November 23, 2015

And I'm now .500 on IVs.  It infiltrated.

Oh well, the other nurse I was working with--yes, Virginia, I was not cancelled last night!--gave me a crash course in tricky dorsal hand vein sticks.

November 22, 2015

Cancelled again

Cancelled on a Saturday...a Saturday night, no less!  But I know the census has been down lately, and as a float pool per-diem I'm technically first on the chopping block--the only ones that can get cut before me are those requesting first cancel.  Staff going into OT are also technically supposed to be cut before me to, but they tend to let most of them stay.

So two nights lost.  I'm a little anxious but reminded myself that when designing the budget, I did prepare for things like this to happen.  I could lose up to 4, even 5 days in a month and we'd still be OK.  We'd have nothing going into savings that month, but all household expenses would be covered.

Mind you, I'd rather not lose the days in the first place.

So I called the charge nurse this morning and asked her what the likelihood of my being cancelled  on NOC was, and if it was high, could I work a PM shift instead?  She reassured me that I should be working NOC tonight.  Now whether that will really happen--after all, Friday was supposed to be guaranteed as I was swapping shifts to cover for a vacationing staff member, and I still got cancelled--I won't know until 2100 tonight, which is the deadline for me to be called off.

Should I get cancelled, I will go and make myself available for Monday PM shift.  Monday was going to be a day off as Tuesday is a clinical day.  But if I'm losing Sunday too, I need to make it up.  Even though that means I will get about 4 hours of sleep between work and clinical.

I may decide to put in for Monday anyway.  I am only scheduled to work 3 days this week because of my preceptorship and the Thanksgiving Day holiday, but since I lost 2 days last week, it may be a good idea to grab this extra day if it's available.  Though that means I'll have 4 hours of sleep between work shifts AND 4 hours of sleep between work and clinical.


The permanent job is looking better and better.  Fortunately, this ED preceptorship is finally happening so once this is finished I can start looking.

November 21, 2015

Ups and Downs

Up:  I have started a preceptorship in the an actual ED nurse.  Not as psych liaison, not as a psych nurse providing psych care to ED patients, but as an actual ED nurse.  I completed the ED course and this is the clinical component.  The school was able to place me in a hospital in my organization, so that helped tremendously, since I'm familiar with the EMR and how things work in general.

It was funny.  The nurses kept interrogating me about how the psych areas work.  I was happy to explain, since I think EDs in general don't understand how psych units work.  This is not a slur upon the ED, just that it is a different world.

Anyway, I'm two days in and so far so good.  I get a different preceptor each day and both have been fantastic.  I can only hope the next five will be too.

Down:  Cancelled again.  Which is unsettling as not only was I confirmed for work, I was specifically signed up to work to cover someone taking a day off.  So whether it's because the census is down, they found another nurse to cover, or the original person took the day off, I don't know.

Down:  And I hadn't worked earlier that day, so it was truly a zero hour day.

Up:  Financially, I'll be OK, I think.  This paycheck will have just under 64 hours, so I wonder what my take-home pay will be.  Hopefully not as bad as I think, and I have made provisions for such times when I might end up short in the pay department.

Down:  But you know I'm still anxious as hell about it.  I like some stability in my schedule.

Down:  Though the downside of stability in my schedule will be a pay cut.

Up:  Which may be worth it for the stable schedule's anxiolytic effects.

Up:  I started my first IV, and on my first try to!   77 year old man who was blessed with decent veins, all things given.  I admit, I was the most terrified about being able to do this, since coming into this, my record involving inserting needles in veins was 0 for 1.

Up:  I'm enjoying the ED so far.  Mind you, the first day was pretty slow, and on the second day my patients turned not to not be high acuity.  And I'm only dealing with 3 patients at a time (thank you, California ratio laws).  So I know this isn't necessarily representative of the norm.

Down:  I really need to review prioritization of needs.  ABC and Maslow are generally accurate, but there are times when something may take a bit of a higher priority to a C.  Like the possibility of brain attack.

Up:  I'm considering what I can do with my new skills once I finish the preceptorship.  Maybe ED, maybe Urgent Care, maybe full-time Psych-Medical.

Down:  I can't really make any moves until I finish this that means January.

Up and Down:  I learned that when you update your resume on a career website, even if you're not actively looking, recruiters come out of the woodwork.  Though not all jobs I'm being pitched are what I'm looking for.

November 13, 2015

"Although you have met the minimum requirements for the position, there are several other applicants who have qualifications, experience, and other relevant background that more closely fit the profile of the available position."

The e-mail arrived. I am a little disappointed, of course...but if I look at myself, my career and my skills, I suppose they are right. I am coming from a nursing area that really doesn't have a lot of--for lack of better phrasing--medical skills. It's not as though I'm a L&D or LTAC nurse switching over.

It's times like this that make me consider whether I should pursue a full-time psych-medical position. 

Oh well. I'm home tonight thanks to a last-minute cancellation at work. At least I get 2 hours of pay so it's not an entire loss.

November 10, 2015

Strike 2

I was rejected for the 2nd new specialty position.  I haven't yet received the e-mail telling me why, but I'm sure it'll be here soon.  Oh well.  At least they didn't leave me hanging for weeks about it...just one week.

I don't know if I'll give it a third try, as there's another position up.  Or maybe I'll apply for one of the psych openings instead.

Or maybe not.  I've secured enough hours at my main job until 2016, and my preceptorship is finally taking place.  So maybe I'll get through both of those and then see what happens.

November 3, 2015

Try, try again

Another new specialty position was posted, and I applied for it.  Fortunately, their system lets me copy my most recent application, so I did just that, tweaked it to reflect the current posting, and fired away.  I think I may be a little late--it looked like the closing date was 11/2 and today is 11/3...but what have I got to lose by trying?   I did make a note on my calendar to check that organization's website weekly, so maybe I'll hit a posting on time.

There were also a few behavioral health postings there, but I'm going to wait and see what happens with this one.  I'm also not going to apply for anything behavioral health until January.

The psych liaison position is very interesting.  I had a good orientation, learned a lot about doing intake, and am now certified to place people on psychiatric holds...well, only at that facility, anyway.  I'm not allowed to go to the local Wal-Mart and wield my new powers, no matter how much they may be needed.  Anyhow, I haven't had a chance to pick up any more liaison shifts there just yet because my schedule from now to December 31st is a mess.  Going to try though.

I totally forgot about the Spanish class...I have until 11/19 to finish it though, so I think I'm going to cram as much as I can, then download whatever I can so I have it for the future.  I also have to start brushing up on the emergency department stuff, as the preceptorship finally has a start date of 11/18.