Jump to content

new circulator, but want to scrub too

Operating Room   (621 Views | 3 Replies)

263 Profile Views; 9 Posts

Hey Guys, I am graduating nursing school, come completion of my clinical capstone (which is in the operating room as a circulator). I have accepted a job at mayo clinic as a circulator, and was a bit dismayed to learn that (as previously told) that nurses do not first assist and scrub. I learned to scrub at my first job in the operating room as a sort of multipurpose operating room technician, so I am a little sad that I won't get to scrub at all. Overall, I feel pretty confident in my choice I just need some affirmation. Do any circulators not scrub at all, and do you still like it? I have always loved the operating room, and hope to eventually swing back into the ICU world and go back to anesthesia school, but I want to spend some time in the operating room to reward myself for 4 years of slinging bedpans (totally kidding, god bless floor nurses). What is your opinion of nurses not scrubbing? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rose_Queen has 15 years experience as a BSN, MSN, RN and specializes in OR, education.

9 Followers; 4 Articles; 9,269 Posts; 107,747 Profile Views

A lot of what influences whether OR nurses learn to scrub or not is the staffing matrix at the facility. My facility is closely affiliated with several surgical technologist programs. Our staffing matrix is approximately 35% RN and 65% ST, so almost all scrubbing is done by STs and RNs circulate. The few exceptions are those RNs who were previously STs in the same OR and our heart team members, where some of the RNs are taught the second assistant role. As a member of the heart team, I was taught to second assist but found it both intimidating and physically taxing. I much prefer circulating myself.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

FurBabyMom has 8 years experience as a MSN, RN.

1 Follower; 1 Article; 799 Posts; 25,311 Profile Views

I have to agree it depends on facility and staffing needs. In general, surgical techs are "easier" to find and hire than OR Nurses.

I was taught to scrub in my hospital's new to OR program. Historically, our staffing has been about or greater than 50% RN.  I personally love scrubbing. Getting to see and touch things so closely - that's so cool to me.  In general, most of the time, neither RNs nor STs function as a first assist in our ORs - we have surgical residents. When the residents are less experienced, they are their attending's assist, but often towards the end of residency their attending is their assist. We have a few providers who use an NP or PA as a first assist, some of the time, but not consistently. 

Our staffing has shifted some, with STs easier to hire than RNs, RNs are overall scrubbing a bit less (but not never by any means).  I think that RNs scrubbing adds flexibility that you do not have when your RN staff does not scrub or is not expected to scrub.  There are more options to move staff around if necessary than there are if half your staff flatly doesn't scrub.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

9 Posts; 263 Profile Views

Thanks you guys - sorry for the delay. I appreciate the feedback. And you never know what facilities will do in 10 years with the everchanging guidelines. I think I do have an idealistic image of scrubbing in my head, and I forget just how stressful scrubbing can be. Haha. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
×

This site uses cookies. By using this site, you consent to the placement of these cookies. Read our Privacy, Cookies, and Terms of Service Policies to learn more.