Ongoing training needed to prepare for this
As I was deployed from my specified unit as a Gyn/Oncology nurse to the ICU was indeed a huge change. I however was eager to go represent and help save as many lives as I can. Learning 80 percent of ICU work within 36 hours was overwhelming, while also facing every covid patient that arrived to the unit with 85 percent chance that the pt will and was intubated was challenging. I think that as a deployed nurse now looking on the sidelines all nurses should be trained basic skills on these critical care units. All nurses should know how to put in IVs and not just IV nurses; how to use arterial lines. Or allow you to work on a specialty floor and another intensive care unit. Maybe created a group of nurses per unit to go learn these skills so they can be ready. It’s nice to be in a speciality but when something like a pandemic happens your anxiety and fear reacting too “I never worked there! I don’t know how to be that kind of nurse” is challenging. All case managers; outpatient nurses should still be required to work maybe a 12hr shift as a floor nurse every two months. Just a suggestion to keep the skill. It’s hard watching the patients die without any family member around. Maybe have a team to teach family how to abide by basic safety rules maybe an online class. That way maybe one family member is allowed to be at their side. This helps mentally. And can probably make a difference for hope and save a life. Family presence to me is vital! Then you the Frontliner! Checking in on you is huge. Not just can you do overtime but sending out a pre-ready short survey to check in how was your day ? Do you think you can work another day mentally? Just knowing that your supported by your fellow management helps .