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Making the switch!

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ValGirlRN ValGirlRN (New) New

Specializes in Emergency. Has 5 years experience.

I have wanted to work ONC since before nursing school - I knew though that as a new grad it wasn't something that I should do, and I wanted to get a solid knowledge base of nursing and disease processes first. That being said, I've now been a nurse for 5 years - I have worked MS/Tele and now ER for the last 4 years. I am finally ready to take a leap and try and break into ONC nursing - I am however very burned out on ER and the hospital in general. MD Anderson Cancer Center has an outpatient position open in our community and I've been watching their careers website for months waiting for an opening... well I applied and got the call for an interview right away - I am SUPER excited! I'm certain if this job is for me that all will go as it should. ... I guess I said all of that just to ask what I should I be expecting making this type of jump from ER to outpatient Chemo - has anyone made this particular transition and what was it like? I know giving up night shifts will be easy and leaving the hospital will be easy for me - but as far as ONC goes - I'm just wondering if I'll be feeling like a new grad again? Are there any resources or books you could recommend that will help me not be a complete novice? I really want this job - and interview tips since I don't have ONC experience? Thanks in advance!

OCNRN63, RN

Specializes in Oncology; medical specialty website.

I made that transition. One thing I did was take the Chemotherapy/Biotherapy course so I could get my chemo provider card. I wouldn't suggest doing that now, because they have changed how the course is taught (all online now), so you'd be better off waiting until your employer wants you to take it.

Join Oncology Nurses Ass. http://www.ons.org You'll get discounts on online courses, literature, etc.

Get the Core Curriculum for Oncology Nurses and study it. It will help bring you up to speed on diseases, treatment regimens, etc.

Take advantage of the courses ONS has. I took the course on breast cancer, GI, lung. Even though many things didn't make sense initially, they helped down the road as I got experience working with patients.

You probably will feel like a new grad again; I know I did. That's OK. Remind yourself that you are learning. As an ED nurse, you will have skills to bring to the table.

Good luck.

OCN63 took the words right out of my mouth! My advice would be just what she suggested. Totally different from working inpatient, but I enjoyed it. Hope you get the job!

OCNRN63, RN

Specializes in Oncology; medical specialty website.

​I forgot to include that when you join ONS, find the local ONS chapter in your area and join it. It's a great way to learn and network.

ValGirlRN

Specializes in Emergency. Has 5 years experience.

Thanks! I think the interview went very well - I should find out soon! I will follow your advice! THANKS!

OCNRN63, RN

Specializes in Oncology; medical specialty website.

Thanks! I think the interview went very well - I should find out soon! I will follow your advice! THANKS!

Best wishes. I hope it works out your way.

iluvivt, BSN, RN

Specializes in Infusion Nursing, Home Health Infusion. Has 32 years experience.

Please get a good IV therapy book as well and brush up on all types of blood products and their correct administration as well as possible reactions.

I am a new grad RN and I just accepted a position at a medical oncology unit. I'm super excited about it and so happy I found this thread. I will definitely follow the great advice given here! And good luck ValGirlRN I hope it works out for you!