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42 getting back into the nursing game

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Hi all, I just discovered this discussion site when looking up what it's like to be a prison nurse? Interview Tues. I stopped work as a school nurse for various reasons and want to get more clinical. The kids are older and I'd like to get back into it but its hard to find hospitals willing to train an older nurse. I wouldn't mind working in any number of areas but it's just trying to find someone willing to train me. I'm interested in wound care, urgent, mother baby and even Labor and Delivery. Do you have any advice? Prison care is more like urgent care so I figured it might put me in the right direction. Im also 30 credits away from getting my BSN.
I don't work at a prison, but one facility that I work at has a lot of patients that have been in prison. 95% of the patients have psych issues and are very manipulative. There was a point in time when I considered prison nursing as well, but working in an area where a large amount of the patients are manipulative is MENTALLY EXHAUSTING. I've had to "wise up" and have more of a tough exterior. I would never act standoffish to the non-psych little old ladies with CHF that I have cared for, but with these patients, you just can't be that open and take what they say at face value. I've had to develop stronger confidence in my assessment skills because they fake symptoms. Anyway, prison nursing is not for me. In any setting you have patients with psych issues, but I personally don't want to work in one where the majority have it. What age group did you work with? Maybe the prison will work for you.

Comment:
Thanks aNaders,...hmmmm prison nursing doesn't sound good to begin with and then you throw in the psych. I can see why it would be mentally exhausting from the manipulation games. You do have to be able to "trust" when a person says "I'm not feeling well", "my stomach really hurts". Appendicitis? or fake out? Perhaps I should pass up the prison. It's a detention center. There are alot of STD's, infectious chronic diseases- things you might anticipate for that community. I have tried to find opinions of prison nurses online and most say you must be very confident. I have not seen many dislikes of prison nursing. It appears you cannot be too personable and at the same time show respect to try and gain some trust. I worked in school health with middle schoolers. Middle schoolers certainly do try and manipulate to get out of class but adult prisoners are a whole new ballgame. I will go to the interview to see what they say. I suppose I was hoping to learn in this environment simply because there would be alot of different and unusual cases. Perhaps I should look toward a general populace urgent care. I was told there are wounds as well. I am interested in wound care. It's hard to know whether to go ahead and pursue something you might not like or wait for something better to come along when the "something better" might be a long time while income is needed.

Comment:
Yes, I understand the need for income. I don't mean to dissuade you in any way. I was just relating to you that prison nursing is probably not for me, but I have never actually been a prison nurse, just worked with a similar population, and have come to realize I prefer lower percentages of manipulative patients. At some point in my career I would like to work in the ER, and I'm sure I'll have my share of psych/manipulative patients there.

Comment:
Hey why don't you try all the nursing agencies near you? Then you can usually choose your shifts/days etc you want to work. They can probably put you in different areas as well to see how you go, and you can find the best niche for you. I'm older (44 now) and I've never had a problem with age discrimination with n/agencies (I am in Oz though), but I suppose they won't be that different, considering you already have experience.Let us know how u get on

Comment:
I worked as a prison nurse for 5 years and although you will see alot of new grads, they are risking their lisence for sure. You need to know your stuff because it is a very autonomous job and most not all, are nurses that can't get work anywhere else because they tend to be lookin for LOVE in all the wrong places. Be prepared for the staff as well they can be very rude. Basically you are responsible for anything that happens to 1000 inmates plus 40-100 staff medically so be prepared.

Comment:
Hey CanCan,Interesting info you gave me. It's a jail actually(Im learning differences between jail and prison) and I think about 700 inmates altogether. I worked as a school nurse and that had autonomy as well but I realize the jail will be tougher. I'm going to go through with the interview and see how it goes...see what sort of vibes I get. I worked one year as a floor nurse a while ago. I would prefer to have more experience. I feel comfortable with first aid having worked as a school nurse..though I did not see alot of knife wounds Im afraid....I would love to hear about more of your experiences...challenging moments if you ever have the timeThanks!

Comment:
Wow Carol- It looks like you have had alot of experience! I did not have alot of confidence in my 20s and my 30s were for raising babies. Now I have alot more confidence and hungry for some challenges. I am willing to learn..just need someone willing to train me until I get back into the swing of things. The agencies sound like a good idea. I did have one agent call asking if I would be interested in hospice nurse. I will do most anything now to get back into it. We left messages back and forth but I will have to wait until Tues(after the holiday) to get more info. Thanks very much for your interest!!ChristyPs I have one year experience in hospital( peds floor )and Dr offices. A dabble in dermatology, occupational health and school nursing.
Author: jone  3-06-2015, 17:35   Views: 612   
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