Is working in the NICU a good idea for me, as a person with mild cerebral palsy? - page 2

I will be applying to an adn nursing program next year and am looking at possibly working in the NICU because it's not as physically demanding. It's important that it's not so physically demanding as... Read More

  1. by   bella201
    ** Does anyone have other suggestions as to specialties that might be a good fit for me? I have been considering telephone triage nursing and school nursing but I really would like to work in a specialty that is hospital based; especially to gain experience as I don't think I would be hired to do telephone triage and school nursing without having hospital experience and I want to have that experience to a become better nurse for my patients and better serve them . What do you guys think?
  2. by   MistyM
    No problem!

    Do you have day surgical wards? Patients come
    In for assessment pre surgery and then off to theatres. Either back to the day unit for some obs
    And a wee before home or go to an overnight ward?
  3. by   nocturnalnurse
    you'd have to go to quite a bit bigger hospital, but some of them have "step down" nurseries...the babies aren't QUITE as sick, they don't respond to deliveries so no running to that STAT c-section, and most of them are smaller than normal newborn/NICU and in one room or a close-proximity private room situation. otherwise, you could get a job at a clinic that specializes in perinatology or neonatology if you are interested in babies and you find the hospital setting isn't quite the right fit.
  4. by   shermrn
    I have never worked in the OR and maybe someone who has can chime in here, but would a "surgery tech" type of position work out for you? It sounds lke your only deficit is in the lower extremities and you are able to stand without any difficulty so maybe this is something to look into. I'm assuming that most of the work is standing in pretty much one spot while actually working on the case, I really don't know but might be worth looking into. Also maybe respiratory therapy or psych nursing would be good fits for you.

    On the NICU subject, the one I work in hires new grads all the time, four year of course. We also don't all go to deliveries or on transport, those are choices for us if we want to be on those specific teams or not. Also consider that there are level 2 and level 3 patients in the NICU, level 2 being the more stable. As far as running to a bedside, our NICU generally assigns nurses to patients that are within close proximity so I'm not sure getting to the bedside in time would be a problem for you. It all dependes on the layout of the specific unit you work on. Finally, I would think that in your case assignments could be grouped so that your not having to run all over the place.

    There are so many opportunities in nursing and health care that I want to encourage you to check them all out. You could also get your nursing degree and a degree in health informatics, or what ever those people who manage all the computer stuff do. Just some food for thought.
  5. by   bella201
    Hey nocturnalnurse are "step down" nurseries the same as Well-Baby nursuries? Is there a difference? When applying for a job; are "step down" nurseries usually specified in the job description or do I have to ask around?

    ** I didn't think that such a position like "step down" nursery existed; where I wouldn't have to respond to deliveries and the babies would be at close proximity. This would work out pretty well for me. It would be great if I could find a position in a "step down" nursery once I graduate. Is it common for "step down" nuseries to hire new grads just out of nursing school?
  6. by   bella201
    Hey Shermrn; I also was thinking about having my assignments grouped so I wouldn't have to run all over the place.

    ** This puts me at ease since I've been told otherwise; that I wouldn't have a say in my assignments. Come to think of it; actually it would be something necessary that would have to be done to accommodate my disability and also to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. It's within my right. I don't know why i was so worried about that!!
  7. by   NicuGal
    Actually if you can't perform the expected duties, and it includes going to deliveries and having to take appropriate assignments, then I believe it is not covered under these. This is something you would have to discuss with HR. You can't realistically ask a unit to disrupt their workflow. We try to accommodate many things with our staff, but their are times when we can't or else it is a burden to others. Just food for thought.

    Also, when you are doing your clinicals you will have several patients in different rooms, you can't change that. I don't want to discourage you from nursing, but it seems you have some unrealistic expectations and are thinking to far ahead of yourself. Get they nursing school and go from there.
  8. by   loriangel14
    I agree. They will only do so much to accomodate someone. They won't disrupt or rearrange the whole floor and work flow for one person, in clinical placements or work situation.
  9. by   bella201
    Hey NicuGal thanks for your input!! I know that I would have to talk to HR about my case and see what can be done to accommodate me; if they even can accommodate me. If I find that they can't then I will probably switch from Nicu to nursery instead. And I know that in clinicals patients will be in different rooms and I can't change that.

    If I get into the nursing program, in clinicals I actually won't be accommodated for anything as a rule so yes it's going to be a tough interesting experience!
  10. by   bella201
    Keep the comments coming guys I need all the advice I can get.
  11. by   TeenyTinyBabyRN
    The first horpital I worked at was a delivery hospital, where I would occasionally get floated to nursey. I have never run around in NICU, like I have run around in Nursey (Ussually when you have a super sick kiddo, you are mostly standing at his bedside all night). We were assigned 8+ babies, plus deliveries. Think you would have a nice little assembly line, with all your babies lined up neatly in a row? Not a chance. Nonstop calling from parents, "Bring my baby to the room," "Take my baby back to the nursey, he's crying," "I need help breastfeeding," "My baby spit up," "My baby is making funny grunting noises," Then you make your run for your kids that you are monitoring glucoses. By the time I brought one baby back to the nursey, two moms had already called for me to take their babies back to the room. I wouldn't be able to sit to chart until, after I gave report to the on coming shift.

    Maybe try a doctor's office?
  12. by   uRNmyway
    I don't really have input on the NICU part of it other than to agree that more of a well-baby or intermediate nursery would be better. However given the nursing situation right now, tons and tons of EXPERIENCED unemployed nurses, I don't know how easy it will be for you to get work on this kind of department as a new grad.

    Other suggestions though: Maybe psych? I've never worked psych, but seems like there would be less frantic running around.

    Or how about home health? I know you said you would prefer hospital work to get experience, but I just think the pace of home health would be well suited to your needs. And given your disability, you could possibly look into pediatric care. You know, the babies who get well enough to get out of NICU and go home, but will never really get better. IE will always require TF, possibly vents, you know? That way you have ONE patient at a time, less running around for multiple running alarms, no risk of your assignment being in multiple rooms. I have also seen on AN that there are nurses who basically go to school with one child every day for their medical needs. That might be something good for you too, kind of like a nurse/companion thing.

    I don't know how well these ideas fit your plans and needs, but I feel they might work well at least as far as your physical disability goes. Hope that helps a bit!