View Full Version : A question for nurses

07-25-2009, 07:28 PM
I'm headed back to work after being out of the nursing profession for close to 5 yrs. I have 24 yrs experience total, with 16 of them being an RN.
Anyway, I needed to stay home with a special needs child but with dh off work...well, here I'am.

I found a good organization to work for and found a job in a hospital tha pays well. However, now I need to do orientation and take a written drug test.

Being out for almost 5 yrs and not having taken a drug test in 16 years, what drugs should I study? The paperwork said to bring a calculator, so I will do that.

But I have no idea on what drugs to study besides Digoxin and what mathmatically? ANY ideas??

I'm bit nervous about this.....:whoosh:

07-25-2009, 10:50 PM
Well I have been retired from the profession for 5 years,so I may not be the right one to answer but I think the drugs you need to know about will depend in part on what area of nursing you will be entering.I think though in general the heart meds,cholesterol,the common antibiotics and pain meds.Good luck on your exam

07-25-2009, 11:50 PM
I'm a nurse-19 years now, but for 5 years I have worked in Home health, not the acute side. But I would study pain meds because adequate pain control is a nationally recognized issue. Coumadin! Coumadin safety was a Joint Commission patient safety goal a few years ago. Now Medicare will not pay for blood clots acquired post knee surgery so everyone takes it at least short term and many long term for other reasons like a-fib and valve replacements. When in the hospital waiting for theraputic range of coumadin to kick in they give shots of lovenox or fragmin. IV heparin is no longer the thing.
Cardiac drugs for sure and BP meds. Stomach drugs like prilosec, reglan, etc. If you think you'd be working or need knowlege of chemo at least the most commonly used chemo drugs and some of the new oral chemo agents. Antidepressents are used frequntly (sometimes too much), sleeping meds, and anti anxiety meds as well.

Would it be too much to say you should know everything??? As home health nurse it seems that way. Often when I am reviewing someones meds I run into something that I have not heard of or the name is different than the one I know so I have to stop and look it up.

Get the Nursing 2009 or 2010 drug hand book. I would not recommend memorizing it but it would help re-familiarize yourself with things.

Good luck!!

ETA: Diabetic meds, there are many new insulins and oral agents out there.

07-26-2009, 12:52 AM
Thanks ladies. I do have a new 2010 drug book and have been going over beta blockers, and cardiac in general. Good idea on the antibiotics and diabetic meds.
Coumadin will be a breeze. I'm on the stuff for a year since I developed a DVT from bcp's. NOT fun, but boy, do I know all about it. I didn't know that Heparin drips are the thing of the past though.
I will be on a med/surg/tele unit. I have worked all over a hospital, but primarly med/surg. Not too keen on the tele stuff and I need to be ACLS certified in 6 months. Anyone have experience with that exam, let me know, please!!

BTW, I had to take a written assesment test the other day. 10 scenarios with a 30 second dvd clip. I had to diagnose the problem by the picture (bad actor being sick, lol) and short description (labs), and then write out an intervention and explain. Each clip gave us 7 minutes and the guy stood there with a stop watch.
Then it was IV situations and we had 10 of those and 3 minutes for each one. No explanations, just pictures to look at.
I think I did well after being out for all these years. I hope I'm able to find out my grade. Fingers crossed and say a prayer or two for me!

07-26-2009, 02:05 AM
Good luck! You nurses totally rock! I realized after my mother's surgeries I could never do what you do and it takes a special person to be a nurse! God bless you!

07-26-2009, 11:08 AM
I don't know if we are special or crazy.:roflhard:
I was very happy to leave it all behind, but it does pay pretty well. What I had my sights set on was a special education advocate. Oh well...maybe down the road.
Thanks for the kudo's.:)