ITU nurses are always in a state of perpetual motion. The circumstances in the ITU can change rapidly, and it is common for patients and their families to be scared and vulnerable.
Being an ITU nurse means that you are not only a caregiver, but also a researcher, clinician, and a friend. Remember, not everyone can play such diverse roles.
Not everyone can face the good with the bad and keep coming back for more. Often, the most trying careers are the most rewarding ones.
ITU nursing duties range from comforting patients to delivering bad news.
What Do You Need To Be An ITU Nurse?
A capable ITU nurse is one who is organized and has strong interpersonal skills. You must also know how to follow protocols, display genuine kindness and care, operate well under pressure, have extraordinarily high stamina, and can think critically in emergencies.
Agency nurse ITU jobs also demand some clinical skills like patient monitoring, medical management, treatment administration, provision for ventilation support, and frequently updating patient status.
The Challenges of Being an ITU Nurse
Emotional Response to Loss
ITU nurses often treat critically ill patients who are suffering from life-threatening situations. As such, you will be dealing with only smaller caseloads. Typically, you will be assisting one or two patients at any given time.
While this arrangement may be beneficial, it also poses challenges. You may develop personal connections while working with patients and their families.
You will be a shoulder for them to cry on, a pillar of support who empathize their situation and also take the brunt of their fear and frustration. Hence, you must be caring and guarded simultaneously. After all, it is not
very easy to strike a balance between professionalism and compassion.
Potential Conflicts with Physicians
Good and bad days are common for both nurses and doctors. ITU is a place where stakes are high, and the tensions rise according to the situation. In this atmosphere, you may face a conflict with the physician.
But remember that nothing must deviate you from your line of duty. Hence, you must be resilient and navigate the tense situation with care.
You Are Always Needed
Most ITU floors have no coffee breaks. Your patients require round-the-clock care.
Hence, you may only rest after your shift is completed.
Rewards of Being an ITU Nurse
Impressive Levels of Responsibility
There is no time to waste in an ITU. Physicians may not always be present, and you may have to make split-second decisions that influence the condition of your patient.
This degree of autonomy is found only when you work in an ITU.
The need for agency nurse ITU jobs is always on the rise. In the next decade, there is expected to be over 16 percent increase in the demand for all registered nurses, especially so for ITU nurse.
This greatly surpasses the anticipated growth rates of other
A Never-Ending Learning Experience
Medicine is a highly fluid profession where medical advancements occur almost every day. Each of these advancements gives you a fresh opportunity to learn.
Also, no two ITU patients are alike. Every person’s body reacts differently to a traumatic condition. All these situations make learning a compulsory part of an ITU nurse’s career.
Having an emotional patient connection can be viewed either as an advantage or drawback. However, most ITU nurses find this to be an advantage. By spending a good amount of time with patients, your observation can identify things that are foreseen by
This means you will be in a better position to save lives. Also, strong patient connections will result in positive outcomes that are infinitely more meaningful.
Future of ITU Nursing
ITU nursing has been staying abreast with the advancements in technology. As such, today, ITU nurses are not only limited to physical presence in ITUs.
The virtual ICU is on the boom today with leverages technology to accelerate and deliver the best critical care treatment. It uses an innovative onsite and remote model to do so.
Telemedicine allows for an intensive and centralized team to asses, monitor, intervene, and support onsite caregivers. This virtual ITU team consist of experienced ITU nurses and support staff who are located at a remote site.
The critical care management is standardized, and an organizational infrastructure promotes efficient tracking of results.
The virtual ITU uses cutting-edge information technology to identify best-practice solutions to facilitate a smooth workflow and enhanced bedside communication.
While virtual ITU cannot replace onsite caregivers, it is a helpful tool for prompt intervention and ongoing proactive care.
As a new ITU nurse, you may feel anxious and intimidated.
But remember that you have help from other nurses on the floor. You will be surrounded by compassionate men and women who are united by a common goal – to comfort and care for those who need it the most.