what would you suggest?

Specialties NICU



I'm a senior in my nursing program and will be graduating in May (God Willing!). I currently work as a phlebotomist and 90% of the time draw the babies in the NICU. I really like it there and I try to look at the equiptment and what is going on with the babies. I listen closely to report if I am there to just try and pick up on what the nurses are saying about the babies. After starting my peds rotation this semester, I really feel like the NICU is where I would like to work after graduation. My current clinical instructor is making an effort to give me infant patients since she knows my plans. Next semester we do a preceptorship and I want to do mine in the NICU. If I don't get NICU what other unit would you all suggest that would give me a good foundation for going into the NICU as a new grad? I know most of the learning will start once I'm out there in the real world but I would like to do whatever I can to make the transition easier. Any advice you can give would be appreciated! Thanks



6,620 Posts

Our unit generally looks for people with experience in maternity (post partum, L&D, antepartum) or pediatrics. Either give you some advantages when you start in the NICU.

Specializes in NICU.

Have NICU as your first choice, and then, if I were you, I'd stick to one of the following (in this order): Well Baby nursery, Mother/Baby, Pediatrics, PICU. Try to stay close to the babies if at all possible- Well Baby nursery is sort of like med/surg for babies. You'll learn all about what a normal infant looks like, routines for the unit, and we do a lot of similar things (like starting IV's, giving antibiotics, feeding, assessments, transfers, teaching to parents, etc.). Mother/Baby is not as baby-intensive, but you'll still get an opportunity to be around the babies and help to teach the moms the same things you'll be teaching parents in the NICU (though on a less-narrow level- stuff like discharge teaching, normal newborn care, breastfeeding, etc.). Pediatrics is next on my list, but you won't be working with just babies; Peds is to age 17 or so, so you'll likely be working with a wide variety of ages. Still helpful (all experience is helpful!) but not as applicable TECHNICALLY. I recommend PICU last only because I don't think as a student you should be in such a fast-paced environment...there is PLENTY of time for you to go rushing head-first into intensive care once you've graduated.

Good luck! Let us know what you get! :)

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