Thursday, January 26, 2006

Whiny McWhiner, Student Nurse

So I just have to vent for a minute. ..

I started back to school this week. My last semester of nursing school. I'll wait for the applause to die down. Okay, so anyway. This semester is Advanced Med/Surg and we do a lot of clinical hours for it. Twelve 12 hour days. These are to be spent in critical care-type units such as ICU/CCU, CVICU, ER, etc. So, our instructor just assigned us to certain groups based on location (altogether not a bad concept, but I'm willing to drive 10 extra miles for the best experience). Ten lucky souls get to do all 12 days in 389-bed facility that has a 40 bed ICU/CVICU and a level-2 trauma center. The other twenty of us spend 6 days in a 367-bed facility with a 36 bed ICU/CVICU and a level-2 trauma center and the other 6 days in a 115-bed facility with a 7 bed ICU, no CVICU and a 4 bed, unranked ER. This seems reprehensible to me. Not only that we are doing advanced med/surg clinical rotations in such a small hospital with 10 students there at a time, but that the experience between the various students in the class is GUARANTEED to vary greatly. Now, don't get me wrong. I am aware that clinical experiences vary among students that go to all the same clinical days in the same hospitals. It depends on what kind of patient(s) you get that day. But, to virtually guarantee that we will have such different experiences seems just wrong. We all pay the same amount for the class (well, not all of us, some of us are not eligible for financial aid, but don't get me started on that).

Then, as if that's not enough, this small hospital has a policy that we have to be drug-tested before doing clinicals there. And, like most things in life, it ain't free. It costs $35 and guess who gets to foot the bill? That's right. Us. So, not only do I have to do 72 hours of clinical in podunkville, most likely sharing a patient with another student (or two), but I have to pay more money for this wonderful experience. I feel so blessed.


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