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Dpeterson777's Latest Activity

  1. Dpeterson777

    RNs who are/were ICU new grads - what was your orientation like?

    I am working as a new grad in a busy ER with many ICU pts that have to be held while waiting for transger to the unit. I remember feeling SO overwhelmed during my first 4 months. I remember crying some days, laughing some, and feeling completely like an idiot some days. TODAY, I am 6 months in, and I will say, IT IS SO MUCH BETTER. You will be amazed at how much more you will feel "in your skin" after 6 months. Something happens to where you are now anticipating orders, understanding labs, v/s, and pt symptoms. I cant really explain how this transition happens, BUT, it does. I felt like quitting some days because I felt so under-prepared. Once you get the "groove" of your unit and get the basics down, you will feel so much better! Once you don't have to think about what to do next and start to feel more natural, you will feel better. I've heard from most in my unit that it takes ATLEAST a year to feel just comfortable and not dangerous!! Just remember to ask for help when needed and you will be fine!
  2. Let me just say, IT GETS BETTER!! I am going on 6 months as a new grad without healtcare experience in a busy ER. We FREQUENTLY hold ICU patients in our ER because we don't have beds available. I'd say this... If you feel overwhelmed, tell your charge nurse. Ask her/him to review your charting/orders to make sure you have done as much as possible in the ER. In our ER we do STAT admission orders (Antibitoics, breathing txs, BP meds if needed, tests, labs, etc). I wouldn't worry too much. You are not expected to get all the admission stuff done! I'd say make sure the pt is stable, chart sedation and basic stuff that shows pt care is being provided. Make sure tests needed are ordered by ward clerk (EKG's, labs, wounds, cultures, influenza swabs, ua, etc). I would verbalize to admitting Doc things that need to be adressed like wound consults, etc. We don't acutally initiate these consults in our ER... Just remember, you are new and learning, and dont be expected to know EVERYTHING. I feel SO MUCH better after 6 months exp and it gets better each shift. I ALWAYS tell my charge if I feel overwhelmed or out of my scope of practice and ask them to review pt charting, nursing notes, and orders to make sure I have what is needed. I CHART THIS TOO. Sometimes you can only do what you can do... I remember going home one night after having an ICU pt and realizing I never had "orders" for the NGT I placed, never charted "sedation scale" (IE Ramsey, etc), BUT, I did an excellent job of charting pt status, vitals, sedation according to protocol, ER and admission orders, etc. I talked to my charge and was praised for such an excellent job. Just remember, you will get better with time! In the meantime, do what you need to protect your license and ask for help when needed! Hope you find the transition gets easier!
  3. Dpeterson777

    What's it really like to be a nurse?

    Many nurses in my area (California) are not finding jobs for up to two years. With that said, I don't want to discourage you, however nursing is VERY different than many expect. The time crunch, long hours, high level of responsibility and vast amount of paper work and liability are are the REALITIES of nursing. There is not a ton of time to spend "building relationships" and teaching and caring for patients as you would probably like. Most nurses find it difficult just to get the tasks completed safely. Remember its your license that needs to be protected and many things that need to be considered. I wish I could say nursing was what I thought it would be, but it is not. BUT, with that said, it is a daily challenge and sometimes struggle, but at the same time a privilege and honor. You do get moments with patients that you will never forget. I'd say overall, the job is physically and emotionally very demanding and difficult for the first year. You must be very resilient and have EXCELLENT critical thinking skills to survive. I'd say try phlebotomy or something where you might have less school time/investment and see how you like patient care. Then do what you feel is right! We had several people in our nursing class in their 40's, most had previous healthcare exp. Wish you the best of luck!
  4. THANK YOU FOR THIS!! I am fairly new in a busy ER and feel like this a lot of times! Each day is a learning experience and you really do have to just sit back and laugh sometimes! I loved your post, it was very encouraging and uplifting! Makes me feel good that other people have crazy days too!
  5. Dpeterson777

    New Grad Starting in ED - Advice on Good Assessments

    I am also starting as a new grad in ER next week! This is so exciting! I am nervous about starting in ER but am looking forward to it. I always liked ER from volunteering there and during clinicals. I think we will learn SO much this next year. Good luck to everyone, lets share stories of how much we learn once we start : )
  6. Dpeterson777

    New Grad applicant walked on a unit today...

    My advice is to get to know the recruiters! They are the gate keepers and will get you access to the managers. Trust me, this is the best way to get an interview! You can walk in and talk to them or call and make an appointment. Once you meet them you can ask how the managers feel about you going to the units. Some love this and look at it as determination. Others HATE it, so you have to be careful. Sorry you had such a bad experience. Don't take it personally, just imagine how many people she has probably had drop in on her. This is hard because the managers really depend on the recruiters to weed people out and send them the best. Don't give up and don't lose your determination. Just re-focus it. Start getting in touch with the recruiters. Email the managers, if you can get a hold of their email addresses OR call them. This is much less aggresive and still shows your determination.
  7. Apply everywhere! It can't hurt. Worst-case-scenario you can practice your interviewing skills! I went on several interviews for jobs I ended up not wanting but it def. boosted my confidence in interviewing and realizing what I DID want! BEst of luck to you.
  8. Dpeterson777

    Question about what to expect for a ER interview?

    Yes!!! So glad to hear another happy story!! I'm there too. Just finished ACLS and getting ready to be an Emergency Nurse! SO SCARY and so EXCITING at the same time. I know we will do great. Just imagine how much we will know after our first year : )
  9. Dpeterson777

    Question about what to expect for a ER interview?

    Yay!! Hope they pick you! Interviewing can be SO stressful. Keep us posted. Now for the waiting game!!
  10. Dpeterson777

    Question about what to expect for a ER interview?

    So, my cousin is an RN in the ER and she was on the panel to interview new grads at her hopsital. She told me to study major cases like Abdominal Aortic Anuerysms, Stroke, MI, Abdominal pain, DKA, Trauma, spinal cord injury. I googled everything I thought was major, life threatening and read up on nursing care for each. On my latest interview they did not ask one single situation question like this! They asked things like "Tell me about yourself," "What do you know about our hospital," "Tell me about a time a patient was upset and yelled at you," "Tell me about a tough decision you had to make." What I did to prepare was google "behavioral style interview questions for nurses." This helped tremendously. You really do need to have real-life examples of situations. That is what they are going to ask you for. I went on several interviews while in nursing school prior to practicing this style and THEY ALL asked this style of question. Best of luck to you!
  11. Dpeterson777

    Pre-nursing: A Love Story...

    Thanks for sharing! ; (Tear-jerker for sure. Glad to have passionate people join the profession!
  12. Dpeterson777

    Job fair attire??

    I usually wear a nice top (can be short sleeved), slacks, and a pair of nice dress shoes. I don't think a full suit is neccessary. Every job fair I have been to I seemed to be dressed appropriately. I was actually astonished by how many people were under dressed in wrinkly clothes, etc. I would advise not wearing scrubs. Just my two cents! Good Luck. I actually landed an interview because of a job fair. So go prepared to answer questions and sell yourself! Also, know EVERYTHING about the hospital. This is what makes you stand out from the rest.
  13. Dpeterson777

    nursing portfolios, what to do!?

    Hi there. You are right, portfolios are definitely a must nowadays! We were required to make one in nursing school. Here is how mine is constructed: Cover page/table of contents, cover letter, resume, references, letters of recommendation, 1 page copy of certifications, 1 page of an additional certificate in palliative care, lastly an essay I wrote that explains why I chose nursing. Hope this helps and good luck!!
  14. Dpeterson777

    Critique these Interviews for me please

    I have the cheesiest smile on my face right now!! I know how excited you must feel. Hope you love it there!! Congrats!!
  15. Dpeterson777

    Help Sacramento area nursing programs/schools

    Word of advice from a new grad ADN. GET YOUR BSN. No one is hiring ADN's, bottom line. I had solid A's on all of my pre reqs, and graduated with honors in nursing school. Plus I am a phlebotomist with tons of volunteer experience. Doesnt make a difference in this market. I would pick a BSN over any ADN program!
  16. Dpeterson777

    all the links i got bookmarked for NCLEX

    Thanks for sharing the links!