med/surg or tele before ICU?

  1. I am a graduating in may and need to know if it would be much more benificial to work on a tele unit rather than med/surg? I was hired for a position in med/surg at the hospital I have worked for for 6 years. I am also precepting on this unit so it would be an easier transition, but I know on tele I would learn all the cardiac drugs and monitors. I was offered a postion at another local hospital on their tele unit. I don't really want to leave my hospital, but they are not hiring anymore new grads now on tele there. What should I do?
  2. Visit lupe profile page

    About lupe

    Joined: Mar '06; Posts: 4

    9 Comments

  3. by   LadyNASDAQ
    I did 1st year Med Surg and then took a Tele course and then did a year of Tele followed by ICU and CCU courses and have been in ICU/CCU ever since. About 26 out of 28 years in these Critical Care areas but am lucky that I can float in Med Surg and Tele thank goodness because I have!
  4. by   lupe
    Thanks for the reply. Were the courses part of your orientation? Or how did that work?
  5. by   Bronx1560
    I would say I was a med surg nurse for 6 1/2 years before i went to ICU, I also had the opportunity to float everywhere during that time, hell i even did homecare for 2 years.

    Being military now for 2yrs I was able to go to my Critical Care Coure(8A) & thats how I got into the ICU. I will say however, a med surg back ground is helpful & a ICU course is needed before doing hard core ICU.

    I don't like to much new RN grads in ICU because ICU is not easy & learning difficult content while trying to learn basic content is RUFF. In the military it's mandatory that U have 2 yrs of med surg experience.

    But I remember when I was civilain with the nursing shortage, hell they don't care about nothing but your RN degree & butter U up with cash. If it's what U want then I wish U luck, but it will be a ruff ride. Stay strong & & learn all U can. Pt is priority, protect your license & if U don't know something please ask.
    Last edit by Bronx1560 on Apr 15, '07
  6. by   gradcare
    MEd/surg time is an asset. Most patients will have some elements of med/surg problems be they trauma / sepsis (eg co-morbidities, needed surge etc). Also if times are quiet you may be pooled or sent relieving to the med/surg floor. If you don't know how to function there it can be and will be very tough. I presume tele referes to cardiac telemetery? if so cardiac monitor stuff is relativly easy to pick up, time manageing up to 12 pt's (with a team mate) aint so easy. So I think it best to get that sorted first.

    Cheers

    Goodluck
  7. by   nursing 101
    Most mgers will accept a person with tele experience quicker in ICU than med-surge...
  8. by   Pheebz777
    I would start at a Med/surg setting. There are a lot of basics that can be learned in the Med/Surg area. Then if you want to, go get some telemetry experience as well. Maybe a 1 year experience in each department. That's just my .02
  9. by   nyforlove
    Thanks! Good points!
    Quote from LadyNASDAQ
    I did 1st year Med Surg and then took a Tele course and then did a year of Tele followed by ICU and CCU courses and have been in ICU/CCU ever since. About 26 out of 28 years in these Critical Care areas but am lucky that I can float in Med Surg and Tele thank goodness because I have!
  10. by   loriann
    I am on a tele floor and its my first job. In addition to the cardiac patients, we often get med/surg patients with cardiac issues, so we end up doing lots of wound care, have lots of patients with very complicated medical histories...it never gets boring.

    I think you can learn good time management and critical thinking on either a tele floor or med/surg. Tele floors are very fast-paced and we see people coming and going for discharges, procedures, tests, etc. very quickly. Overall, it really depends on what you want to do. I'm glad I want to a tele floor because cardiac care is what I am interested in doing.
  11. by   smileyRn96
    Let me start by saying that I am biased. I did tele, ED then ICU. I could have done med/surg but felt I would learn more on tele. You will see med/surg as well as cardiac pt. You get real good real fast at ekg rhythm interpretation and possibly 12-lead. Also on my tele unit we tended to have more codes then the other units, which is great experience prior to going to an ICU. We also did moderate sedation for bedside cardioversion, and we had stable vent pts. There are a lot of medications you can give on a tele floor that are prohibited from med/surg floors. So all in all I feel if ICU is your ultimate goal and you want to contribute to the ICU right from the get go I vote for TELE:spin:

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