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Shadowing other units

Nurses   (477 Views 3 Comments)
by freckles23 freckles23 (Member) Member

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I have been an RN for 4 years and 1 class away from finishing my BSN. I currently work on a tele unit and enjoy it and it is also connected to a stepdown unit. I am trying to figure out what to do after my BSN. Im not sure I see myself as an NP because I dont know what area I want to go or if I even want to leave bedside nursing. Does anyones facility offer nurses to shadow other nurses in different departments? I may be interested in more in depth cardiac but im not sure because I dont know what other positions entail such as CVICU or cath lab, how would I know I like it if I dont see what is done on a daily basis? 

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Ruby Vee has 40 years experience as a BSN and specializes in CCU, SICU, CVSICU, Precepting & Teaching.

11 Followers; 66 Articles; 13,948 Posts; 171,993 Profile Views

Even if your hospital does not have an official program offering nurses the opportunity to shadow nurses in other departments, you may be able to arrange such an opportunity for yourself.  Talk to your manager first -- she may be able to help you set something up.  By talking to her first, you're not going behind her back, and she may very well have some ideas.  Your unit educator may also be able to help. 

Another idea is to become involved in a department wide (or even hospital wide) committee.  That will enable you to meet managers and influencers in different care areas.  Ask them to coffee and pick their brain about what goes on in their care area -- you'll have a better idea of whether it would be a good fit for you, and you'll have contacts there should you decide to change jobs.  

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WestCoastSunRN has 20 years experience as a BSN and specializes in CVICU, MICU, Burn ICU.

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I agree with Ruby Vee, be open about your interest in checking out other units.  My institution does not have formal shadowing opportunities, but it's not hard to set it up and people are generally happy to give you the opportunity to see what they do.  Even if it doesn't result in you applying for a transfer, it makes you more aware about what other units do.  Which is always a good thing.

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