Background: I'm a BSN student starting my final year (blocks 3 and 4) in August. I will graduate May 2019. I absolutely love nursing and I was given a super great opportunity to be an extern in the ED of a very well known teaching hospital. I work 3 12s for 8 weeks with a dedicated preceptor. I have absolutely no medical experience prior to school.
I started my externship last week and I am completely overwhelmed. I know that the ED is overwhelming in general but I feel discouraged for some reason? The nurses and techs are nice and helpful but I have a feeling they think I'm an idiot. They are shocked when I told them I hadn't done an IV or EKG or indwelling cath on a real person yet. Whenever a stroke code or ambulance comes in, they all jump in to help and I stand there feeling like an idiot. I've only had 2 shifts so far so I'm barely oriented to the unit (where certain supplies are, policies, procedures, names etc) but my preceptor has told me repeatedly "you need to be more assertive. You definitely want to me a good impression here" which made me even MORE nervous! Hah, I'm rambling now but does anyone have any advice/ opinions on how to do this without overstepping?
FYI as externs we are not allowed to pass, hang or push meds in any form but we can do all tech work, assess, document, start IVs, draw blood etc. In my first 2 days, my preceptor has had me start 10+ IVs, caths, EKGs etc already.
thanks a million!