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Struggling New Grad...

Nurses   (3,147 Views | 13 Replies)

ohsosarah20 has 3 years experience as a BSN.

452 Profile Views; 14 Posts

I graduated just over a month ago and I passed NCLEX on June 2. I have a job in home health and it's not my thing. I'm hoping to get a new job here very soon. I'm terrified of caring for patients on my own! What got every one else through being a new graduate? I don't know if I just feel knocked down from my job that's making me feel worse or what but I'm absolutely scared to be on my own as a nurse! :/

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BSNbeDONE specializes in Med/Surg, LTACH, LTC, Home Health.

2,317 Posts; 24,755 Profile Views

Did you not have an orientation period in which it was explained that you would be on your own? I would expect that it would have lasted until you felt comfortable being out in the field. What exactly frightens you? Is it the care that you are required to provide? Going into strange environments? Are you doing shift work at the home or are you making visits? What were your perceptions of home health and why did you accept? The only time I felt as you do was (1), while in orientation with vent patients:nailbiting: (which I actually got the hang of and stayed with it for about 3 years); (2), having to leave bed bound patients in the home alone (I hope the powers-that-be have stiffened the rules about this now); and (3), going back up in the boonies on not even a driveway, but a rugged up-hill path at 9pm for a teaching session of Lantus insulin administration (this is the one that caused me to walk away from home health).

What I will say is that if a patient is at home, he/she has been determined to be stable enough to receive nursing care at their place of residence and if the condition changes, call the physician and 9-1-1, your manager (not necessarily in that order) depending on what's going on with the patient. Barring any extreme circumstances, you will get the hang of it with time because it is only one patient at a time with a set routine which you control for the most part, especially if it's shift work.

Hang in there! Unlike acute care, home health is more predictable most of the time and will get better for you once you overcome your own anxieties about working one your own. You are definitely not alone, though. Your valuable resources are only a phone call and a few minutes away.:yes:

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CrunchRN has 25 years experience as a ADN, RN and specializes in Clinical Research, Outpt Women's Health.

1 Follower; 4,202 Posts; 30,594 Profile Views

That is a very tough job for a new grad. Just apply, apply, apply.

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ohsosarah20 has 3 years experience as a BSN.

14 Posts; 452 Profile Views

Definitely applying...I actually told them I wasn't comfortable yet and wanted more training days. I'm more feeling like I don't have the support I need from the company and the patients family I care for. Hoping for a new job soon...this is rough :/

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sallyrnrrt is a ADN, RN and specializes in critical care, ER,ICU, CVSURG, CCU.

1 Follower; 2,387 Posts; 26,929 Profile Views

Of course it was 1972.... But I graduated from my diploma hospital nursing program at 11am, on a Saturday, and was charge nurse in CCU, that evening at 3-11p shift

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sallyrnrrt is a ADN, RN and specializes in critical care, ER,ICU, CVSURG, CCU.

1 Follower; 2,387 Posts; 26,929 Profile Views

....sorry, but back then, I was educated and prepared..... It is not the same world... In nursing education

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tcvnurse has 15 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Thoracic Cardiovasc ICU Med-Surg.

249 Posts; 7,841 Profile Views

Honestly? You have no business being in home health without at least a year of experience behind you. You are out there, all alone, with only your nursing skills to back you up. And as a new grad, you need that extra support that comes with working WITH ( as in right next to you) other nurses.

Because there will definitely be times when you have no cell service. Or you are driving around getting lost while looking for your patient's house. Or, worse still, you will walk in on someone that is really really SICK and you will have to convince them to go to the hospital when most old people would rather listen to Eminem at top volume that go to a hospital ED.

I worked home health for 6 years and it was MUCH MUCH harder than being a hospital nurse.

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558 Posts; 8,952 Profile Views

You should be terrified as a new nurse doing home health. But that is water under the bridge - where you are is where you are. Some advice: 1) Use your common sense - always. If something doesn't look right - wound, med, patient symptom - it isn't. Escalate at once.; 2) Know your resources. Have someone you can call if you have a question. Technology is your friend - if something doesn't look right, take a picture and show it to someone who knows which end is up. 3) Know where you are in the grand scheme of things. As long as you maintain some decent situational awareness about patients spiraling downward, you really can't screw up that badly. They are old and sick to begin with...

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NurseSpeedy has 18 years experience as a ADN, LPN, RN.

1,397 Posts; 18,640 Profile Views

Honestly? You have no business being in home health without at least a year of experience behind you. You are out there, all alone, with only your nursing skills to back you up. And as a new grad, you need that extra support that comes with working WITH ( as in right next to you) other nurses.

I agree with you that home care is no place for a new grad. However, in today's job market some new nurses don't have too many options as to who is willing to hire them. Facilities want experienced nurses that they don't have to spent thousands of dollars in training and orientation and if they can get a nurse with prior experience, the new grad isn't going to get the offer.

I recently worked in home care with a client that switched from a major staffing organization that required a couple years of experience in order to hire their nurses to a smaller agency because she was sick of not getting staffing for her case. The smaller agencies that she went with hired anyone with a license and a pulse. Many were RNs that were new grads trying to get some kind of experience and income and the agencies could fill the slot with an RN or an LPN so they took the job. I had some nurses that I worked with that had never done some of the PRN orders that were in place for the client if necessary on a live person (only a manikin in school). If there was to be an emergency...luckily it never happened. These nurses had no intention of staying with the agency, but they needed something to do until a facility would take a chance on training them. I personally would never have felt comfortable as a new grad being placed alone with a patient without any past experience to draw from, but I was fortunate to start my career when facilities were hungry for nurses, not when there was an overabundance of nurses applying for the same job.

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roser13 has 17 years experience as a ASN, RN and specializes in Med/Surg, Ortho, ASC.

6,504 Posts; 51,430 Profile Views

Did you not have an orientation period in which it was explained that you would be on your own? I would expect that it would have lasted until you felt comfortable being out in the field. What exactly frightens you? Is it the care that you are required to provide? Going into strange environments? Are you doing shift work at the home or are you making visits? What were your perceptions of home health and why did you accept

Outside of some acute care settings, extended orientation is pretty much unheard of. I get so frustrated by those who advocate for and/or hire new grads into home health.

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Remy Ox has 4 years experience and specializes in SIV/VMER Nurse [Portugal], SubAcute [US].

52 Posts; 1,493 Profile Views

Good luck to you. Be careful and use your knowledge and have confidence in self. if you don't feel comfortable call supervisor. Protect yourself and patient. You will find another job

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Scrubs_n_sirens has 6 years experience as a MSN, RN and specializes in Flight Nursing, Emergency, Forensics, SANE, Trauma.

136 Posts; 2,080 Profile Views

....sorry, but back then, I was educated and prepared..... It is not the same world... In nursing education

Yup. The rest of us are idiots. Now where's my things, you know the ones I was entitled to? What's this? A stethoscope? What's that for?

Oh and you there, you massively expensive bachelors degree that is going to be expected of me by 2020... I need to use that diploma paper to write notes to myself to not forget to brush my teeth since I'm inept and obviously unprepared.

-_-

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