work.


255 Posts

Originally posted by Furball

9. Don't judge pts, you are not God, you are there to take care of them, give information and support.

Excellent advice! Also some of the hardest to follow.

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