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Transferring into acute care- L&D

Nurses   (223 Views | 5 Replies)

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I have been a RN Case manager in Home Health the past 7 years. Before that, I was a pediatric floor nurse for my first 6 years of nursing. As an RN extern while finishing up my BSN, I worked in Labor and Delivery. 
my dream was always to become a L&D nurse and eventually a Nurse Midwife. Life happened and my career went a different path. Now I’m facing a burnout in home health and desperate to return to my passion. how can get my feet in the door to labor and delivery, something I haven’t touched since nursing school over 13 years ago? 
Any suggestions would be appreciated! 

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

4 Followers; 2,761 Posts; 11,360 Profile Views

If there's a L&D specialty board this might be a good ask for them (look under nurse specialties).

In general the advice I've given and been given: Join the national specialty group, mostly because that gives access to the local L&D specialty group. Network.

Find out what certifications are valuable and obtain (on your own time, at your own cost). I am betting ACLS is; if you need PALS or PEARS you can likely get that at a hospital.

Find some CEs that focus on this specialty, including but not limited to a best-practice conference - you'll learn about those locations when you join the specialty group. Attend one on your own time and your own dime.

Consider taking a position in a hospital that would provide you a natural path into L&D - the women's specialty unit comes to mind but again, someone with boots on the ground could best advise you.

Finally - L&D is what I thought I wanted, too, right out of nursing school. I became a nurse during the recession of 09 when nurses weren't leaving and women who had the means to weren't planning to have babies. A lot of nurses got sent home because the census at our private hospitals were low. The public hospital had a ton of women giving birth and those nurses never got censused out. So...do your research about birth rates in your county and where those are happening!

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367 Posts; 1,917 Profile Views

You'd need NRP more than PALS...

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klone has 14 years experience as a MSN, RN and specializes in Women's Health/OB Leadership.

4 Followers; 13,509 Posts; 117,414 Profile Views

If you're new to L&D, you will not be expected to have NRP, ACLS, or fetal heart monitoring. They will provide that for you on the job, it's fine.

Yes, it's absolutely possible to get into L&D with a background in a different area of nursing. You just need to put yourself out there - try to get nurse manager names/emails and send them a personalized email. Don't focus so much on "L&D is my dream job!!" (because we hear that all the time), but rather, focus on what you can bring to the table, and why your prior nursing experience makes you a valuable candidate. 

Good luck!

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

4 Followers; 2,761 Posts; 11,360 Profile Views

On 1/29/2020 at 12:08 PM, klone said:

Don't focus so much on "L&D is my dream job!!" (because we hear that all the time), but rather, focus on what you can bring to the table, and why your prior nursing experience makes you a valuable candidate. 

Good luck!

That is some awesome advice, klone!

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Nurse SMS has 9 years experience as a MSN, RN and specializes in Critical Care; Cardiac; Professional Development.

4 Followers; 6,154 Posts; 48,479 Profile Views

If you are in a major metroplex area also investigate whether any of your large hospital systems are starting to have fellowships or transition programs for experienced nurses who want to change specialties.

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