When I see the charge nurse jaunting out of the unit while I’m drowning trying to get everything finished before the next shift comes in…
When the docs or NPs won’t put in orders that I want or ask me to do something that I don’t think will be in the patient’s best interest…
Parting words to all my nurses whom I’ve precepted…
Asker Avatar
charlysays asked:
Hey! I start my NICU residency this Monday. I was wondering if there were any books you would recommend for me to read or any other helpful resources/tips? I'd really appreciate it, thanks!

hi there! 

so sorry for the delay in response! click here for a link to another blog post that has some resources i put together for some other nurses in your same position. 

i really like this book and am currently working through it in my down time at work. 

mostly though you’re going to be cramming so many new experiences and information in that brain of yours i’d say just relax a little bit and have it come to you at an easy pace. i was so worried and so consumed with everything and trying to learn as much as i could i didn’t really give myself time to just pause and enjoy the experience of being a new nurse learning about something i loved. i remember thinking so often that so much of what i learned in school didn’t make a lick of sense until i got to experience it first hand.

i hope you’re enjoying it and learning some great things. most importantly, welcome to the world of nicu nursing! 

Asker Avatar
turnyourfacetowardthesun asked:
Hi there! I just graduated nursing school and I have an interview coming up for the NICU :D Can you suggest any ways to prepare/any common questions they might ask? Thanks so much :)

hi there! 

some questions often asked in nursing interviews are (be prepared to give examples of how you’ve done each!):

  • how do you multitask?
  • how do you deal with angry families?
  • how do you deal with a difficult co-worker?
  • how do you advocate for your families?
  • how do you prioritize your care?
  • how do you deal with stress?
  • what was a time that you know something that you did positively affected the care your patient received?
  • talk about a time you saw another nurse, care partner, or doctor doing something incorrectly. how did you handle it?
  • what would you do if someone asked you to do something outside of your scope of practice?

one of my favorite interview questions of all time was, “tell us about your proudest moment in patient care”. it was one of the first questions they asked me and it not only set a great tone for the interview but it also gave me a free pass to talk myself up a bit. 

also just as important is to come to the interview with your own questions. some examples are:

  • what’s your nurse to patient ratio?
  • what is it about your unit that makes your nurses stay year after year?
  • what model of care do you use? (i.e. use of care partners)
  • what qualities do your most successful nurses possess? 

I sure hope this helps! Good luck with your interview!

Asker Avatar
drawinglinesinthesand asked:
Hi, I found your blog through the NICU nursing tag, and I'm just wondering if I could get some advice! I'm looking to become a NICU nurse and I'm just wondering what steps need to be taken to become one (schooling, degrees, certificates, how long it usually takes etc). There's lots of information out there about general nursing, not so much about specialized. Any advice at all would absolutely help, thank you so much!

hi there!

so sorry it’s taken me a while to get to all the wonderful “asks” in my inbox. things have been a little crazy in my world. 

here are the basic points to answer your question:

  1. get your nursing degree! =) to get in the door at a hospital you’ll need at least an associates degree but know that a lot of institutions are requiring at least a bachelor’s now.  http://www.aacn.nche.edu/ccne-accreditation/accredited-programs 
  2. get a job! i went for a competitive nurse residency program and it was the best decision of my life. these programs are specifically designed to transition the new graduate nurse to professional nursing. http://directory.ccnecommunity.org/reports_residency/resaccprog.asp   i was able to choose a pediatrics track and then was matched to the nicu. if this isn’t something that’s available to you finding a job in labor and delivery, pediatrics, or any icu experience will generally be enough to get you in the door. 
  3. certifications required are your basic life support and then once you’re a nicu nurse your neonatal resuscitation provider which teaches you how to recover an infant in distress in the delivery room setting. some hospitals will want you to have pediatric advanced life support as well but i’d wait on this until you know for sure. 
  4. you can get a certification in neonatal nursing but i believe you have to actually work in the nicu for at least 2 years before you can sit for this test. http://www.nccwebsite.org/certification/Exam-detail.aspx?eid=8

I hope this helps! if you have any more questions, don’t hesitate to throw them my way!

The Double-Edged Sword

A very good read. 

Don’t you just like, I don’t know… hold babies all day long?

Yes.

I hold a baby when I hand him to his mother for the first time, three weeks after his birth date.

I hold a baby when teaching a new mother how to breastfeed her child.

I hold a baby to feed him, to rock him to sleep, to bathe him and bundle him.

I hold a baby when morphine and walking the halls 24 hours a day are the only things that will quiet him down while he’s withdrawing from the illegal drugs his mother took.

I hold a baby’s arm still when my fellow nurse inserts an IV.

I hold a baby’s head still while we bag oxygenated air back into his tiny lungs.

I hold a baby when he has no family to hold him.

I hold a baby when he takes his last breaths because his parents didn’t make it to the hospital in time.

I hold a baby when I’m placing his lifeless, tiny hands in plaster to make a keepsake for his parents… because there is no baby to hold anymore.

Yes.

I hold babies all day long. 

(via whatshouldwecallnicunursing)

It’s been a rough couple of weeks for several reasons on this list… Taking a short break to recharge and will be back ASAP.

Thank you all for your continued following and sharing.