maybe getting into the medical field ... suggestions?

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Ted Lee, May 4, 2004.

  1. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    hi all -

    i'm seriously considering leaving the computer/it world.

    1. i just barely escaped another round of layoffs - the third or fourth so far.
    2. i just found out the new primary app my company is promoting will be supported by techs in india.
    3. the entire helpdesk here is being outsourced to canada and india

    it just goes on and on ...

    anyway, i'm thinking about getting into the medical business, but i'm not sure what area. being a nurse sounds appealing, but i wonder about slighly more technically oriented jobs (mri labs, etc..). what other types of entry level medial jobs are there?

    anyway, i'm not even sure what the first step would be in something like this. how does one learn these skills? technical colleges? acredited courses of some sort? other? i certainly feel i'm intelligent enough to handle whatever is tossed at me ... well brain surgery may be out of the question, but you get my drift.

    anyway, if anyone has any info, pass it on. or if you're already in the medical field, i'd like to hear your opinions and thoughts.

    thx!
     
  2. Chris

    Chris Lead Actor

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    Nursing is a boom field like no other. I mean like no other.

    Right now, there are too few people going to college in nursing.. to few by almost 1/2. We have such a difficulty getting nurses because they aren't graduating.. so nurses can "free market" themselves and get both great pay and benefits.

    If you're willing to work in a retirement community, it gets even better.

    Many retirement communities are completely desperate. We paid up to $3,000-$5,000 in "incentives" for people to come on board as a nurse, with some payable right up front, and the remainder if they stayed 6 months.

    If you are at all thinking about nursing, and you think you could stomach it, it is one of the big 3 fields that I tell everyone you should consider (the others being plumbing and electrician.. a local plumbing group can't manage to hire plumbers at a starting pay of $63,000!)
     
  3. Parker Clack

    Parker Clack Schizophrenic Man
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    Ted:

    Nursing is a field that is both very rewarding and at the same time very frustrating. For men getting into the field it is almost a cake walk with getting into school in the first place and then getting a job afterwards.

    Nursing education is multi-level. You can get your LPN in one year. To get your RN you need to attend at least a two year college associates degree program. From there you can get your BS, MS and PhD. Then there are speciality areas in nursing like nurse practitioners and physician assistants which are post graduate studies with a master's degree. There is also the field of nursing anesthesia which is a post graduate course too.

    To start I would recommend getting your ADN. That will get you into the field and you can then decide if this is indeed what you want to do for a career. In addition you haven't spent a small fortune on your education and then you decide this isn't what you want to do.

    The major problem with anything in the medical field right now is reimbursement to the hospitals and doctors from medicare and insurance companies. This is causing a lot of turmoil in the industry more so than I have seen in my 25 years as a nurse. Nurses are having to take on more and more responsibilities with less resources to do it with.

    Nursing can pay you a very good salary and job security is a big plus but for some even that isn't enough to keep them in this field. I would suggest that you call around to your local Universities and ask them if they have a School of Nursing program. Or better yet call your local hospitals and tell them that you are interested in going to nursing school. Some of them will even pay your way thru school if you committ to working for them for a few years after you get out. I would also talk with some of the nurses that work in your area and ask them if they care for what they do or not. It will give you a good feel of the type of work they are being required to do every day.

    Parker
     
  4. Angelo.M

    Angelo.M Producer

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    Ted:

    I am a physician; my wife is a nurse.

    In the decade+ that's she's been an RN, we have never seen such high demand for her skills/training as we do at the moment. As the Boomers age into retirement and beyond, the demand will only expand.

    The medical system that we happen to work for is going to significant lengths to recruit RN's, including generous signing bonuses, good pay and solid benefits; this is happening in other parts of the country as well. While I certainly appreciate what Parker is getting at in his post re the changing climate of medical care, I still think that nursing is a great career option because there's tremendous flexibility in your job choice after you complete your schooling/training. As Parker stated, there is good job security, good pay, and there is the opportunity for advancement, including administrative opportunities.

    As far as medicine, I can't really be objective because I love my work so much. There continues to be tremendous opportunity, as in nursing, and there are far more training opportunities in medicine than there are US medical school grads to fill. You put up with some things, but the level of autonomy for most of us is so great that we wouldn't trade the career for anything else. Perhaps other docs on HTF will chime in.

    Beyond nursing and medicine itself, there are a host of other careers one can consider in the medical field, from laboratory work to medical technology to physician assistance, etc and so on. Many of these require a year or more of schooling beyond college or high school, with subsquent certification. There are specific technical schools and programs, many hospital based, at which you can obtain training.

    Contact your local academic medical center for more info. I'm sure there's at least one teaching hospital in Sacramento, and they would be a good resource to begin with.

    Good luck.
     
  5. DarrenHo

    DarrenHo Stunt Coordinator

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    there are accellerated nursing programs where you can sit for state boards and be an rn with 18mo of school. i'm not sure that this is a good thing though. pharmacy is also a very in demand field. $10,000 sign on bonuses. employers paying for 2 yrs of school. it does take 3-5yrs however. new grads are making over $100k/yr.
     
  6. Dome Vongvises

    Dome Vongvises Lead Actor

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    Suggestions?

    It's rewarding.....BUT MAN DOES SCHOOLING SUCK!

    [​IMG]
     
  7. Chris

    Chris Lead Actor

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    I will say this, also. If you work your way up in nursing.. there is a definitive career. I made a call just to check what I thought.. there are about 450 open "vacancies" for nurses here in my Metro alone.

    What's causing it?

    * More people are living longer, which means more elderly to care for, which means the need for more nurses.
    * Advanced healthcare and new fields including outpatient surgery, etc. which normally keep at least a CNA or two onstaff. This also includes specialists, etc.

    And most importantly is this fact:

    Nationwide enrollment in nursing programs is DOWN. It is DOWN big for this terrible reason: many women are deciding not to go into nursing as some view it as stereotypical.. and many are going into, or trying medical practice (Doctors) some succeed, some don't, but in the whole, it greatly diminishes nursing, which many men don't due for the same reasons.. people can't get over the sex type association with the role.. and as a result, fewer graduates with a nursing degree.. and more demand.
     
  8. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    thank you very much for the insight. i'm glad to hear some first-hand opinions. it's pretty much as i've heard and seen on news reports. healthcare needs more people.

    i think i could enjoy being in the healthcare field. i enjoy working with and assisting people with their problems or issues. i get a sense of satisfaction in knowing that i helped them in some way. the two other benefits that appeal to me is that healthcare is not susceptible to the offshoring our nation is seeing. finally, the salary and benefits seem compensatory to the work.

    do you folks have an opinion as to which learning method is preferable? specialized school, university track, crash-courses, etc?

    also, does one education have a higher public opinion or ranking (real or perceived) with hospitals or the industry in general?

    thx again guys.
     
  9. Jimi C

    Jimi C Screenwriter

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    This one is kind of on the edge but, i work at walgreens and i know they, as well as all the other major pharmacys are killing for pharmacists. You could work in retail, a hospital or doing lab work. Ive seen some of there pay checks. They make more in a week than i do in 2 months, both working 40 hours a week.

    In fact they are offering $1,000 to employees for recomending pharmacists, and $2,000 in the Pheonix and Baltamore areas.
     
  10. Parker Clack

    Parker Clack Schizophrenic Man
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    Ted:

    Definitely go for an Associates Degree to start off with in Nursing. A BSN, MSN and RN PhD is nice but for the most part don't pay that much more than an ADN unless you get into some kind of administrative position. If all you are really wanting to do is help take care of people in a hospital setting an ADN is all you need.

    I would also recommend that you take your pre-reqs before you take any kind of nursing classes. Taking Anatomy and Physiology and Microbiology along with you nursing classes can be a real bear especially when it comes to writing up case studies, etc. In other word when you are taking the nursing classes take them by themselves each semester as you are going to be busy enough with just those.

    Chris has a good point about the "role" of men as nurses but I think it is even less of an issue now than what it was even 10 years ago. Men in the field of nursing are getting more and more respect from their colleges and their patients. I also believe that the influx of more men into the nursing field has actually helped increase pay and better working conditions.

    Nursing is one of the few fields in medicine that you can invest in a relatively short period of time to get a job that pays well, has great health care benefits and is always going to be in demand no matter were you go. The field is wide open. What you chose to do with the degree and license after you achieve it is limitless.

    Parker
     
  11. Julian Reville

    Julian Reville Screenwriter

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    Agreed, the demand for RNs will be high for a long time.

    But also consider these things: dealing with patients [​IMG] ,
    body odor, infections, lice, urine and feces, vomit (LOTS of vomit), drug and/or alcohol abusers, threats and acts of violence, enemas, more vomit............
     
  12. PhillJones

    PhillJones Second Unit

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    You say you're looking for alternatives to nursing in healthcare. You could look into being a laboratory technician, dosimatrist, system admin for a bio-physics lab or somthing like that. The entry requirements are normally an undergrad degree in the relevant field but if your degree is in computer science or IT, an imaging lab or bio-physics or similar might be interested.

    Try looking at your local unversity and hospital websites for jobs that they have.
     
  13. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    thanks again guys. i'm going to be checking with cal-state sac in the very near future. i'm also seeing what kind of technical schools are in my area. finally, i'll take a look at some hospitals, but i'm not even sure where to start there.
     
  14. Joseph S

    Joseph S Cinematographer

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    What about something like a surgical tech? I have no idea on their pay, but they sure do get a lot of break time and should have fairly good job security. Obnoxious surgeons are probably the drawback, but very little patient interaction. "Where's the ______, it's on my _____'n _____ slip?" [​IMG]
     
  15. andrew markworthy

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    I'm not trying to thread fart, but a note of caution might be wise.

    I realise that women rejecting stereotypical careers is a big reason, but there are others. FWIW, these days in the UK nursing often has a negative image. I sincerely hope that it's different in the USA. Sad, because I think nursing is one of the noblest callings.
     
  16. Angelo.M

    Angelo.M Producer

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    If you are referring to medical school, then I couldn't disagree more. My wife would also strongly disagree about nursing school.
     
  17. andrew markworthy

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    Angelo, very relieved to hear things are rather better in the USA. I should perhaps have added that several of my older relatives were nurses and they loved it. However, they have admittedly been retired for some years.
     
  18. Angelo.M

    Angelo.M Producer

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    andrew:

    Thanks for your message. My only exposure to nursing in Europe has occurred during professional exchanges, primarily with Italy. Nurses there seemed to be in similar circumstances as here in the US, based on what I observed.
     
  19. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    hey folks, what do you think of this program?

    cal state sac nursing program

    the only drawback i can see is that i'd almost have to start fresh, as all my college credits were towards a telecommunications degree. that means another 4 years or more. ack...
     

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