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Meriwhen ASN, BSN, MSN, RN

Psych ICU, addictions
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Meriwhen is a ASN, BSN, MSN, RN and specializes in Psych ICU, addictions.

Psychiatric nurse. Shaun the Sheep fan. Born on the right coast. Living on the left coast. In between, spent a little time on the third coast. Yankees fan until the day I die. If you need help with the forum, feel free to send me a PM. If I can't help, I will point you in the direction of who can.

Meriwhen the RN and Roustabout
Where am I going, and why am I in this handbasket?

Meriwhen's Latest Activity

  1. Actually, it’s MSN now but it won’t let me update my profile...

    1. tnbutterfly - Mary

      tnbutterfly - Mary, BSN, RN

      Your credentials have been updated. 😀


  2. Meriwhen

    Addictions Nursing

    Overview Addictions Nursing (often referred to as substance abuse nursing) deals with the nursing care of individuals suffering from one or more addictions. Addictions Nursing is considered a subspecialty of Psychiatric Nursing. Patients may be suffering from the addiction alone or may have one or more co-occurring psychiatric diagnoses: this is termed dual- or multiple-diagnosis. People often think of addictions only in terms of alcohol, painkillers, or street drugs such as heroin. In addition to the aforementioned, addictions can also include: methadone benzodiazepines such as Valium and Xanax ADHD/amphetamine medications non-opiate pain medications other prescription medications OTC medications such as: cough medications inhalants nicotine caffeine Also, addictions are not limited to drugs only. Patients may also be suffering from addictions to sex, gambling, or shopping. In addition, eating disorders fall under addiction medicine. Addictions Nursing is one of the more "medical" psychiatric nursing subspecialties, in that patients experience physiological as well as psychological addiction to a substance or behavior. Eating disorders have numerous physiological sequelae, many of which are severe or even fatal. Cessation of the addictive substance or behavior (detox) often causes physiological complications, some of which are fatal. Duties therapeutic communication rapid, comprehensive assessment pain management development of nursing diagnoses and plans of care administration of medication patient education crisis intervention family support Addictions nurses care for patients during detox/withdrawal as well as during their recovery. In addition to the physiological complications of withdrawal, patients frequently have medical comorbidities that will also require nursing care. Practice Settings When it comes to where addictions nurses can work, most people probably think first of places like the Betty Ford Center. That is just one of many places an Addictions nurse can practice. Addictions nurses are found in a variety of settings such as: freestanding psychiatric hospitals psychiatric units in mental hospitals intensive outpatient and partial hospitalization programs residential (short- or long-term) treatment centers mental health clinics private practices public schools community agencies Professional Organizations The main professional organization for Addiction nurses is the International Nurses Society on Addictions (IntNSA). Membership is open to RNs, however, Licensed Practical/Vocational Nurses (LPN/LVN) and non-nurses may join as associate or affiliate members, though they may not vote or hold office. Since addictions nursing is related to psychiatric nursing, addiction nurses may also be interested in joining the American Psychiatric Nurses Association (APNA) and the International Society of Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurses (ISPN). Nurses can also join the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM). It is, "a professional medical society representing over 6,000 physicians, clinicians and associated professionals in the field of addiction medicine". The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is an agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). This agency, "leads public health efforts to advance the behavioral health of the nation and to improve the lives of individuals living with mental and substance use disorders, and their families". Educational Requirements Graduate from an accredited Practical/Vocational Nursing (LPN/LVN) program or Registered Nursing (RN) program LPN/LVN: certificate, diploma or degree RN: Diploma, ADN, BSN, or MSN Successfully pass the NCLEX-PN or NCLEX-RN Current, unencumbered LPN/LVN or RN license in U.S. state of practice Nurses can work in addictions as an RN or an LPN/LVN. Other countries may have additional requirements for practicing as an Addictions nurse. Certification International Nurses Society on Addictions (IntNSA) The following addictions nurse certifications are available for the RN and the Advanced Practice Nurse (APN): Certified Addiction Registered Nurse (CARN) Certified Addiction Registered Nurse – Advanced Practice (CARN-AP) The Addictions Nursing Certification Board (ANCB) offers the certifications supported by the IntNSA. The certifications are available for RNs or advanced-practice RNs only and are valid for 4 years. CARN eligibility (not all-inclusive) Current, unencumbered RN license in U.S. state of practice 30 hours of continuing education credits Evidence of 2000 hours with experience in addictions nursing within the last 3 years CARN-AP eligibility (not all-inclusive) Current, unencumbered RN license as an RN in U.S. state of practice Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree or higher 45 hours of continuing education Minimum 500 supervised hours in addictions and 1500 hours of nursing experience in addictions as an Advanced Practice Nurse (APN) within the last 3 years practice in addictions American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) RNs and Nurse Practitioners (NP) may also apply for the following certifications by the ANCC*: Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing Certification (RN-BC) {for the Registered Nurse} Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (Across the Lifespan) Certification (PMHNP-BC) {for the Nurse Practitioner} *LPNs/LVNs are not eligible for these certifications Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing Certification (RN-BC): eligibility (not all-inclusive) Graduate from an accredited RN nursing program with a Diploma, ADN, or BSN degree or higher and successfully passed NCLEX-RN Current, unencumbered RN license in U.S. state or territory or hold the legally recognized equivalent in another country 2 years full-time as an RN Minimum 2,000 hours clinical practice in psychiatric–mental health nursing within last 3 years Completed 30 hours of continuing education in psychiatric–mental health nursing within last 3 years Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (Across the Lifespan) Certification (PMHNP-BC): eligibility (not all-inclusive) Current, unencumbered RN license in U.S. state or territory or the legally recognized equivalent in another country and successfully passed NCLEX-RN Master of Science in Nursing (MSN), post-graduate, or nursing doctoral degree from an accredited psychiatric-mental health NP Program Minimum 500 faculty-supervised clinical hours must be included in the psychiatric-mental health NP Program Salary (2020) According to salary.com, the average hourly wage for an Addictions Nurse in the U.S. is $34 and falls between $31 and $38. According to ZipRecruiter, the average annual pay in the U.S. is $62,104 a year with salaries as high as $132,000 and as low as $22,000, depending on education, experience, and location. If You Are the One in Recovery ... Psychiatric nursing tends to attract a lot of nurses recovering from their own addictions issues, and Addictions Nursing seems like it would be a natural fit for the recovering nurse. However, you do NOT need to be in recovery (I.e., have your own addiction problem) in order to be an addictions nurse. Nor does being a recovering addict ensure that you will be good at addictions nursing. You will, however, need to self-assess to determine your own beliefs about and attitudes towards addiction, so that you can provide competent patient-centered care. Recovering Nurses that Tend to Do Well in Addictions Nursing Those who have a good handle on their own recovery. They have been clean/sober for at least a year, if not more. They are able to keep their own recovery separate from their patient's recovery. They do not try to impose their own values, beliefs, or "this is what I would do" on the patient. They are also cognizant of boundaries: while some may choose to share their own addiction and recovery experience (keep in mind that a nurse is NEVER required to share this), they always keep the focus on the patient and the patient's recovery. They are aware of what could trigger a relapse and work to avoid or mitigate these triggers. Recovering Nurses that Do Not Do Well in Addictions Nursing Those who are newly in recovery, having been clean/sober only for a few months and are still finding their own path. They are looking to Addictions nursing to take the place of therapy or to meet unfulfilled needs. They tend to see the patient in terms of their own (the nurse's) recovery, and have a hard time understanding or even just accepting a patient's decisions or actions. Instead, they may try to impose their own beliefs and choices on the patient. In short, the nurse can make the patient's recovery about themselves and not about the patient. Or, they can be at risk of having their own relapse triggered by their working environment. Only you can decide if you are able to work in Addictions Nursing as a recovering nurse. Choosing a Specialty but not sure which one is best for you? Download Nursing Specialties Guide!
  3. Meriwhen

    How often do you wash your scrubs? :)

    I wash them after every shift. But I get mine at WalMart and have a good selection to rotate through, so I don’t worry about them getting worn out fast.
  4. Meriwhen

    Social Media and Doxxing - Your Thoughts???

    I know I've posted this story before, but I was in a RN-BSN program affiliated with a hospital system. At orientation, we were told this cautionary tale about social media: The school's policy was to try to place their own graduates in their hospitals first before accepting outside new grads--grads were not guaranteed a job by any means, but they did get preference for hiring when possible. Well, one of their graduates was pretty unhappy with how things were going and was online shooting off her mouth, saying pretty negative things about the job hunt and the school. The school found out about it, was not happy, and decided not to hire her into their system. How did they find out? An HR rep from ANOTHER hospital in town saw her posts and notified the school. This second hospital didn't want her for their new grad program either after seeing this. AND they also let the third major hospital system in town know about what she was posting online, so they could decide if they wanted her in their new grad programs. No idea if she was able to land herself that new grad job... Nursing is a smaller world than you think...and the internet makes it even smaller.
  5. Meriwhen

    Social Media and Doxxing - Your Thoughts???

    Those were my thoughts. Given how big social media has become, it's not unheard of for companies--not just hospitals--to have people placed in social media groups to monitor for these sort of things.
  6. Meriwhen

    Job Opportunity or Relationship

    New grad jobs are hard to come by...and opportunities to get into the VA are just as hard. You were very lucky and may have potentially scored both. If you get the VA job, I would work the 1-2 years in SF, then--if you two are still together--look at transferring to a VA out by him. If your boyfriend is as invested in the relationship as you are, then he will understand that what you are doing the best for both you as an individual and you as a long-term couple. And he'll be willing to come out to SF for half that time while you go visit DC the other half. But if he's expecting you to move out there "to make it [the relationship] work"...sorry, but I'm old and cynical and that sentence there raises a red flag. If he's expecting you to make all the sacrifices and do all the heavy lifting, I don't think he's as willing to put the effort into the relationship as you think/hope he is. Maybe I'm wrong and I'd love to be proven so...but I've seen this happen way too often to be optimistic about the chances. At the end of the day, the decision is up to you. But don't just think in terms of the boyfriend...think of what is best for YOU at the end of the day. Best of luck whatever you decide.
  7. Meriwhen

    Maintaining BLS while not currently working

    You do not need to keep your BLS active while unemployed or to maintain/renew your nursing license.
  8. Meriwhen

    I'm the bad guy for not working off the clock

    And if you start making it a habit to work off the clock, they might come to expect it from you. Unofficially, of course. And as you said, OP: if refusing to work unpaid gets you fired, then perhaps it's not that bad of a thing. Because it sounds like free labor may be the norm there.
  9. Your HR or staffing department should have a copy of the on-call policy. Contact them and ask.
  10. OP: as others have already said, you need to check with your state's BON to determine if you need to report it. If you aren't sure whether it falls into the category of reportable, you should seek legal advice as we can't give that here. You may also want to consider bringing an attorney to court with you to help mitigate the damage this could do to your driving record. There's a world of difference between misdemeanor and infraction, and if you're going to have one of them on your record, you want the infraction if at all possible. The misdemeanor will do more than just affect your license renewal...it's also going to be something you might have to disclose when applying for jobs and employers ask those lovely Criminal History questions. Since the OP's question has been answered--several times over--I'm closing this for now. Best of luck, OP.
  11. Meriwhen

    Anyone ever been on strike?

    Mostly marching in the picket line and listening to speeches. Nothing really gory or messy to it at all. I was working per-diem at this facility so I didn't take a financial hit, nor did I have to struggle with whether to cross the picket line because this wasn't my only job. I didn't have to really do anything about this strike. But I still felt strongly that we (general) were not receiving a fair deal, so off to the picket line I went.
  12. Meriwhen

    Interview question for nurse extern position.

    I couldn't answer it as I never wanted to work med-surg. Question is: why do YOU want to work med-surg?
  13. Meriwhen

    Littman or MDF Stethoscope

    I have both, and honestly, they're both good steths. I personally prefer the MDF, but the MDF is kind of heavy. So if you're the neck-wearing-steth type (I am not), I'd go with a Littman. II SE is a good one for nursing school. Classic III is more sensitive but more expensive. Keep in mind: While you want a good steth for nursing school, you won't want to spend bank because of all the abuse it will take. Plus the risk that it will get lost, stolen, damaged... Even though you say this one will go into your career with you, once you graduate, you will have the desire to treat yourself to a really good steth, likely engraved with your name and RN or LVN. So you may not want to go overboard with the nursing school one.
  14. Meriwhen

    I cant stand the attitude of many nurses

    There is validity in this. If you feel like you are coming across this attitude in everyone, then it may be due to how you are perceiving things. This is no slur upon you, it just suggests that perhaps you need to examine what's going on that is making you perceive this in everyone and everything you come across. A therapist or other professional will be able to help you work through what you are feeling. Davey has posted some excellent suggestions for you to check into while you're waiting to be seen. Best of luck
  15. Meriwhen

    Is my career over already???

    One thing you may want to consider is places that don't run on 12-hour shifts, but instead on 8s. Nights may not be possible for you, but the evenings might. Not a lot of people want to work evenings, and employers may be more willing to take on an old new grad who does. And it may be easier to plan childcare around a 0700-1500 or a 1500-2300 schedule. Also, since you are a military family, contact your local MWR office. They can hook you up with resources for childcare services available both on and off your local military installation. A lot of these providers can accommodate odd schedules and some even offer drop-in or 24/7 care. Nursing school and my first two years of my career wouldn't have been possible if it weren't for them.
  16. Meriwhen

    Translating at Work

    I used to work for a hospital where you could get certified as a Spanish translator (why only Spanish, I don't know). They had two levels of translator: 1 (some knowledge) and 2 (fluent). If you had level 1, you could translate on a casual basis but still needed official translating services for documentation, assessments, etc. Obtaining level 2 was very difficult to do, but once achieved, you did not have to use official translating services. You also got paid extra.