Secrets of an ICU nurse

ICU nurse

I recently had the opportunity to be a guest blogger for Stephen at Page the PA – he is a rock star on Instagram sharing his experiences as he goes through PA school. He is doing his ICU rotation soon, so I thought I would tell him a few secrets from this veteran ICU nurse! Please connect with him on IG @PagethePA and tell him I sent you!!

When most students, rotate through the ICU, they literally enter another world in health care. Whether they are new residents on service for the month, PA students, medical students or nursing students, the ICU experience is like no other rotation.  Sure, you may have seen a few sick folks, but ICU patients take that to a whole new level. It’s a smorgasbord of problems – all in one human fighting to survive. It’s the land with more devices, tubes and drains than any human should have to endure.  But, there is nothing like caring for a patient with multiple, often competing problems. The challenges are endless and the environment is often fast paced and demanding. But for a visiting student, it is certainly intimidating.

So, here’s a few tips from this 20-year ICU nurse that will hopefully make your experience a smooth one and ultimately make you want to come back for more!

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Performance Scrubs – Review

Performance scrubs

So, a few months ago, I was doing some research on nursing products made in the USA. I know, totally random and I don’t even remember what sparked the thought. I was pleasantly surprised to come upon an homegrown scrub company called Performance Scrubs. I was not only intrigued that they were made in the USA, but the incredible options for personalization and their total uniqueness in the scrubs marketplace.  I reached out to them and they graciously offered to let me give a pair a trial and here’s my review!

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Simulation – Preventing Medical Errors

Simulation, Medical Errors

Simulation – Preventing Medical Errors

As technology evolves, so does the pursuit for new techniques to train health care providers more efficiently and to ultimately prevent medical errors. Simulation has met this goal and in fact, simulation is now becoming the standard for education of health care providers. In high stakes areas such as obstetrics (OB), neurosurgery and even trauma services, the use of simulation has become priceless. Simulating scenarios has been useful in many areas, such as CPR training, plus many more. If you’re wanting to get trained in resuscitation, see Mississauga cpr training that provide their training all around the world.

Last semester, I had the opportunity to be a simulation facilitator for our 2nd year medical/surgical nursing students. In the simulation I was responsible for, the “patient” had a small intracranial hemorrhage that deteriorated. During the simulation, the students are completely responsible for the care of their “patient”. The goal of the simulation is to place the students in complex situations that we normally can not produce in the clinical environment – for example, we can’t just walk about the hospital and ask patients to seizure, just so the student can have the “experience”.

Also, during a high stakes situation, this is not the ideal time for a student or new health care provider to learn. Therefore, by using the simulation environment, we are able to place the student in high stakes situation, however with no risk to any human life. If the students should fail to recognize a deterioration or give a wrong medication, although the “patient” will die, we just reset, learn from the experience and correct the action – however, no harm.

On a different note, as a nursing student, it is not just the pressures of studying and simulations that seem overwhelming. The financial side of being a student can often be difficult to manage. However, it is important to remember that there are a number of different credit cards out there that can help students to make ends meet. For more information about managing your money, click here for a useful guide to some of the most popular credit cards for students on the Nova Credit website.

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Nurses’ Week Giveaway!!

Happy Nurses Week!!


Nurses’ Week Giveaway!

What better way to celebrate than a good old fashion nurses week giveaway!! You know the gift you will get from the hospital will not compare to the gifts at this giveaway, so go enter! You have nothing to loose, but lots to gain! Go enter at The Nerdy Nurse and while you are there check out her awesome blog!! She has the perfect blend of all things nursing and techy! Show some love to a fellow nurse this week! She is one of my favorite nurse bloggers out there! Feel free to share the love – share on Facebook or pin it to Pinterest!

Daily NCLEX Questions

NCLEX Mastery

Here is another fun NCLEX Facebook page – but this one gives you daily questions! They are very random and the answer with rationale is posted usually at the end of the day. The questions are really random, so they do get you thinking. You can also scroll back through their FB page to past questions.
They also have an app that has some good reviews. They offer a lite version with about 80 questions to give you an idea how their app works. (I have downloaded it and will give you some feedback.)  The “full” version is $29.99 – which is a steal as they are raising their price to $39.99 according to their info on iTunes. If you do purchase the app, I would love to hear from you – maybe you could be my guest blogger – or at least give your review!!
Enjoy and remember –  practice makes perfect!!

NCLEX Mastery Link


Practice NCLEX Questions


At the college I am currently teaching clinicals, we use ATI as a tool to assist the students in NCLEX test preparation. Overall, I think it a good product, however, it has to be used.
Well, did you know they have a Facebook page that has a weekly question?? How cool is that! They post a random question every week and then the rationale at the end of the week. Whether you area student or a nurse practicing since the dinosaurs, I think it is a great tool to stay sharp! Check it out and keep that brain exercising!

ATI Weekly Question Facebook page