I have been an RN for a little over 2 years. I graduated nursing school at a really bad time when there were hiring freezes everywhere and the few new grad programs that were accepting applications had a very limited number of spots, so basically, you had to know someone to get in. I started working for a staffing agency that initially sent me to area ADHC's because they didn't require acute experience. It was per diem, and not really what I wanted to be doing but I had to work somewhere. Through that agency I ended up ge3tting into case managent (by accident, really) and was hired on by an IPA as an RN case manager, where I've been for over a year. This is not what I want to be doing and certainly not what I envisioned my nursing career would be. I want to do clinical work, but there seems to be no way to make the transition without having acute care experience. Nearly every job posting requires at least a year of acute experience, often specialized, which I don't have and I'm not a new grad anymore, to get into a new grad program. I am so frustrated and feel completely stuck in a position I don't really want to be in. Is there no way to move into a clinical position for me? I will have my BSN in June and plan to get my public health nursing certification that I'm hoping will open a few doors for me, but I'm getting so discouraged because no employer will even give me the time of day without recent acute experience. In a way I understand the experience requirement or entering as a new grad hire where you are trained on the job. I'm not sure I would feel safe jumping right in after so long away from the clinical side, but understanding doesn't make it any less frustrating.
Can anyone offer any advice? I've looked into refresher courses and there are very few...and I live right by los angeles! The few I've found don't offer a clinical component- the part I need the most. I have the knowledge, I just need to refresh my clinical skills. I'm willing to work as hard as I need to to do this but there just doesn't seem to be a way. someone please help.