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Become An Emergency Department Registered Nurse

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Working As An Emergency Department Registered Nurse

  • Assisting and Caring for Others
  • Documenting/Recording Information
  • Getting Information
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Deal with People

  • Unpleasant/Angry People

  • Unpleasant/Hazardous Environment

  • Make Decisions

  • $66,449

    Average Salary

What Does An Emergency Department Registered Nurse Do

Registered nurses (RNs) provide and coordinate patient care, educate patients and the public about various health conditions, and provide advice and emotional support to patients and their family members.

Duties

Registered nurses typically do the following:

  • Record patients’ medical histories and symptoms
  • Administer patients’ medicines and treatments
  • Set up plans for patients’ care or contribute to existing plans
  • Observe patients and record the observations
  • Consult and collaborate with doctors and other healthcare professionals
  • Operate and monitor medical equipment
  • Help perform diagnostic tests and analyze the results
  • Teach patients and their families how to manage illnesses or injuries
  • Explain what to do at home after treatment

Most registered nurses work as part of a team with physicians and other healthcare specialists. Some registered nurses oversee licensed practical nurses, nursing assistants, and home health aides.

Registered nurses’ duties and titles often depend on where they work and the patients they work with. For example, an oncology nurse may work with cancer patients or a geriatric nurse may work with elderly patients. Some registered nurses combine one or more areas of practice. For example, a pediatric oncology nurse works with children and teens who have cancer.

Many possibilities for working with specific patient groups exist. The following list includes just a few examples:

Addiction nurses care for patients who need help to overcome addictions to alcohol, drugs, and other substances.

Cardiovascular nurses care for patients with heart disease and people who have had heart surgery.

Critical care nurses work in intensive-care units in hospitals, providing care to patients with serious, complex, and acute illnesses and injuries that need very close monitoring and treatment.

Genetics nurses provide screening, counseling, and treatment for patients with genetic disorders, such as cystic fibrosis.

Neonatology nurses take care of newborn babies.

Nephrology nurses care for patients who have kidney-related health issues stemming from diabetes, high blood pressure, substance abuse, or other causes.

Rehabilitation nurses care for patients with temporary or permanent disabilities.

Registered nurses may work to promote public health, by educating people on warning signs and symptoms of disease or managing chronic health conditions. They may also run health screenings, immunization clinics, blood drives, or other community outreach programs. Other nurses staff the health clinics in schools.

Some nurses do not work directly with patients, but they must still have an active registered nurse license. For example, they may work as nurse educators, healthcare consultants, public policy advisors, researchers, hospital administrators, salespeople for pharmaceutical and medical supply companies, or as medical writers and editors.

Clinical nurse specialists (CNSs) are a type of advanced practice registered nurse (APRN). They provide direct patient care in one of many nursing specialties, such as psychiatric-mental health or pediatrics. CNSs also provide indirect care, by working with other nurses and various other staff to improve the quality of care that patients receive. They often serve in leadership roles and may educate and advise other nursing staff. CNSs also may conduct research and may advocate for certain policies.

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How To Become An Emergency Department Registered Nurse

Registered nurses usually take one of three education paths: a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing (BSN), an associate’s degree in nursing (ADN), or a diploma from an approved nursing program. Registered nurses also must be licensed.

Education

In all nursing education programs, students take courses in anatomy, physiology, microbiology, chemistry, nutrition, psychology, and other social and behavioral sciences, as well as in liberal arts. BSN programs typically take 4 years to complete; ADN and diploma programs usually take 2 to 3 years to complete. All programs include supervised clinical experience.

Bachelor’s degree programs usually include additional education in the physical and social sciences, communication, leadership, and critical thinking. These programs also offer more clinical experience in nonhospital settings. A bachelor’s degree or higher is often necessary for administrative positions, research, consulting, and teaching.

Generally, licensed graduates of any of the three types of education programs (bachelor’s, associate’s, or diploma) qualify for entry-level positions as a staff nurse. However, employers—particularly those in hospitals—may require a bachelor’s degree.

Many registered nurses with an ADN or diploma choose to go back to school to earn a bachelor’s degree through an RN-to-BSN program. There are also master’s degree programs in nursing, combined bachelor’s and master’s programs, and accelerated programs for those who wish to enter the nursing profession and already hold a bachelor’s degree in another field. Some employers offer tuition reimbursement.

Clinical nurse specialists (CNSs) must earn a master’s degree in nursing and typically already have 1 or more years of work experience as an RN or in a related field. CNSs who conduct research typically need a doctoral degree.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

In all states, the District of Columbia, and U.S. territories, registered nurses must have a nursing license. To become licensed, nurses must graduate from an approved nursing program and pass the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN).

Other requirements for licensing vary by state. Each state’s board of nursing can give details. For more information on the NCLEX-RN and a list of state boards of nursing, visit the National Council of State Boards of Nursing.

Nurses may become certified through professional associations in specific areas, such as ambulatory care, gerontology, and pediatrics, among others. Although certification is usually voluntary, it demonstrates adherence to a higher standard, and some employers require it.

CNSs must satisfy additional state licensing requirements, such as earning specialty certifications. Contact state boards of nursing for specific requirements.

Important Qualities

Critical-thinking skills. Registered nurses must be able to assess changes in the health status of patients, including determining when to take corrective action and when to make referrals.

Communication skills. Registered nurses must be able to communicate effectively with patients in order to understand their concerns and assess their health conditions. Nurses need to explain instructions, such as how to take medication, clearly. They must be able to work in teams with other health professionals and communicate the patients’ needs.

Compassion. Registered nurses should be caring and empathetic when caring for patients.

Detail oriented. Registered nurses must be responsible and detail oriented because they must make sure that patients get the correct treatments and medicines at the right time.

Emotional stability. Registered nurses need emotional resilience and the ability to manage their emotions to cope with human suffering, emergencies, and other stresses.

Organizational skills. Nurses often work with multiple patients with various health needs. Organizational skills are critical to ensure that each patient is given appropriate care.

Physical stamina. Nurses should be comfortable performing physical tasks, such as moving patients. They may be on their feet for most of their shift.

Advancement

Most registered nurses begin as staff nurses in hospitals or community health settings. With experience, good performance, and continuous education, they can move to other settings or be promoted to positions with more responsibility.

In management, nurses can advance from assistant clinical nurse manager, charge nurse, or head nurse to more senior-level administrative roles, such as assistant director or director of nursing, vice president of nursing, or chief nursing officer. Increasingly, management-level nursing positions are requiring a graduate degree in nursing or health services administration. Administrative positions require leadership, communication skills, negotiation skills, and good judgment.

Some nurses move into the business side of healthcare. Their nursing expertise and experience on a healthcare team equip them to manage ambulatory, acute, home-based, and chronic care businesses. Employers—including hospitals, insurance companies, pharmaceutical manufacturers, and managed care organizations, among others—need registered nurses for jobs in health planning and development, marketing, consulting, policy development, and quality assurance.

Some RNs choose to become nurse anesthetists, nurse midwives, or nurse practitioners, which, along with clinical nurse specialists, are types of advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs). APRNs may provide primary and specialty care, and in many states they may prescribe medications.

Other nurses work as postsecondary teachers in colleges and universities.

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Do you work as an Emergency Department Registered Nurse?

Emergency Department Registered Nurse Jobs

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Emergency Department Registered Nurse Career Paths

Emergency Department Registered Nurse
Nurse Staff Nurse
Assistant Director Of Nursing
7 Yearsyrs
Nurse Home Health Nurse Staff Nurse
Chief Nursing Officer
13 Yearsyrs
Staff Nurse For Emergency Department Nurse Manager Registered Nurse Case Manager
Clinical Care Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Case Manager Therapist Respiratory Therapist
Director Of Clinical Education
11 Yearsyrs
Registered Nurse Case Manager Nursing Director
Director Of Clinical Operations
12 Yearsyrs
Registered Nurse Case Manager Registered Nurse Nurse Manager Nursing Director
Director Of Staff Development
8 Yearsyrs
Registered Nurse Supervisor Nurse Case Manager Nurse Manager
Emergency Services Director
10 Yearsyrs
Clinic Registered Nurse Nursing Director Director Of Health Services
Home Service Director
8 Yearsyrs
Registered Nurse In Pacu Registered Nurse Case Manager Clinical Services Director
Hospice Director
12 Yearsyrs
Clinic Registered Nurse Registered Nurse Nurse Manager Nurse Manager
Inpatient Services Director
12 Yearsyrs
Nurse Practitioner Staff Nurse
Managed Care Director
9 Yearsyrs
Nurse Manager Case Manager Clinical Manager
Manager Of Clinical Services
10 Yearsyrs
Clinical Coordinator Education Coordinator Paramedic
Medical Supervisor
5 Yearsyrs
Staff Nurse Registered Nurse Supervisor
Nurse Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Registered Nurse Supervisor Nurse Manager
Nursing Services Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Staff Nurse Case Manager
Patient Care Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Staff Nurse For Emergency Department Registered Nurse Supervisor Nurse Manager
Patient Relations Director
10 Yearsyrs
Agency Nurse Oncology Nurse Trauma Nurse
Trauma Program Manager
12 Yearsyrs
Nurse Manager Registered Nurse Case Manager Utilization Review Coordinator
Utilities Manager
9 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as an Emergency Department Registered Nurse?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Staff Nurse 5.9 years
Registered Nurse 5.2 years
Trauma Nurse 3.5 years
Pediatric Nurse 3.4 years
Top Employers Before
Staff Nurse 13.1%
Nurse 4.8%
Paramedic 2.6%
Top Employers After
Nurse 6.0%

Do you work as an Emergency Department Registered Nurse?

Emergency Department Registered Nurse Demographics

Gender

Female

78.9%

Male

19.8%

Unknown

1.4%
Ethnicity

White

64.2%

Hispanic or Latino

13.3%

Black or African American

11.9%

Asian

7.1%

Unknown

3.5%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

63.2%

Portuguese

4.7%

Korean

4.7%

German

2.8%

Japanese

2.8%

French

2.8%

Polish

2.8%

Swahili

1.9%

Chinese

1.9%

Ukrainian

1.9%

Mandarin

1.9%

Italian

1.9%

Bambara

0.9%

Luganda

0.9%

Russian

0.9%

Turkish

0.9%

Tagalog

0.9%

Cantonese

0.9%

Shan

0.9%
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Emergency Department Registered Nurse Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

14.3%

Walden University

11.7%

Grand Canyon University

9.4%

Chamberlain College of Nursing

7.9%

University of Texas at Arlington

7.0%

University of South Alabama

5.5%

Western Governors University

5.2%

South University

4.9%

Excelsior College

3.9%

University of Cincinnati

3.7%

University of Alabama at Birmingham

3.5%

Indiana Wesleyan University

3.2%

Ohio University -

3.0%

Kaplan University

3.0%

Jacksonville University

2.5%

Georgetown University

2.3%

University of Maryland - Baltimore

2.3%

Liberty University

2.3%

Maryville University of Saint Louis

2.2%

George Mason University

2.0%
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Majors

Nursing

82.7%

Family Practice Nursing

4.1%

Business

2.9%

Nursing Science

2.1%

Health Care Administration

1.3%

Health/Medical Preparatory Programs

0.9%

Education

0.8%

Management

0.8%

Clinical Psychology

0.7%

Psychology

0.5%

Public Health

0.5%

Liberal Arts

0.4%

Physician Assistant

0.4%

Health Sciences And Services

0.4%

Medicine

0.3%

Biology

0.2%

Medical Assisting Services

0.2%

Health And Wellness

0.2%

Nursing Assistants

0.2%

Medical Technician

0.2%
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Degrees

Bachelors

35.5%

Masters

32.4%

Associate

20.2%

Other

6.9%

Doctorate

2.5%

Certificate

1.2%

Diploma

1.0%

License

0.3%
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Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Emergency Department Registered Nurse Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Emergency Department RN Baptist Hospital of Miami, Inc. Miami, FL Sep 08, 2014 $83,960
Emergency Department RN Baptist Hospital of Miami, Inc. Miami, FL Sep 08, 2011 $83,042
Emergency Department RN Baptist Hospital of Miami, Inc. Miami, FL Oct 01, 2011 $79,035
Emergency Department RN Baptist Hospital of Miami, Inc. Miami, FL Mar 09, 2015 $76,781
Registered Nurse, Emergency Department Redlands Community Hospital Redlands, CA Oct 25, 2010 $75,132
Registered Nurse, Emergency Department Redlands Community Hospital Redlands, CA Dec 07, 2010 $75,132
Registered Nurse, Emergency Department Redlands Community Hospital Redlands, CA Oct 05, 2010 $75,132
Emergency Department RN Baptist Hospital of Miami, Inc. Miami, FL Mar 09, 2012 $73,066
Registered Nurse, Emergency Department Redlands Community Hospital Redlands, CA Dec 07, 2010 $69,080
Emergency Department Registered Nurse Brookhaven Memorial Hospital Medical Center Patchogue, NY Dec 15, 2009 $67,347 -
$39
Emergency Department RN Homestead Hospital, Inc. Homestead, FL Nov 10, 2014 $63,612
Emergency Department RN Baptist Hospital of Miami, Inc. Miami, FL Aug 07, 2011 $62,986
Emergency Department RN Homestead Hospital, Inc. Homestead, FL Nov 11, 2012 $61,775
Emergency Department RN Baptist Hospital of Miami, Inc. Miami, FL Aug 25, 2011 $61,170
Emergency Department RN Baptist Hospital of Miami, Inc. Miami, FL Jul 14, 2011 $59,396
Emergency Department RN Homestead Hospital, Inc. Homestead, FL Nov 10, 2011 $55,973
Emergency Department Registered Nurse Sierra Vista Hospital Truth or Consequences, NM Jan 01, 2011 $55,973
Emergency Department RN Homestead Hospital, Inc. Homestead, FL Oct 05, 2009 $54,345
Emergency Department RN Homestead Hospital, Inc. Homestead, FL Oct 04, 2010 $54,345
Emergency Department Registered Nurse Homestead Hospital, Inc. Homestead, FL Aug 05, 2009 $54,345
Emergency Department RN Palm Springs General Hospital Hialeah, FL Dec 15, 2009 $52,175
Emergency Department RN Ultimate Care Inc. Miami, FL Oct 01, 2009 $52,175
Emergency Department RN Ultimate Care Inc. Hialeah, FL Oct 01, 2009 $52,175

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Top Skills for An Emergency Department Registered Nurse

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  1. Trauma
  2. Emergency Department Patients
  3. Triage
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Performed triage and initial assessments of adult and pediatric patients presenting with trauma/medical/cardiac/neurological/gynecological/obstetric/psychiatric symptoms.
  • Measure and record time and motion studies for nursing care of emergency department patients to evaluate and enhance efficiency.
  • Key Accomplishment * Frequently assigned to triage patients due to strong customer service orientation and effective listening/communication skills.
  • Provided full emergency room nursing duties
  • Monitored critically ill patients and provided comprehensive nursing care to both adult and pediatric population.

How Would You Rate Working As an Emergency Department Registered Nurse?

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