No, really - what is your EMERGENCY?

This used to be the journal of a nursing student at a prestigious 4 year university that will still remain unnamed. This is now the journal of a Registered Nurse working in an Emergency Department in a major US city. All names have been changed to protect the stupid and the mean. There is no educational value in this journal, sometimes it will be downright mean and catty - this is where I come to vent!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

New Clinical Assignment

Well, my 6 weeks in the ED are over and I will now spend 6 weeks in the ICU. I am not happy to be leaving the ED, but I am happier to be going to the ICU instead of the surgical floor as was originally planned. Not that I have an issue with the surgical floor, it is just that I spent a whole summer on medicine/surgical floors and I have had enough of it. I know that it is not what I want to do - heck I already took a job in an ED for after I graduate.

I will miss "theme days" in the ED - you know things like "boil on my buttocks day" or "kidney stone day" or "random laceration day" - anytime we got more than 2 of the same complaint (other than kids with upper respiratory issues or runny noses) it turned into a theme day.

I will miss joking around with the PA's in the ED. They were a good group of guys and their students were hilarious - talk about clueless! But you could talk them into just about anything - even helping you give a soap suds enema. Hey, they need to know what they are asking the nurses to do for their patients!

I will miss my preceptor who ate constantly but never seemed to gain any weight. And the fact that she always made me give the Toradol shots to the patients with elephant tough skin.

I will miss the patients who come in complaining of nausea and vomiting for a week and immediately ask for something to eat - from the hospital cafeteria. Believe me, that is definitely not going to help! Or the middle age men who come in with chest pain and want to go smoke a cigarette while they wait for their labs to come back. And the crack users who come in with chest pain but they don't do drugs.

In all honesty, I am in serious nursing school burnout. My "Give a sh!t" level has dropped to an all time low. I just want to graduate, take my boards and get to work. We have a series of interdisciplinary sessions with the other health affairs students at my university coming up in the next couple of weeks. I'm sure that my bitterness will not be evident at all as I deal with 2nd year medical students and dental students and social work students. We had a patient safety seminar with the 4th year medical students last week and it was all I could do to not strangle one of my arrogant group members.

So that has been my beef over the past couple of weeks. I have spent 2 years in nursing school hearing about how much it sucks to be a nurse right now because of the shortage and I will be overworked and underappreciated from day one. Well you know what? Since this is the only nursing world I will probably know (I don't see an end to the shortage anytime soon - self licking ice cream cone - people quit because there is a shortage and working conditions suck faster than they can be replaced thereby perpetuating the shortage) shouldn't I go into it with a positive attitude and with optimism? Shouldn't I be looking forward to my first job as a challenge and not a burden? Shouldn't I be excited about working hard, not already dreading it and wishing it were easier? If I am always going to have 6-7 patients, shouldn't I get used to that from the beginning and not just constantly wish that it were easier? That isn't to say that we shouldn't push for more nurses and better nurse to patient ratios and better work environments and more pay and better benefits - but lets not start off on a bad foot with our CHOSEN profession.

Ok, enough of a rant - and now back to my Spring Break!

Oh yeah - one more thing - I hate wearing all white scrubs. I only have to do this for 6 more weeks and then I am going to burn my white scrubs since my new job does not require them. At least the hospital I am in now has some real old school nurses who still wear the skirts and hose so I don't stick out quite so much as I did in the unversity teaching hospital.


  • At 4:26 AM, Blogger Kevin said…

    oh, ran across a scrub shop at grossmont center mall and they had st patty day scrubs.

  • At 5:04 PM, Blogger Nurse-to-Be said…

    I have to wear hunter green, which admittedly is better than white, but I still refuse to wear that color when school is over. It would make me feel like a dumb student instead of a 'real' nurse.


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