Hello all! So I have recently made the change from adult med surg to NICU. I was on my previous unit for almost 4 years and needless to say I loved my coworkers but the patient population began to change drastically (not in the best way). I've always had a desire to care for moms and babies or just sick babies in general. My job had a posting for NICU I took it and applied for the job and now I'm here!! I'm excited but I feel like I'm way in over my head. I'm week 3 of orientation and I feel like I don't know a thing. I went home feeling absolutely terrible the other day because I don't know anything. I guess it's more frustrating than anything else. How long does it take to feel the slightest bit comfortable. My assignment changes every day so I also feel like I don't see any progression. It's just frustrating. I'm terrified of failing. Did I make a mistake switching units!?! Any advice on how to get through this and become a great NICU nurse would be appreciated. Thanks!
NICU is a whole different world than adults. You are going to feel like you are a new grad and know nothing. Just have confidence in the system. For me as a new grad, it took 18 months to 2 yrs to feel totally comfortable. For you to feel somewhat comfortable, 6 months to a year. Hopefully, you have plenty of experienced nurses to help you through the transition when you are on your own.
Glad someone made this post. I've been thinking of a total change of from Med Surg to NICU. Bumping for my input and advice from others!!
I've been a NICU nurse for just over 3 years now and still often think about some great advice from when I started:
1. It will take at least 2 years to start to feel comfortable.
2. You SHOULD have a healthy level of nervousness at work. We go to high-risk deliveries and take care of fragile little lives that can take a turn for the worst in a second!! A little bit of anxiety will keep you on your toes. If you're not scared at all then something is wrong.
3. We worry more about new NICU nurses that don't ask questions - you'll be experiencing things you've never seen before for years!
The NICU is truly a team environment and your co-workers should treat it as such. Don't be afraid to ask for help or admit you don't know something. It's such a rewarding and exciting place - hang in there.
Best of luck!
Though it's been several months since you started this thread, thank you for starting it! My passion has always been with kids. I'm currently 7 months in my job on an adult med-surg/tele/step down unit. How were you able to do transfer specialties? did you network with the nurses on that unit first? Would love any input and advice you may have. Thanks and hope you're enjoying NICU!
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