I'm an ER nurse who is thinking of switching to Labor and Delivery, and I'd like to hear some perspectives from nurses already in that field.
First, am I crazy? (Only half joking, ha)
I have 6 years of ED experience but zero labor/delivery experience, besides my nursing school clinical. So I am not sure I can even get hired in L/D anyway. But I know that I really want to move to this specialty, I've wanted to for years and feel pretty passionately about it. Whether or no I'm cut out for it remains to be seen.
Any advice for specific material I should review?
Networking tips? I feel I should reach out to current L and D nurses but I don't know any personally and have no idea where to start. Anybody else in here come to women's health as a second specialty? How did you research/network? Or did you just apply and hope for the best?
I know this is a really broad question, hopefully I'm making sense. Thank you in advance!
Oct 21, '17
I recently switched from the ER to L&D, although I didn't have as much experience as you do (I was a new grad in the ER for a year). I'm sure you would do great! Labor and Delivery reminds me of the ER at times, although obviously much more specialized, which I personally like. I would review meds frequently given antepartum, during labor, and post-partum. I would also brush up on all the terminology--labor and delivery has a language of its own with lots of acronyms that I wasn't familiar with. Another thing to study is emergencies that can happen during labor and delivery.
The thing that has been the most difficult for me, transitioning to L&D has been the enormous amount of charting. I'm not sure how your current facility does things, or what charting system they use, but to me the charting felt like an extreme amount more in labor and delivery.
I did talk to some current labor and delivery nurses and tried to network a little bit, however mostly just applied to openings within the area. There are a lot of differences, but I have loved it so far and would totally recommend making the switch if you're passionate about it!