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What is more desirable to land a job in pediatrics?

PICU   (365 Views | 1 Replies)
by kusters kusters, BSN (New) New

99 Profile Views; 2 Posts

A little about me,

I have wanted to work in pediatrics since the end of my senior year of nursing school. I was fortunate to land a job in a Burn ICU that took care of adults and children. During one of my shifts I had a pediatric patient. It was that shift  found I loved peds, never thought I would say that, and critical care. Well fast forward and I have been a nurse for a little over year and did not land a pediatric job. I never realized how coveted the speciality was until I interviewed with no success. I found they wanted experience before you had it. 

I have 8 months of Adult ICU under me and 6 months of Adult CVIMCU. 

I am currently working for a hospital that allows you to shadow any unit after you have completed a year on the unit you're hired on. I am thinking of asking to shadow in either our NICU/peds (very small unit, not critical cases at  all) or the ED that sees kids and adults. 

We also have an opportunity to train up to CVICU after our year mark, if our manager feels we are ready. However it is a two year commitment (no money would be paid back if left earlier, but we wouldn't be hired back). So I want to make sure I am making the right decision. I do miss the ICU but I also know I miss the pediatric realm. I also do have a great floor and co-workers. So leaving would be hard, but I know my passion is with the younger population. 

So my question is what looks more desirable to pediatric hospitals? An Adult ED, an Adult CVICU, or a very small NICU/pediatric unit? We have two bigger children hospitals in our area that the kids get transported to from the ED. However, it is almost impossible to get hired there if you don't have some form of pediatric care as an RN.

Thank you for taking the time to read this!



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adventure_rn is a BSN and specializes in NICU, PICU.

3 Followers; 1 Article; 1,327 Posts; 19,136 Profile Views

On 2/18/2020 at 3:47 PM, kusters said:

However, it is almost impossible to get hired there if you don't have some form of pediatric care as an RN.

If that's truly the case, then it would probably be best to take the NICU/peds job, right?

Honestly, there is no right answer because every hospital and every unit has different hiring practices. For instance, some PICU managers might prefer a candidate with adult ICU experience, while others would prefer a candidate with general peds/NICU experience.

It's unclear from your post--did you unsuccessfully apply to the peds hospitals as a new grad, or did you apply after gaining experience?

If you only applied as a new grad, I'd start by reapplying to the peds hospitals before you sign any kind of long-term commitment at your current job. You may have a better chance of getting hired as an experienced nurse than you did as a new grad, even if your experience isn't in peds. You'll notice that most job postings will say something like 'one year of nursing experience required, one year of pediatrics preferred.' You can still get hired for those jobs, even without peds experience; there simply aren't enough candidates with prior peds experience to fill all of those positions.

If I were in your shoes, I'd start by casting a wide net and applying to a handful of jobs at each of the peds hospitals (PICU, step-down, whatever sounds interesting to you). Any acute care job in one of the peds hospitals will be more advantageous to your end goal than the options you've laid out. I'd also work on writing a stellar cover letter for each unit describing why you're interested in peds and what skills/experience you could bring to that unit.

If you try that and still can't get hired, then circle back to this topic.

Edited by adventure_rn

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