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maternal child, public/community health
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anurseatlast has 4 years experience and specializes in maternal child, public/community health.

anurseatlast's Latest Activity

  1. anurseatlast

    Nursing gear passed on from older generation

    My mom was a nurse for over 50 years. I have her last stethoscope and lab coat. I also have a picture of her at nursing school graduation. She was in the nurse cadets and was paid a stipend of $5 a month while in nursing school. I wish I had her cape or nursing cap. I remember her putting on her cap for work every day in the 60's. She definitely passed on her love of learning and her concern for her patients.
  2. anurseatlast

    My Reasons For Avoiding The Acute Care Hospital

    I too have not worked in acute care. Could I? Yes and I could be good at it but I knew before I went to nursing school that I wanted to do maternal-child public health. I wanted time to do health teaching and to have long-term relationships with my patients. I got the "you really need to do a couple years of med-surg" from instructors and other nurses. Their rationale was that it taught you skills you would not learn in other jobs. When I asked if aspiring acute care nurses needed to do public health, rehab, long-term care etc to develop skills they wouldn't learn in acute care, they usually just looked at me like I was weird. I told them, "No nurse can know it all. There is too much information and care is too complex. If you are a cardiac nurse, you develop that skill and knowledge but do not know maternal-child or peds. You develop a skill set in whatever nursing job you do. You can't know or do it all." I was 51 when I graduated. I did not want to waste a couple years doing a job I did not like. After 9 months in a peds clinic, I got my ideal job in public health working with pregnant and parenting teens - exactly what I wanted to do. I have autonomy, do lots of teaching, face unexpected challenges daily and my job is never boring. Is it easier than acute? NO! It is just hard in different ways but I love it. Some nurses with hospital experience try it and find it is not a good fit for them - they may not like being without backup, going into strangers homes in not great areas of town or they miss the adrenaline rush. The great thing about nursing is you can find an area that fits you. I appreciate all the great acute care nurses I know. I'm just not one of them. Might I regret done the road that I did not do acute care? Maybe but I for sure I absolutely would regret spending time doing acute care. Am I a "real nurse"? Yes. I use the nursing process every day. I don't give meds but I do a lot of teaching. I advocate for my patients when they are not receiving the care they deserve and need. I educate about a wide variety of subjects - not just the teen mom but other family members as well. I am a real nurse and I love what I do. I hope those of you who don't love your job can find one that is a good fit for you.
  3. anurseatlast

    Learning to count newborn heart rate

    Thanks for all the tips. I am a public health nurse in a home based program for teen moms and babies. I generally see healthy babies (and do not have pulse ox or other technology) but have baby now with cardiac issues. I knew some of you here would be a great help. Thanks for all the ideas.
  4. I am not a student but thought someone here might be able to help. I find it hard to count a newborn's heart rate because it is so fast. I have seen sites for learning breath and heart sounds and wonder if there is one for counting newborn's HR. I'm sure there are hints on how to do it and am hoping for somewhere that I can count & see how accurate I am. Any other hints would be welcome.
  5. anurseatlast


    It is good that you know your weaknesses going into it. There really is not a ton of math in nursing school but it is important that you be able to do it. Since you have a couple months until you start, I would suggest looking for a book on math for nurses (maybe someone will have a specific recommendation) and find a tutor among your friends or family - they do NOT have to be a nurse in order to help you because it is math and should make sense to anyone who is good at math. If you run into something you can't figure out, go to a nurse (if you know one) or come hear and ask someone to explain it. And stats are not that big of a part of nursing school so I wouldn't sweat it. Doing this will reduce your stress and will really benefit you when you get to school. The fact that you understand A&P and patho will be a great help in school and as a nurse. Many students struggle because they do not have a good foundation in those which are crucial. As far as doing an accelerated program, it is intense but definitely doable. I loved the program I did and was very glad I had done the accelerated one. Congrats on getting accepted and I hope you love it too.
  6. anurseatlast

    Nurse Family Partnership

    I do not work for Nurse Family Partnership but am a public health nurse in a similar program with a non-profit. Just wanted to say I love my job! I can't imagine doing anything else. I love getting to know my clients and to have enough time to really teach my clients what they need to know. I have a lot of autonomy with a great team that supports me and backs me up. If you decide to go for it, I hope you love it as much as I do.
  7. anurseatlast

    College of Saint Mary

    CSM has a good program but it is very expensive. They do, however, have a lot of scholarships so you should check them out. After 3 years, you get your ASN (and can get your RN when you pass NCLEX) and then go for very limited time the last year to finish your BSN (last I heard, one day a week so you can work). CSM has a good reputation and I have heard that most of their grads have jobs before or soon after graduation. Even so, you could go to a community college to get your ASN at a much lower cost - if you qualify for a full Pell grant, it will cover your tuition, fees, books, etc and you could come out debt-free. That is a definite plus. If you are in the Omaha area, check out Metropolitan Community College in Omaha and Iowa Western Community College in Council Bluffs (you can get in-state tuition there if you live in Nebraska). It would likely take you one year to do pre-requisites at either before getting into the nursing program. There are advantages to doing that. Many people find nursing classes harder than they expected (not to scare you off but it is true). Doing things like A&P, chemistry, and math classes before starting nursing classes may make it easier for you to focus on the nursing classes. MCC's nursing program is set up so that you can take you LPN boards after the first year if you want. There is less class time the second year (to finish your ASN and then get RN) so many students work part-time while finishing. The last I heard, IWCC's program is set up the same way. If you go that route, you may find a job where your employer will pay some of the cost for you to do a RN to BSN program.
  8. anurseatlast

    You Know You're A Nurse If...

    Your 2 1/2 year old, after climbing under the table at the restaraunt to get a dropped toy, says, "I need hand 'tizer. I have germs now." Your 4 year old gets a scratch on his hand. When you say, "Guess we'll have to cut it off so it doesn't hurt anymore," his response is, "You mean AMPUTATE?? No Way!" (from my grandson - his mom and grammy are nurses!)
  9. I am a public health nurse in a community-based program that serves teen and young adults up to age 21 who are pregnant and/or parenting. We see the moms and children in their home (or other community site of her choice) from pregnancy (if we get the referral soon enough) until the baby is one year old or so. If the mom enrolls after the birth (the age of the mom qualifies her for the program; the age of the child is irrelevant so we get children up to age 5 or so), we see her for about a year. I teach how to have a healthy pregnancy, labor and birth, breastfeeding, infant care and development, how to be a nurturing parent, birth control, healthy relationship, a variety of health topics (today I taught nutrition to a mom who wants to lose weight), as well as encouraging them to stay in school, how to get a job ....... I often have the opportunity to teach the whole family about a variety of topics. I also teach in parenting classes at the public school a couple times a month. I absolutely LOVE my job! It is a challenge every day (aren't all nursing jobs???) and I never know what the day will bring. I have a lot of autonomy and work with a great team (which also includes social workers). I know what I do impacts the future of the mom and her child. I can't imagine doing anything else.
  10. anurseatlast

    baby friendly questions

    Actually, having a mom hand express colostrum and spoon- or cup-feeding it to the baby is an appropriate intervention if the baby is not yet able to latch. There are many advantages to the baby receiving colostrum as early as possible (and for the mom to express or nurse ASAP after birth) and amazingly, newborns often do well with spoon- or cup-feeding which can help to maintain their blood glucose. Your comment about "milk hasn't come down all the way to the nipple" shows lack of understanding about breastfeeding. I am not saying this to be critical - most nurses get very little education about the importance and process of breastfeeding in nursing school. (or many other important topics for that matter - they can only cram a certain amount of information in!) If you will be working with women or young families, please take time to learn more so that you can provide up-to-date information. There are a lot of great resources on the internet: Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine (primarily for docs but others can access it), CDC, American Academy Of Pediatrics, to name a few, have accurate information. There are many great topics with which to start (and right now your priority is to finish school and pass NCLEX but someday you will have free time again!) but perhaps researching why it is important not to give even one bottle without clear medical need would be an interesting place to start. Congrats on being almost DONE with nursing school. Soon you will have your license in your hand!
  11. anurseatlast

    One month as a PHN....

    What kind of public health are you doing? I knew even before nursing school I wanted the be a public health nurse. I wanted the opportunity to build long-term relationships with my patients and to do a lot of teaching. A year after I graduated, I got my dream job. I work with pregnant and parenting teens (mostly low-income) in a home-based program. I absolutely LOVE it. Every day is different and has unique challenges. I work with a great team which makes it even better!
  12. anurseatlast

    Weird little things you do as a nurse

    Working with pregnant and parenting teens in a home-based program, I get to do lots of awesome things that make a difference for the families and give me a sense of satisfaction. Last week, i visited a mom with a sick toddler. She was out of milk and had no one to go to the store for her. At the end of my day, I bought and delivered milk to her. She was SO happy. I held a newborn baby while the mom got in the shower to pump her over full breasts. I showed her a few tricks and in a few days she was a smiling, successful breastfeeding mom. I teach moms to make toys with items found in their home. I get on the floor and play with babies and toddlers to show moms how to play with their children. I asked a mom with absolutely no money what she wished she could buy for her baby. Her answer was socks because baby socks are so cute and she always thought that would be fun. Her simple wish made me cry when I left. We got a "donation" of tiny baby socks that week which I took to her. She was so happy with such a small thing. I arranged an emergency food pantry for a large family with no food due to a problem with their food stamps. They have no car so I delivered the food along with some extra items from the grocery store. Helped a mom who had nothing make a fleece tie blanket for her baby. She opened up and talked about her hopes and dreams for her baby while she worked (like driving with your kids - they often find it easier to talk about deep things when they don't have to make eye contact). I reinforced how special it will be for her baby to have something she made for him. I have done visits at the zoo and the Children's Museum. (and the mall, the laundramat, the school, a library, sitting on the front porch in 100 degree weather....) I have gone on a walk and to the park with a mom with 3 very young children who wanted to learn how to make them obey so she could take them out alone. (It gave her an opportunity to implement her plan with an extra pair of hands there)
  13. anurseatlast

    A question for the nursing moms.

    Children grow up quickly - which you know with a 16 year old. You only have a short time with your kids at home. If you have a choice, I would definitely work part-time. Not only do you get to spend more time with your kids, but I think there is less stress than when both parents are working full-time. A teenager and two very young ones - you will definitely be busy enough without working fulltime. Give yourself time to enjoy them!
  14. anurseatlast

    What career did you have before nursing?

    I worked as a CNA at a nursing home and hospital when I was in high school. I got married and switched to working for a medical temp agency (better hours). I did that until I had my son. Then I was fortunate to stay home with my children. I taught them at home through high school. I relearned algebra with them which came in handy for college! As a hobby, I became a childbirth and breastfeeding educator. I only taught once a week and it was something I did for me - I loved it. When I became a single parent, I knew I needed an education to make enough to survive.I decided to fulfill a childhood dream - to be a nurse. I started taking pre-reqs and took about 2 1/2yrs to finish them while working numerous part-time jobs (teaching, cleaning houses and a church, etc), finishing the last 2 1/2 years of teaching my daughter through high school and caring for my mom after she was diagnosed with terminal cancer. I did mostly online because I just didn't have time to actually go to class. It was a crazy time. I finished my associates in pre-nursing 3 months after my mom died. I began an accelerated program 9 months later and graduated at age 51. Going into nursing was one of the best decisions I ever made. I have a job I love and know I make a difference. I work for a great company and have very supportive coworkers. If you want to change careers later in life, go for it. You will eventually be 5 years older anyway. Why not be doing something you love?
  15. anurseatlast

    Oh! The sacrifices we make just to get through nursing school

    Congrats NurseLoveJoy88! You did it. Now you will reap the rewards of all those sacrifices. Hope you find a job you love!
  16. anurseatlast

    Losing my mind in nursing school...

    I am sorry for all the stresses of life that is making school harder for you. You have a lot going on right now. i would suggest that you get some counseling to help you figure out how to cope with all that while keeping up with school. Your school probably has counselors who can see you short-term and who can refer to community resources that offer counseling on a sliding scale. What you are going through is tough but the depression will make it much more overwhelming. For yourself and for your son, get some help. You are worth it!