Last night I was floated up to Tele with two other ICU nurses, which was OK. I'd rather be working than called off due to census. The ICU only had 5 patients that night and Tele had apparently been slammed the night and day before.
What was NOT OK was when we got there the charge had our assignments ready for us and only the ICU nurses were slated with admissions. The usual deal is that when we float we take only four patients (the sickest) and no admits, when Tele nurses float to the ICU they get the easiest patients, no vents, no drips. So when I pointed this out to the charge she told me that was the way things were going. I then had to point out to her that two of her three floaters (myself and another gal) are fresh off orientation and have NEVER been on the floor. Giving us the first two admits would be a really bad idea unless she wanted to pick up the slack and take care of our other patients while we did the admit, since we could barely find their rooms let alone their meds.
Needless to say asserting myself did not make me overly popular with her, but being used to doing everything myself made me very popular with the aides. I did my own blood sugars and took care of changing beds. I think they were in love with me.
I know floor nurses are forever bashing ICU nurses and telling us we can't handle the work of floor nursing. Honestly, aside from the little snit with the charge it was a very pleasant, easy night. No drips to monitor, charting is way lighter and most of patients just wanted to be left alone and sleep, hey cool with me! About the most work I did was save an IV in one patient and drop one in another and neither of them tried to kick or hit me! In fact both of them thanked me!
I will say it was nice to actually have patients who were awake and chatting for a night.