Saturday, March 22, 2008

4.25 shifts left

I have a hard time believing that my 436 hour internship at the small-town Emerg is almost complete. I have 52 hours left, and will be complete by the 2nd of April.

I must admit I've learned a lot about nursing and about myself in this rotation. Here is a small list:

1) I enjoy emergency nursing
2) I've learned about assessment, more then I ever thought I would
3) There are many ways to go about nursing, and many factors to consider before notifying the physician... and I still have not developed an instinct as to what is important and what isn't, although I am learning.
4) Most people who come to the emergency department do not have emergencies
5) I'm still having a hard time determining when to hook someone up to telemetry, and when I don't need to. ABC emergencies of course, but sometimes there are other reasons, and that's why it's confusing.
6) A lot of things I have applied to the emergency room I DID NOT learn in nursing school. I have learned most of my "emergency" component through the pre-hospital first responder and first aid courses.
7) I can size up a cervical collar and place it on a person better then some of the seasoned nurses.
8) I can get in most IV's that I have tried. There have been a few (that I can count on 1 hand) that I have tried twice and have not succeeded. It was when I learned how to do IVs that I felt like a real nurse.
9) I'm scared to be looking after a seriously ill patient by myself. I'm glad there is a team of nurses around, and I'm glad I'm going into a job where I have backup for at least the first couple months until I feel more comfortable.
10) Although non-rebreather masks are used a LOT in prehospital care, they are not used much in the ED.
11) There are some patients whom I will like, some whom I will dislike. Either way, I will treat them professionally and with respect for their person.
12) There will be sometimes where I will disagree with the treatment plan of the physician. For this I have advocated for my patient. Sometimes I will not win, that doesn't mean I don't try to get my point across.

This is a short list, and I'm sure I have forgotten something. I'm still not 100% sure of my place in nursing, and continue with my internal struggle learning to accept that this is my career path. However, I have found a way to provide help to people in need. That was a goal I endeavored to do with any profession I entered. For this, I am proud.


ajern said...

I hope that you're getting more and more comfortable in your new role as an ER RN. I start my first day as a new RN in the ER of a fairly good sized hospital. I'm crapping my pants, but am excited at the same time. It's good to know that I'm not the only person going through all this and that it's normal to feel scared or unsure of my abilities. Good luck!

ajern said...

I meant the I start tomorrow! LOL See how nervous I am, I can't even type right! ;)