Need words of encouragment


I recently took my first hospital job. I have 10 months of experience in a SNF. We did some more acute things like TPN and such. I took this job in the float pool thinking that I would be oriented for six weeks with a preceptor on a general surgery floor. Boy was I wrong. I have five weeks orientation a new floor every single night with a new person that 9 times out of 10 has no idea I am even coming. I am so deflated. I feel like a moron. I know nothing about IV pumps (we had dial flows where I worked), PCA's, epidurals and pretty much everthing there is. I have never given IV meds so that has been a learning curve to know what needs to be diluted and how to give it. I have never done computer documentation so I am having to learn that as well. Tonight I am on tele and again I have never worked tele so I feel so lost. I am trying to be independent and took two patients on my own. One patient has bicarb, ns and a PCA running and I felt like a complete moron because I could not get the tubing untangled and figured out what was going where. I feel so much pressure to know what I am doing yet I don't. I was basically told tonight that I can pretty much not plan on coming back because I am not ACLS and do not have tele experience. SO WHY AM I HERE!!!!! I don't pretend to know everything and I ALWAYS make it clear what my background is and what kind of help I am going to need. I just feel super deflated, worn and stupid. I know this is normal but I really just need someone to tell me I am trying 200% and I am trying to learn it all in a short amount of time and that this is NOT my fault just a terrible idea on the part of this hospitals managment to put me in this situation. I kind of feel betrayed. I go home every morning wanting to cry. I know I am rambling but I am SO upset. Thanks for listening...... Praying it gets better


25 Posts

It's not your fault. You are right, it is an oversight. I am a new nurse and can empathize with your situation. I remind myself (when listing my deficiencies) to also note what I have learned and where I am improving.

I think the seemingly "mindless machine" is all too often the way of things in hospitals and LTCs... I am also surprised by it. I never imagined it.

I guess it's part and parcel of the job. We have to work around it. ...or find another position, some place where the grass is greener... I think there really are some places...but that they are few and far between.

I also think that the better jobs will (hopefully) come with increased experience.

Good luck. Give yourself credit.

Maybe talk with your boss, too.

Specializes in Emergency, Trauma, Critical Care. Has 14 years experience.

It's not you, you are being set up in an environment for failure.

On a tele floor, they should only have people who have taken an arrhythmia course taking those patients.

They have you as float pool without the necessary training. Honestly, only nurses with previous hospital experience, preferably 2 or more years, should be in this float pool.

I would talk to HR and the director. Explain the liability risk that you are all at for having you on floors you are not prepared for. I would inquire to see if they have a dedicated position in a general med-surg floor for you to get your bearings, and then, when you feel more comfortable provide you with the necessary training for other floors including tele so that then you may do the float pool.


39 Posts

Specializes in ICU Telemetry Med/Surg. Has 22 years experience.

You are not stupid just not trained for the assignment On a tele floor I worked on we took the 6 week ICU training class Perhaps float pool is not for you just yet I have done it and it is HARD Keep your chin up tell someone in command of your issues request training All of us have felt this way I remember the first time someone asked for a patients nurse and it was ME boy was I scared Best of Luck :nurse::heartbeat

kool-aide, RN

594 Posts

Specializes in Cardiac. Has 5 years experience.

You need more clinical education and mentoring/preceptorship. Good luck, I'm sure you'll be great once you get some more practice, but it takes awhile to get comfortable while working in a hospital float pool.


63 Posts

Specializes in med/surg, cardiology, advanced care. Has 20 years experience.

Something's not right here. Your first hospital job, did they not provide a general orientation with equipment? Most places require a skills checklist to identify areas where further training is needed. Do yourself a favor and speak to someone ASAP about your concerns and ask to be assigned to areas where you have the knowledge and skills to be safe until you can get the training and experience you need. If there is no nurse manager in charge of the float pool then nursing administration. Staying silent will only add to anxiety/frustration and increase stress. I don't mean to sound harsh but how can you be expected to work in all areas without basic knowledge (IV pumps)? It is never stupid to ask questions, what you don't know can be dangerous. For your sake (and your pts), speak up NOW.

Specializes in ED, Informatics, Clinical Analyst. Has 14 years experience.

Float pool is probably the wrong place to be if you've never worked in a hospital. You could try to work something out with HR. Maybe they have a position elsewhere or can at least let you orient with the same people.


214 Posts

Specializes in Ambulatory Surgery, PACU,SICU.

See if HR will place you on a floor so you can work for a while ang get used to the hospital more, usually float staff has more experience and where I work, they have to have ICU experience.

lcjRN, BSN, RN

10 Posts

Specializes in Ortho-Trauma, Neuro Critical Care. Has 4 years experience.

I agree with most of the above posters. It was irresponsible of them to hire a relatively untrained nurse in a float pool. Talk to your manager, and see if they can put you on one floor for at least six months so you can get your bearing. If they won't, look for work elsewhere with a more responsible employer.