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geriatrics, dementia, ortho
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LaterAlligator has 2 years experience and specializes in geriatrics, dementia, ortho.


LaterAlligator's Latest Activity

  1. LaterAlligator

    Yep. I have no friends in school.

    I'm in my last quarter of an ADN program and while I'm friendly and polite with my whole cohort, I really am only actual friends with one classmate. You know that quote "comparison is the thief of joy"? I reflect on that when I feel like everyone else has bonded more, or is more comfortable in the situation, than I am.
  2. LaterAlligator

    Possible Elder Abuse?

    It is always worth calling. I have done this after quitting at an assisted living facility that I worked at as an uncertified caregiver back in the day. State will investigate, may impose a 'stop placement' order on the facility so they cannot accept new residents until they have corrected their deficiencies, and will improve the safety and care of the elders there. Very worthwhile. Please call!
  3. LaterAlligator

    What nursing specialty interests you the most for the future?

    I've just finished my first year so I know there's more to be exposed to, but I like wound/ostomy care so far. I enjoyed the NICU which surprised me, and disliked L&D And ER, which was no surprise.
  4. LaterAlligator

    CNA during school

    Where I live, you have to put in a year as a LTC CNA before getting a job in the hospital, basically always. I think it's worthwhile. I'm in a 2 year ADN program now, after several years as a CNA, and my program doesn't require students to be certified as nursing assistants first anymore. We just took our ATI fundamentals assessment and our cohort on the whole was below national averages in the "basic care and comfort" category of questions. Those are the things you want to be able to do in your sleep, so that you can concentrate on the stuff you can only learn in nursing school. I did well on the exam and was thankful to have worked as a CNA. I think it really is helpful even though it's hard.
  5. LaterAlligator

    ATI Learning Assessment Information Please!!

    I'm in the 3rd quarter of my first year of a 2 year ADN program, and we just did the ATI Fundamentals assessment. I thought it was helpful, especially because we did some practice tests on the ATI website and have these ATI books for different topics (ie OB, Med Surg, etc.). I don't know about the more advanced ATI assessments because we haven't gotten there yet.
  6. LaterAlligator

    Length of Nursing Shifts

    I switched to 12's (as a hospital CNA) when I got into nursing school, and while I appreciate the fewer workdays per week, my weekends at work kick my butt. Hard. When I worked 8's, that was less so. Although the burnout aspect of feeling like you're ALWAYS at the hospital with 5 8's is a real factor too. Overall I'll stick with my 12's. Unless I wind up working somewhere I have to commute a long distance to. If that were the case I could see myself getting so tired I'd want a motel room after work!
  7. LaterAlligator

    Squeamish future nursing student

    You get used to it, with time. I used to have a blood/needle phobia, to the point where I actually passed out when getting my own blood drawn, more than once. It's different, at least for me, when there is a real person depending on you. Responsibility overrides my willies, to the point when I've been ok even when a dementia patient who was getting a blood transfusion pulled out her IV catheter and painted her bedding and face with that unit of blood! It was disgusting, but I knew she needed me. So I was able to suck it up. hope that helps! Start small, watch YouTube educational videos, maybe, on the stuff you hate, to begin with.
  8. LaterAlligator

    What did you give up to be in nursing school?

    Money and time, basically. I cut back from 38 hours a week at work to 24. I have school Tues-Friday and work 2 12-hour shifts on the weekends. I don't have much free time anymore & my relationships are suffering some because of it. But I know it'll be worth it when I'm done!
  9. Not 100% sure if that's the type of visial you meant (we haven't gotten to fluids & electrolytes yet in my program) but it looked helpful to me. I find a lot of things like that on Pinterest, actually!
  10. I work 2 12-hour shifts per week while in nursing school as a CNA. If I could afford to just do school I would even though I'm getting experience & like my coworkers a lot. School is tough!
  11. LaterAlligator

    CNA before RN?

    I've been a CNA for about 5 years now, and continue to work as one at my local hospital while I'm in my ADN program. I find that my experience has been incredibly helpful with school so far. Also, one of the only ways to get hired at my hospital as a new grad nurse is by working there in a different role first to build up seniority. I say go for it! And expect your time in LTC to be hellish. It's a trial-by-fire but you'll learn prioritization and speed quickly.
  12. LaterAlligator

    you know you're a CNA when...

    You can mentally juggle and prioritize the needs of 10+ patients, and plan your route around the unit accordingly (including knowing which ones will try to flag you down even if you're carrying a heavy food tray and bag of trash, so you detour in order to avoid their path!).
  13. LaterAlligator

    2014 Wage Survey For CNAs, Medical Assistants, HHAs, PCTs: Post Here!

    Job title:CNA Location: Washington State rate of pay: $15.15/hr, originally hired at $11.47 differentials:yes, more on eve shift, night shift, and weekends. shifts usually worked 12 hour day shifts from 0700-1930 current specialty: Ortho years of experience: 5 employment status:part time (24 hours per week, which is my facility's minimum to be eligible for benefits. career goals currently enrolled in a 2 year ADN-RN program :)
  14. I'm just finishing my first quarter of nursing school & can see potential for strong friendships with a few of my classmates. I tend to be kind of private and slow to open up, so part of me was worried that everyone would have jelled into cliques by the time I was comfortable enough to talk to people. So far everyone still seems to be open, but I think we're getting to the stage where people may drop out or fail out
  15. LaterAlligator

    "For Profit" vs. "Non Profit" employers?

    The biggest difference I've seen is in Union jobs vs. Nonunion jobs, regardless of the profit status of the organization. At my nonunion jobs I've had them try to force me to pay for my own mandatory Ed. (despite them saying it'd be provided in my orientation) and work there 5 years before being eligible for health insurance. I would never work nonunion again.