Experience Required for Cases as OR Instrument/Circulating Nurse
Hello Mercy Ship Volunteers,
I am aiming to volunteer as an OR nurse in the instrument/circulating nurse position next year in 2021 (once COVID-19 is over!) and am concerned about the experience I have and whether it is 'good enough' for what sort of procedures are done on the ship since I work in a smaller regional OR. Having familiarised myself with the listing for OR nurses and the list of procedures done on the ship which I found in the FAQ section, I would still love some input from other OR nurses who have served on the ship, the experience they have had and perhaps from some OR managers about what they are looking for in experience. This would be amazing!
For context, I have worked for 1 year and 8 months in the OR as an instrument/circulating nurse but also in PACU (recovery), anesthetics, admissions and pre-admission clinic, as we rotate through all roles in the facility where I am. With that said, my passion is the instrument/circulating role and my heart is to serve in this role on the Mercy Ships. The surgeries we do are obstetric (mainly cesarean sections), gynaecological (mainly Hysteroscopy D&Cs, Hysterectomies), ENT (tonsillectomies, adenoidectomies, Endoscopic sinus surgery, septoplasties), general (hernia repairs, lesion & lipoma removals, skin grafts [split skin and full thickness skin grafts], appendectomies, laparoscopic cholecystectomy removal, abscess incision & drainage, mastectomies, wide breast lesion excisions, sentinel lymph node biopsies), orthopaedics, (carpal tunnel decompressions, arthroscopies, finger and toe amputation, smaller fusions and ligament reconstructions). Mostly smaller procedures yet in mostly the right specialities (the only ones lacking are plastics and paediatrics).
I am in the process of seeking out whether I need to move away from my family and current job to a bigger facility to gain more experience in the OR to be able to volunteer on the Mercy Ships, which is a big decision. Although very keen to serve and make a difference in these precious lives I also don't want to weigh the team down with my lack of experience or knowledge of procedures. Any advice, input or insight you can offer me is much appreciated. Thank you in advance!