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Sick all the time first year at the hospital


Specializes in CCRN, Geriatrics.

Hello All,?

I recently landed my first job at hospital having worked in home care, rehabs and longterm care facilities. In December I had a respiratory infection causing my lymph nodes to swell.?In January I test positive for covid after a small unit outbreak. My hospital does not allow us to wear N95 unless we have a confirmed positive covid patient. I was home for about 3 weeks.?

In feb I started night shift about two days per week 12 hour shift. This past week my unit had another covid outbreak and 5 of the patients I had for 2 weeks straight tested positive. We discovered it after 4 of our patient sitters tested positive. Also my hospital approved select patients to have visitors and 3 of the patients with visitors are positive.?Unfortunately the visitors were not tested at all they were just screened with a questionnaire.?This week I?worked 3 days straight and now today im having severe abd pain and diar***. I am not asking for medical advice.?

I think that I am getting sick due to new exposure to different germs/bacteria.?

Has any experienced this phenomenon after starting a new job in the hospital? Also I want to add it is my first night shift job.?

Davey Do

Specializes in around 25 years psych, 10 years medical. Has 42 years experience.

Sorry to hear about your woes, Lovethenurse2b!

Having worked the MN shift for 18 out of my 36 years in nursing, I can say first hand that the shift is an added stressor on the body, hence, the immune system.

When I was in my 30's, It seemed like I was always catching or getting over something.

As I've?grown?older, it seems my body has adapted and I rarely get sick.

My medical nurse wife Belinda and I were discussing our history of illnesses just the other day. We've been together for nearly 15 years and she could recall me being sick maybe three times with flu and/or cold symptoms.

Hopefully your body will eventually adapt, Lovethenurse2b.?

Take good care of yourself, both when ill and when not!


It happened when I first started working in the ED. Sick all the time for the first year. After that rarely sick but when it happened yowzers was I sick. ?

Lovethenurse2b25, ASN, BSN, RN

Specializes in CCRN, Geriatrics.

53 minutes ago, Wuzzie said:

It happened when I first started working in the ED. Sick all the time for the first year. After that rarely sick but when it happened yowzers was I sick. ?

Did you cut down hours at all to avoid getting sick? Right now I am part time I'm considering switching to days or going per diem night until I can adjust. I did not imagine that this would happen. But my hospital is very old so I can only imagine what kind of bacteria or germs are lurking around. My coworkers must be immune to it because many of them don’t wear mask at night. Meanwhile I’m wearing double mask, a shield and washing my hands nonstop. Not to mention bagging my uniform?and disinfecting everything when I get home.?

Nope, I finally got exposed to just about everything and developed a robust immunity as a result. It does get better.?

PS: Other than required PPE I don’t do anything special. I don’t even wash my scrubs separately.?

marienm, RN, CCRN

Specializes in Burn, ICU. Has 8 years experience.

I started as a night shift nurse having left a career working a support staff at a local university. I get less sick, less frequently in the hospital than I ever did working with mostly-healthy college students!? I attribute it to gelling my hands all the time (this was?before universal masking became a thing in 2020).

Not discounting your experience, of course, I just think it's funny how infrequently I get sick. And since we started universal masking a year ago, I don't think I've had any respiratory illnesses at all. (Intermittent GI things which seem to be chronic/anxiety-related, and chronic headaches, but no sniffles or sore throats!).? Sorry you've had a rough year.

Emergent, RN

Specializes in ER. Has 28 years experience.

Your number one defense against illness is a healthy immune system. That means, caring for your body by sleeping plentifully, eating healthy food, and and getting physical exercise.

Too many people are doing none of the above. It is your number one defense.