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Sick of nurses "referring" to our specialty

School   (3,002 Views | 34 Replies)

Jedrnurse has 25 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in school nurse.

14,437 Profile Views; 1,571 Posts

Just read yet ANOTHER post from a new grad crashing and burning in their first job getting a variation of this advice:

"Why don't you try something easier/less stressful like being a school nurse?"

I don't know about y'all, but I am OVER other nurses assuming that this is an appropriate position for a brand new nurse. Of course there are exceptions, but exceptions are by definition, exceptional.

Thoughts, anyone?

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LikeTheDeadSea has 6 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in School Nursing.

1 Follower; 556 Posts; 5,119 Profile Views

I like to share that I've worked with outstanding nurses with a decade of ICU/CCU experience who do school or camp nursing for less than 3 weeks before quitting due to feeling overwhelmed, unstructured, and isolated/alone.

I then remind people that I have a Master's and post-graduate education for this specialty, as required by my state, and while there are different levels of school nursing structure, to imply that the niche of what I do is easy based  on one experience they recall is an insult to what I do every day.   I phrase it simply/nicely.  People don't know what they don't know.

Also my response when people (including TEACHERS) ask me if I plan to go back to school to be a "real nurse".

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BrisketRN has 4 years experience as a BSN, RN.

684 Posts; 2,754 Profile Views

It takes outrageous amounts of confidence in your assessment skills, knowledge of emergency care, understanding of federal and local laws, ability to work in multi-specialty teams, ability to stay calm under pressure,  confidence in directing lay people in an emergency, and the ability to look something up while not looking like you're looking it up.  And triaging skills!  And education skills!  It was a huge learning curve for me since I only had 2 years experience as a nurse before starting at a school.  I had to really prove myself in my interview too.  People can say whatever they're going to say.  Maybe they're just jelly of this sweet schedule. 

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JenTheSchoolRN is a BSN, RN and specializes in School nursing.

2,656 Posts; 24,320 Profile Views

I am an exception of a new grad going into this field, but I got great training (also a huge exception). I would not recommend to a nurse who struggled on the floor. That nurse will not handle it well when 6+ kids enter your office at once and all of them have zero patience and want a solution now, no ifs ands or buts.

I have a friend that subs for me occasionally. Seasoned med/surg nurse, now an NP. Told me my job was more stressful than being on the floor because you were it when it came to medical personal and that it was hard not having access to all the tools one have on the floor. She called me a rock star, which was nice :).

Edited by JenTheSchoolRN

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NutmeggeRN has 25 years experience as a BSN and specializes in kids.

2 Followers; 6 Articles; 3,996 Posts; 43,278 Profile Views

1 minute ago, BiscuitRN said:

It takes outrageous amounts of confidence in your assessment skills, knowledge of emergency care, understanding of federal and local laws, ability to work in multi-specialty teams, ability to stay calm under pressure,  confidence in directing lay people in an emergency, and the ability to look something up while not looking like you're looking it up.  And triaging skills!  And education skills!  It was a huge learning curve for me since I only had 2 years experience as a nurse before starting at a school.  I had to really prove myself in my interview too.  People can say whatever they're going to say.  Maybe they're just jelly of this sweet schedule. 

This!!! 8 days a week!!! Well, 5, based on the school schedule...

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BrisketRN has 4 years experience as a BSN, RN.

684 Posts; 2,754 Profile Views

Just now, JenTheSchoolRN said:

I am an exception of a new grad going into this field, but I got great training (also a huge exception). I would not recommend to a nurse who struggled on the floor. That nurse will not handle it well when 6+ kids enter your office at once and all of them have zero patience and want a solution now, no ifs ands or buts.

I have a friend that subs for me occasionally. Seasoned med/surg nurse, now an NP. Took me my job was more stressful than being on the floor because you were it when it came to medical personal and that it was hard not having access to all the tools one have on the floor. She called me a rock star, which was nice :).

Training is everything!  My previous job was home health/private duty and the new grad program was like assessment & emergency boot camp.  That's the only reason I haven't totally crashed and burned here.  

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NutmeggeRN has 25 years experience as a BSN and specializes in kids.

2 Followers; 6 Articles; 3,996 Posts; 43,278 Profile Views

And let us not forget to share the definition of school nursing

School nursing, a specialized practice of nursing, protects and promotes student health, facilitates optimal development, and advances academic success. School nurses, grounded in ethical and evidence-based practice, are the leaders who bridge health care and education, provide care coordination, advocate for quality student-centered care, and collaborate to design systems that allow individuals and communities to develop their full potential.  Adopted by the NASN Board of Directors February 2017.

Few nurses can do that straight out of the gate.

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laflaca has 5 years experience as a BSN, RN.

388 Posts; 8,849 Profile Views

I sort of understand the spirit of what people are saying when they suggest school nursing as "easier" - on the surface, it is easier.  If you're using "easy" as a shortcut for "lower in acuity with a schedule that can accommodate family and sleep," then yeah, it's easier.  If you would have asked me about school nursing when I was an ED nurse, I probably would have called it "easy."

But now I understand that the difficulty of school nursing sneaks up on you.  It's one thing to see someone who's been bonked in the head in the ED - they're off for imaging, zip zip zip, you know the answer, they go home or not. If you're worried about how the patient looks, you ask another nurse or grab the doc.  It's quite another thing to be alone, no radiology, no lab, no docs, sketchy (if any) medical history available, and people bonking their heads all over the place....which ones are you worried about?  You can't just CT them all, you can't call 911 every time.  Which rashes are you worried about? Which fevers are you worried about?  Which headaches are you worried about?  It's 100% on you. 

I would have freaked out trying to do this as a new grad!  I can understand why other nurses suggest our job to stressed newbies...they can't understand it because they haven't tried it.  Unless you've worked prehospital, it's quite a change in thinking. 

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ruby_jane has 10 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in ICU/community health/school nursing.

4 Followers; 2,784 Posts; 11,570 Profile Views

57 minutes ago, EnoughWithTheIce said:

hazcPLE.jpg

OMG WE ALL NEED THIS!!! 

 

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Rose_Queen has 15 years experience as a BSN, MSN, RN and specializes in OR, education.

9 Followers; 4 Articles; 9,258 Posts; 107,608 Profile Views

Not a school nurse. I’ve always raised my eyebrows at those who recommend jobs with zero at the elbow support (meaning coworkers immediately available for questions/guidance) like school nursing and home health for new grads. What the heck are they supposed to rely on? A telephone that may or may not be answered? 911? Sheesh!

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Flare is a ASN, BSN and specializes in school nursing, ortho, trauma.

2 Followers; 5 Articles; 4,201 Posts; 35,659 Profile Views

It amazes me when people call this a cake job.  They usually don't consider that we work alone typically and that we see dozens of "patients" per day.  Granted, the encounters may not be as intensive as doing full assessment and charting on an inpatient in a hospital setting, but what we lack in bedside heft, we make up in sheer volume.  

Think about your last emergency that you had to contend with.  Did you have anyone to confer with?   Were the calls for "other" office visits piling up while you were tied up?  If your district is anything like mine, then you know - it's a solitary game with just the SN making the calls while having a stream of kids coming to the office for malingering excuses. 

I've had agency subs that have covered my office say to me "I don't know how you manage here, it's so busy!" 

Is there downtime?  Occasionally.  But that's true of everywhere. 

This is a job that requires a person to have strong skills, a good "nurse upbringing", and who can deal with solitude in practice.  

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