OMG ScrubRNwannabe! Your story is really, really depressing. It really paints a horrible portrait in the operating room.
Let me tell you my story.
I’m a registered nurse from a different country and migrated to the down under. Prior going to Australia, people were warning me that this is a racist country, that racism here is rampant. I was even more scared because I will be working in the theatre. The operating room is very different from other departments. It is a very close knit, fast paced environment.
When I arrived here and started working in big and busy Hospital, I was greeted and treated well with management (orientation day). When I started working inside the theatre, my clinical educator was very nice and accommodating. The people inside my theatre are not only exceptional in their skills, updated with their knowledge, well versed in the anatomy and physiology of each case but also very, very nice. Each of the preceptors that I work with everyday introduced me to the surgeon and the rest of the team. The surgeons would flash their big warm smile and would welcome me like a long lost family member. They would ask me questions on where I come from and my practice (I have theatre experience in my previous country). During the surgery, they (doctors or RN’s) would ask me to take a peek at the surgical site (without breaking sterility) to see the site they are working on (peek on the microscope for an ENT case, hover near the operative site during an open heart, etc). Some doctors would even discuss each step their doing to me.
There are some doctors who would bring food for the team to eat during breaks. And it’s for free! After the FREE treats, we help the doctor wash the plates and tidy the table.
My fellow RN’s also are nothing short of amazing. They are like brothers and sisters to me. They always look after me, making sure that I take my tea breaks and lunch breaks. Whenever there is a busy, busy day and the surgery is non-stop, there would be other staff walking in from time to time to relive you so that you can have your morning/afternoon/lunch break. My fellow RN’s would also ask me what I know about the procedure (to gauge on what I know and fill in the gaps) and would happily discuss with me the case and what instruments to give to the surgeon. (learning is facilitated here because it is not by rote memorization but rather by understanding)
I have only noticed that teamwork not only exists inside the theatre, but also the surgeons and fellow nurses treat even the orderlies and janitors as part of the team. They talk to them ask them how they are and even sometimes (if the nurses have time) would help them do their work (like mopping the floor for them or wiping the tables after procedures)
In our theatre it is a team. It is a great working environment. It is a big and busy hospital but you never notice the time, you never notice how tired you are because working in my theatre is very light because everyone is so nice. We are a family in there helping patients get the best care they deserve. Getting up every day and going to the hospital is not a chore, for me it is changing the world one patient at a time.
The theatre is a lovely place to be. From your story, it is a nightmare! I suggest you try working somewhere else. You might get employment and some skills if you get hired there. But it would only eat you. You might develop some trauma in the theatre and swear not to join this lovely field of nursing.