New BSA Nurse Shares Path to Nursing

October 14, 2016

In July, Megan Hubbard, RN embarked on a new career when she arrived at BSA’s orientation. “It fits my personality,” she shares of choosing to pursue a career in critical care nursing. At the conclusion of her 13-week orientation with a preceptor (an experienced nurse in her department) at her side, she was ready for her first 12-hour shift on nights in the coronary care unit of the intensive care unit (ICU). “I’m completely new. Working at BSA is my first-ever work experience in a hospital, but I do feel like I’m ready. I’m ready to develop my own routine caring for patients.”

Megan invested careful consideration into taking on this new role after leaving a career in real estate. “I remember a family member saying, ‘You’d be a great nurse,’ at the time I was working in real estate,” she says. “I researched it and saw the endless possibilities in nursing. It was so attractive to me – something you could do throughout your life.”

Taking prerequisite classes at night while continuing to work in real estate, Megan began looking into nursing schools. Her husband had accepted a job in Clovis, NM. She spoke to the director of nursing at Clovis Community College and learned the program had an opening for her. “Critical care nursing was always attractive to me,” she adds of knowing her focus from the start. “I pay close attention to detail. Critical patients require your attention and care. That coupled with customer service - I knew that I could communicate with the family and take care of the patient.”

Nearing graduation from nursing school, Megan again carefully considered her next move and a training program that would help develop her skills. “The BSA Critical Care Nurse Residency program was graduate-friendly,” she says of her research. She also spoke with fellow classmates, one of whom began working at BSA. “She told me how welcoming everyone is.” It was important to Megan that she felt supported as a new nurse graduate – “trained and not put down in the process.”

“As soon as I found out about the program at BSA, I wanted in,” Megan explains. “I knew it was what I wanted.”

BSA Director of Critical Care Services, Allen Overturf MSN-L, RN, NE-BC, interviewed Megan as well as other nurses in the unit. “I had interviews with peer nurses,” Megan recalls. “They were great to talk to and answered my questions. They said they worked well as a team and that is a good feeling as a new nurse. Allen gave me the option of working in the intensive care unit’s medical surgical unit or the coronary care unit.”

To prepare for her night shift, it was also important for Megan to work the day shift. She spent 10 weeks with a preceptor on days. “The day shift is different,” she says. “I could see the procedures patients have. Doctors are rounding and patients have diagnostic imaging. The turning point in patients’ care is unraveling during the day.”

At night, Megan learned the importance of budgeting her time to not only care for the patient, but also carefully review patient charts to ensure all labs and orders were filled and up to date. What has surprised her most about the coronary care unit is how quickly patients are ready to go home. “I thought I would have patients for an extended period of time, maybe two weeks,” she says. “In this unit, patients have had heart attacks or a procedure and we’re monitoring them as they stabilize. It’s a faster environment than I had anticipated. There are admits and discharges every day.”

With regards to learning protocols, procedures and computer systems in a new work environment, along with a new career, Megan says she purposefully invited everything new. “I have been welcoming of everything coming my way and told myself that I had to give it time,” she explains. “Every day there is something brand new. It is exciting!”

To learn more about current nursing opportunities at BSA, please click here.