Are you hoping to pursue a career in nursing? If yes, you’ve probably looked into different specialties you can work in as a nurse. Each specialty needs its own skills and certifications, especially when it comes to those that work in emergency nursing. The environment around which emergency nurses work is often stressful and fast-paced, hence requiring a skill set that is way above the standard nursing skill.
You’ll be required to stay calm and collected in stressful situations so you’ll have to see whether you’re someone who can handle the pressure or not. Keep reading to learn additional skill sets to know whether you’ll be a good fit as an emergency nurse.
What Exactly Do Emergency Nurses Do?
ER nurses specialize in treating patients who are dealing with complex issues, including trauma, severe injuries, and medical conditions that require urgent treatment. Since they work in a critical environment, ER nurses must be able to quickly figure out how to best stabilize the patients and minimize their pain.
As an ER nurse, you’ll be required to evaluate and treat patients at the same time, while working with specialists.
The whole scenario isn’t very exciting, especially not how they show it on TV. You’ll often have to prepare medical rooms, update electronic health records, and so on. You can also take on the role of an educator and participate in public programs that raise awareness about critical issues like alcohol consumption, gun safety, child passenger safety, domestic violence, Helmet safety, among other things.
Some things that ER nurses do include:
- Administering medicine
- Monitoring vitals
- Transfusing blood
- Performing diagnostic tests
- Performing minor operations
- Starting IV lines
- Advising patients and their families
Where Do ER Nurses Work?
For the most part, ER nurses work in the emergency departments of health centres but there are other environments that they can work in as well, for example, you may work as flight nurses, in urgent care health departments, triage centres, poison control centres, in cruise ships, federal prisons and also the film industry.
If you prefer something calmer, you can always choose to be an ER nurse in schools or walk-in clinics. As a nurse who is specializing in emergency situations, you can work anywhere because of your unique set of abilities.
What Are the Qualities of ER Nurses?
There are no particular qualities that you’re required to possess as an emergency nurse but having certain characteristics does make you better suited for this job.
An ability to remain calm in a crisis and high-pressure, stressful situations is definitely a must. This also means exuding confidence even when you’re unsure of a particular situation or condition. Being a caring and the confident nurse helps patients become calmer and more comfortable.
It’s also a plus if you can stay flexible in tricky times — being able to deal with complex, unpredictable situations is highly important. You should also have a thirst for knowledge and be ready to learn for a lifetime (because being in the ER department teaches you a lot).
And of course, you’ll need to possess empathy. This is probably the most important characteristic that we need in ER nurses. Patients need someone who understands, someone who smiles and is compassionate, especially in the situation and condition they are in.
How to Become an Emergency Room Nurse?
Like all nursing program requirements, you’ll have to first become a registered nurse (RN) by either getting an associate degree or a bachelor’s in nursing. Both these routes lead to a career as an RN, but you’ll have to decide which of these suits you better. Once you have the nursing degree, you’ll need to become licensed to work as a nurse. You do this by passing the NCLEX-RN exam that involves studying biology, chemistry, nutrition, anatomy, emergency care, nursing fundamentals, healthcare ethics, and more.
After becoming a licensed nurse, you can begin working toward becoming an emergency nurse. You’ll need to gain experience in emergency situations so try working with paramedics or as a floating nurse in your hospital’s ER.
Once you earn two years of emergency experience, you can earn a certification to give you an edge over other candidates (even though it’s not a requirement).
Become a nurse in Canada with the help of a good nursing review center like Modern Tech Centre. You’ll find them to be the best-exam review center offering comprehensive study plans for REX-PN and RPN exams including the best REx-PN review course. Schedule a study strategy appointment with Modern Tech Nursing today.