How is my clinical going?

September 25, 2015

Hey friends,

For today's post I thought I would share with you how my clinical is going. I am really excited about this clinical because it is my senior year leadership rotation. Which is just a fancy way of saying my preceptorship. For those of you who do not know, a preceptorship is sort of like an internship. I follow one specific nurse's schedule and complete 144 hours. That is a total of 12 12-hour shifts. My previous clinical rotations were eight hour shifts and the extra four hours really do make a difference. 

For my preceptorship, I was lucky enough to be placed on days at an ICU. I have never been in an ICU setting before and I am honestly loving it! I love that there is a multitude of learning opportunities. After each shift with my nurse, who is awesome, I ask her what I should look up to get better acquainted with the type of patients we see or with procedures that are common. Some items I have looked up so far are ventilators, COPD, ARDS, ABGs, and Arterial sheaths. (Maybe to piggy back off of my concept map post, I will create one on a typical patient I have seen in the ICU.)

Another great thing about my rotation this semester is that I finally feel appreciated as a student nurse. The unit I am on is so welcoming of me that I feel like a new grad who is getting oriented to the unit. I love knowing I am not being looked down upon. My nurse is also amazing in the fact she seeks out opportunities for me. I have been able to perform a new skill or see a new procedure each time I have been there. The first shift was in-line suctioning for a patient on a ventilator and placing a foley catheter on a male. (I previously have only inserted on females.) The next shift I got to see an arterial sheath removed and handle the extensive post removal monitoring. And for my last shift I got to see a TEE with cardioversion. This specific patient was in a flutter and we shocked with 50J then 100J to get back in sinus rhythm. Unfortunately the doctor did not let push the shock button, but it was still neat to watch on the monitor.

I have even grown as a nurse-to-be. My preceptor really pushes me to take a more hands on approach with my patient care. Because we are 2:1 nurse ratio, she has me focus solely on one patient. This means that I am receiving report, completing assessments, charting in the computer and on paper, speaking with doctors, administering medications or treatments, and giving hand off report at the end of the shift. I was nervous in the beginning because I have never learned how to give report nor did I feel comfortable speaking with a doctor. Now that I have done it once or twice, I feel like I am getting into a groove. 

I am excited to update you guys later on how it is going or how I am growing as a nurse-to-be. I hope clinicals are good for you as well. Feel free to share with me.

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