Pros: wonderful staff, good teamwork, always a new opprotunity to learn something new
Cons: little to no breaks when it gets busy, having to transfer numerous patients out of the facility for continuance of care, lack of specialty care like trauma
A typical day at work consists of coming in and getting a quick report from the previous technician that was on. Generally, we discuss if dietary supplies have been ordered, special materials for the department have been ordered, and also discuss if there have been any transfers out of the hospital (which happens quite often in Bradford because we are so small). We also like to discuss the day in general just to get a feel for how the rest of the day will go while I am there. Once they leave, I sit down at my desk, sign into our charting system and take a moment to observe the screen to get a feel – more... for what type of patients are currently there. From that point on, I stand for the remaining time and am in an out of patient rooms helping out the nurses or getting materials stocked. It is generally pretty busy in our ER so the time goes by pretty fast.
I have learned so much from the staff in Bradford. I have been there for 5 years now. When I first started, I didn't know much about healthcare but knew that I really wanted to be a part of this field. What I love about the ER is that you never know what you are going to get, and each patient encounter is a learning experience. No two patients are the same. For example, one patient may come in with chest pain and after all of the testing, you find out they were having a panic attack vs a patient that comes in with a strange wrist pain and within 2 minutes you determine that they are having a STEMI. Even being a technician, I have picked up rapid assessment skills along with the need for early intervention. While in nursing school, I would learn something in class and be able to turn around and see it in action while I was working. I cannot even begin to mention all of the things that I have learned there because it is too much to put in here.
I have the most wonderful coworkers and managers. They are always willing to jump in and help clean beds and stock rooms with me or to pull me into a room with a more indepth case to make sure I get that experience. They answered all of my questions when I had them on a patient or even when I had a question on a care plan I was writing for class. They covered for me when I was running late from class or rotations, and they just treat me as one of their equals, which is a wonderful feeling. My managers were willing to work around my hectic schedule from school and still managed to give me some time off for a breather when I needed it.
The hardest part of the job is when tons of things are going on at once, and I am the only help for all of the nurses. It gets more difficult when patients need to be transferred out of the hospital (sometimes 3 at once) and the phones are ringing off the hook, and a patient needs to get up to go to the bathroom or needs their linens changed. Its just one of those times where you wish you had 8 arms and 8 legs to help out as much as you can. But we have a pretty cohesive team and they typically jump in to help when I cannot get away from the transfers.
The most enjoyable part of the job is working with my coworkers. Like I said, they are the most amazing group of people, and we act more like a family. When a code comes in or a STEMI needs to be sent to the cath lab immediately, we come together and work incredibly well as a team. When things end on a positive note, nothing beats the smiles and pure joy that comes from the families and patients themselves when you save their lives. That is a feeling that I cannot really describe, but it is what drives me to come to work each day and do what I do, even if I am a Registered Nurse working as an ER technician.
If anyone is interested in getting their feet wet and getting some experience in the healthcare field, I would recommend BRMC over and over again...it has been the most amazing experience and has helped turn me into the RN that I am today! – less