What Do I Do Now?: Clinical Decision Making by New Graduates

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Newly graduated nurses (NGNs) are thrust into roles that some purport they are inadequately prepared to handle. This study investigated the experience of NGNs as they made clinical judgments in the critical care setting. Three themes emerged: developing confidence in practice, seeking assistance, and decision making. Nursing professional development educators can use the results to coordinate an education plan that extends beyond formal orientation and provides support for NGNs throughout the first year of practice.

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