Immunizations, titers and physicals… oh my!!

 

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This is my Lilly, there are many like it… but this one is mine.

The most daunting task of making sure I am ready for nursing school so far has been all the doctor visits!

There are very specific and timely tasks that need to be completed along with careful documentation to make sure I am able to uphold my clinical responsibilities.

During the information meeting on April 29, we were given in-depth information on the documentation needed to continue into the nursing program. This post is just some helpful tips.

My school requires positive titers for Mumps, Rubella, Rubeola, and Varicella; immunization records for Influenza, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis, and Hepatitis B; a Serology test, physical, and 2-Step Mantoux Test (TB).

A titer is a blood test that measures the amount of antibodies in the blood, testing immunity. 

We are also required to show CPR/AED for Health Care Providers certification and State Tested Nurses Assistant (STNA) certification, have a drug test done, be fingerprinted and have a background check. The school I attend sets up the drug test, fingerprinting and background check. There is no charge at time of service, it is added to the fees portion on our Autumn bill. 

Looking at the list, it doesn’t seem like much but if you are going into nursing school with no medical background, it’s a lot. My advice for anyone entering nursing school is to allow yourself adequate time to meet all the requirements your school has. That means, when you first find out what you need to get done pick up the phone and start scheduling and getting records to turn in. I received the information on April 29th and had my appointment with my doctor on May 15th. I am still working on my information because the wrong test was requested for HBV and I also had to redo the 2nd step of my 2 step Mantoux because I did it two days early.

Work with your doctor. Make sure you triple check all information and that everything is documented according to your school’s requirements. Some of these can take a few weeks to carry out, the last thing you want to do it get it done last-minute only to find out you have to redo something.

An excellent example of this is that the medical assistant at my doctor’s office put the result of my TB test as negative. My school specifically wants the reaction written as the measurement of induration in millimeters. They will not accept negative as a result. I had to speak up and let her know. The medical assistant was beyond understanding and happy to change it.

If you are not going through your family physician or do not have one, contact your state’s health department. They may have some options for you. Or you can speak with the Dean of your nursing program. They may work with labs to help provide low-cost solutions to students.

Put all records in your Nursing Binder or with your Nursing documents. MAKE COPIES!!! I made 5 copies of each sheet I had to have filled out and all immunization and titer records. Keep your originals, if you are able to. (I will be doing a follow-up post to this, showing my Nursing Binder and the information I keep in it).

Keep a detailed planner including all dates. I have a Lilly Pulitzer planner that holds my life. You can use this as a reminder of when the immunizations and titers were done. You can also use it to keep a list of things that need to be done and check off as you go.

Ask questions. If you are unsure about anything, reach out to faculty. They are there to help you and your success is important to them. No question is dumb. I’m sure they have heard it all.

Does your program have similar requirements? What did you find the most confusing or difficult the semester/quarter before your program?

 

**I have been writing a lot and have several posts ready to go. Title teasers:

1. Nursing Binder DIY

2. Uniform Day – Officially Scrubed!!!

3. State Tested Nursing Aide

4. Let’s Get Some Shoes… But Not the Ugly Ones

Which title are you most excited for??

 

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