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Where to go after the ICU?

I graduated with my BSN 2 years ago and went immediately into a CTICU for one year and then an MSICU for my second year. ICU is all I know and although I do love many MANY aspects of the care I provide, I am feeling like this specialty may not be a sustainable, long term career for me on a personal level. I am curious - what other nursing jobs/specialties/areas have ICU nurses happily transitioned to and why?

Hoosier_RN specializes in dialysis.

why do you feel it may not be sustainable? What do you feel drawn to, if anything,  nursing related? Just asking so I can answer with some thoughtful insight

2 hours ago, Hoosier_RN said:

why do you feel it may not be sustainable? What do you feel drawn to, if anything,  nursing related? Just asking so I can answer with some thoughtful insight

So over the past two years I have worked mostly night shift and I thought I had been managing it relatively well but recently I’ve been able to get a few weeks of day shift every so often and I didn’t even realize how sleep deprived and just unhealthy I was until I had a chance to do better. Even my close friends and partner have said I’m much more of myself when I’m on a dayshift sleep schedule and I do feel the difference, I’m far less irritable and I have the energy for exercise and other habits I’ve been skipping out on for lack of energy. It's really made me wonder about how if I had a job with a more routine day shift schedule maybe I’d be a happier healthier person. Maybe the rotating between days and nights (which is inevitable I know my ICU) just isn’t sustainable for me to keep doing long term. The stress is just kinda catching up to me too. 
 

As far as what I feel drawn to in the ICU: I really love how the autonomy + critical thinking allows me to directly influence my patients outcome. I feel really confident in all these skills I’ve built and feel like it would be a shame to lose the critical thinking entirely but I know outside of the ICU that piece may be lost a little. I also really enjoy having end of life patients (I’m a touchy feely person) and I’ve been told lots that I handle the more difficult vulnerable family moments and conversations pretty well. But I fear that if I left ICU to go into Hospice I would lose a lot of those critical care skills that I have worked so hard to learn (like it was all for nothing if I don’t continue on this ICU path). 
 

@hooseier_RN thanks for asking! 🙂

Hoosier_RN specializes in dialysis.

How soon does a dayshift ICU position look to be in your future?  If it's a long way off, go the hospice route. Your health is the important thing 

3 hours ago, Hoosier_RN said:

How soon does a dayshift ICU position look to be in your future?  If it's a long way off, go the hospice route. Your health is the important thing 

@Hoosier_RN dayshift is at least a year away in my current ICU and if we decide to move cities and I decide to pursue a new ICU there, it would be even longer as I would lose any seniority (which is typically how it goes for dayshift).

Hoosier_RN specializes in dialysis.

Then think about your end goal. Where do you see yourself 1, 5, 10 years from now. If ICU skills aren't a part of that, let it go. If you want CRNA, ACNP or something that would require the skill set, you may need to suck it up with that 1 or more year wait. I have 10 years ICU experience,  and 17 years of other things. I don't regret ICU, but I don't regret experiencing other things either. Just look at your end goal, you'll find your answer

I have friends that hurt their back and were tired of the hard physical labour of adult ICU, and they went in neonatal ICU or paediatric ICU.

Also a step 'back' in intensity is Recovery (post anaesthetic), or Anaesthetics instead.

Everyone I know who made those transitions, looked heaps healthier and happier afterwards!!

ICUman specializes in Cardiac Cath Lab.

5 years of ICU here.... switched to Interventional Radiology and Cath Lab. Never looking back. Perks are way better. Literally everything is better. So glad I did it. 

PaSSiNGaS specializes in Nurse Anesthesiology.

Go to CRNA school

On ‎7‎/‎21‎/‎2020 at 8:34 PM, ICUman said:

5 years of ICU here.... switched to Interventional Radiology and Cath Lab. Never looking back. Perks are way better. Literally everything is better. So glad I did it. 

I am looking to quit ICU and go into the Cath Lab as well.  I have worked in ICU nights for the last 4 years, I am ready to leave.  Any tips on how to make this transition easy?

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