tips and tricks to keep nursing knowledge/skill?

  1. hello all,

    i've been an lpn graduate for a little over a year now. even though i've been applying to various places (i am from BC and have been applying to the different health authorities in BC, as well as AB, SA, MA), i have not gotten a call back or even an email stating that they've reviewed my application.

    i have made the decision to move to alberta and work as a care aid and apply for AHS position while i am there. i worked so hard to in nursing school and i don't want to lose that knowledge, so what i've been doing so far is just reviewing old care plans, disease pathologies, and pharmacology notes i took while i was in school. i was wondering, do you guys have any tips/tricks to keep your nursing education/skills on point? i know experience is really key.. but kinda hard when i am basically a "sitting duck" when it comes to call backs.

    thanks so much for your replies,
  2. Visit deelorlene profile page

    About deelorlene

    Joined: Feb '13; Posts: 4


  3. by   Fiona59
    OK, here goes. I don't mean to burst your bubble but AHS is under siege. The budget is being slashed. Transitional Care Units in Edmonton have been closed displacing R and L nurses who are going to bump in the Edmonton Zone. Capital Care laid off nurses and use aides.

    I don't know how Calgary is doing but it won't be much better.

    Factor in AHS has promised to hire 70% of Alberta grads this year, it doesn't look good for you.

    NA's don't really do skills that can be considered nursing.

    Where do you live in BC you that you haven't had a call back? I know the Island is hard but had heard the interior was slightly better.
  4. by   joanna73
    Agreed. This is the worst possible time to move to AB, unless you don't mind very small town rural nursing. There was a memo circulating about cost cutting measures, and more to come after the budget. Facilities are choosing not to replace sick calls with casuals. Nurses are just working short on purpose on some units....and a friend confirmed this yesterday. Unless you have a job offer, or as I mentioned, you can tolerate rural nursing for at least one year, I would not advise the move. AB is currently hurting as much as the rest of Canada for health care.

    Based on the fact that you need to get experience ASAP, before you consider moving out of Province, I would strongly suggest you apply to any and every rural area in BC and even AB. You will gain valuable experience, work lots, and after a year or so, you will be able to move on. In order to build your skills since you're now a new/ old grad and maintain a routine, it helps to have a set rotation.

    All the cities are extremely competitive and there are not enough jobs. I've worked rural for 2.5 years. Best decision I made, soon time to move forward. Forget about all the comforts and frills, instead consider the positives to working rural. Just something to consider because if you looked at small towns, you could probably land a position within 4-6 weeks. Rural areas are all in need of staff.
    Last edit by joanna73 on Feb 27, '13 : Reason: Added information
  5. by   lilaclover6984
    It's a rough time to be a new grad LPN.

    Having just moved to Calgary from BC only 2 years ago ( spent 2 years in Vancouver and 2 in the Interior) I know that the job market in Alberta is tough right now, but I also know it is farrrrr worse in BC. Those private schools like Sprott Shaw are pumping out LPNs like there is no tomorrow in BC. I was experienced when I moved to BC and had a very very tough time finding work. I never did get more than casual my whole time in Vancouver and in the Interior
    It seemed my only option was LTC. Now mind you the job market in Calgary is much worse now than it was when I moved here 2 years ago but so is the job market in BC. When I first moved
    to Calgary 2 years ago, I found a 0.8 position at a hospital within a month of being here. I was not on the most desirable unit but I toughed it out there for 8 months and was then able to transfer to a unit I like.

    You just have to be persistent and make job hunting your full time job until you find something. Don't give up yet!!
  6. by   itsmejuli
    There are jobs for LPNs outside of AHS if you're willing to work homecare.
  7. by   deelorlene
    @itsmejuli yes, i am applying basically everywhere; both as an LPN and even as an HCA, though i heard most of the HCAs here in edmonton are contract workers. i forgot to mention that i am applying outside of AHS; just walking into residential care homes and dropping off resumes, as well as checking online on their websites in the career section.
  8. by   deelorlene
    @joanna73 i have applied to most of the LPN posting on the AHS website for edmonton. i guess it is time to venture out further. thank you
  9. by   deelorlene
    @Fiona59 i lived in surrey and applied to lower mainland postings as well as some on the island and interior; mostly lower mainland though. even with friends and family who work at the facilities, i haven't been able to get an interview because they worked in an acute setting that "required experience." which is always frustrating because how else am i supposed to get experience when i am unable to get a job

    being here in edmonton now, i'm having a flashback on how it was like in vancouver. *sigh* can't and don't wanna give up though. thanks for the replies! *goes back to filling out applications*
  10. by   joanna73
    Edmonton and Calgary are saturated with applicants and few jobs after the budget. You need to start working soon, or you will be considered an "old" grad, which is not desirable.

    Start widening your search outside the city limits. Many rural communities are in need of staff across AB. May not be ideal, but you need to start somewhere. Many of us did exactly that...I wanted experience and a pay cheque. Ideal or desirable was not a factor then. Once you have experience, then you can be more discriminating. The market is tough.