A senior registered nurse is a superior healthcare professional who provides high-quality palliative care to patients and their families. Senior registered nurses are required to liaise between patients and other healthcare professionals, such as physicians, occupational therapists, and physiotherapists. They lead a team of registered nurses and care assistants to ensure that they follow the hospital's best practice care standards. Senior registered nurses also administer and order medicines as required by patients and the hospital's policies and procedures.

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Senior Registered Nurse Responsibilities

Here are examples of responsibilities from real senior registered nurse resumes representing typical tasks they are likely to perform in their roles.

  • Code team member, triage, manage a team of 5 patients and 3 providers.
  • Manage patient pain relief and sedation by providing pharmacological and non-pharmacological intervention, monitor patient response and record care plans accordingly.
  • Care for critically ill patients in the ICU.
  • Provide triage, referrals, direct nursing care, and medication administration to incarcerate population.
  • Elbow support for new Cerner EMR system.
  • Implement and coordinate unit education programs covering CPR and newborn care.
  • Provide & conduct training, direction, and guidance for rehabilitation staff.
  • Work as a charge nurse on an orthopedic and acute rehabilitation unit.
  • Enhance professional growth by attending educational opportunities pertaining to ICU nursing.
  • Combine advance medical knowledge and technical expertise with compassion and strong interpersonal skills.
  • Instill confidence and positive attitude toward new EMR documentation with minimal disruption of workflows.
  • Develop, implement, and evaluate plans of care for the medical-surgical and oncology patient populations.
  • Administer intravenous medications, blood and blood products, oral medications, injections and monitor patients for effectiveness of medications administer.
  • Furnish extensive emotional and educational support to patients and family members regarding patient progress, prognosis, preparation and post-operative procedures.
  • Manage patient pain relief and sedation by providing pharmacological and non-pharmacological intervention, monitor patient response and record care plans accordingly.

Senior Registered Nurse Job Description

When it comes to understanding what a senior registered nurse does, you may be wondering, "should I become a senior registered nurse?" The data included in this section may help you decide. Compared to other jobs, senior registered nurses have a growth rate described as "much faster than average" at 12% between the years 2018 - 2028, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In fact, the number of senior registered nurse opportunities that are predicted to open up by 2028 is 371,500.

A senior registered nurse annual salary averages $74,261, which breaks down to $35.7 an hour. However, senior registered nurses can earn anywhere from upwards of $49,000 to $111,000 a year. This means that the top-earning senior registered nurses make $54,000 more than the lowest-earning ones.

As is the case with most jobs, it takes work to become a senior registered nurse. Sometimes people change their minds about their career after working in the profession. That's why we looked into some other professions that might help you find your next opportunity. These professions include a nurse extern, staff nurse, head nurse, and advanced registered nurse practitioner.

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5 Senior Registered Nurse Resume Examples

Senior Registered Nurse Skills and Personality Traits

We calculated that 14% of Senior Registered Nurses are proficient in Patients, Home Health, and Acute Care. They’re also known for soft skills such as Communication skills, Compassion, and Detail oriented.

We break down the percentage of Senior Registered Nurses that have these skills listed on their resume here:

  • Patients, 14%

    Administer intravenous medications, blood and blood products, oral medications, injections and monitor patients for effectiveness of medications administered.

  • Home Health, 9%

    Coordinated with doctors, clinics, home health agencies and hospice to develop care plans for residents.

  • Acute Care, 6%

    Provided acute care nursing services to adults on a fast-paced, medical/surgical/telemetry unit in a major, metropolitan, teaching hospital.

  • Care Coordination, 6%

    Manage a team of 8 direct reports in providing care coordination for Medicaid and SCHIP recipients.

  • Discharge Planning, 5%

    Coordinated multidisciplinary teams to provide safe discharge planning and follow-up teaching referrals.

  • BLS, 5%

    Provide stabilization, Resuscitation and other life support measures in cases of arrests in line with ACLS, BLS.2.

"patients," "home health," and "acute care" aren't the only skills we found senior registered nurses list on their resumes. In fact, there's a whole list of senior registered nurse responsibilities that we found, including:

  • Communication skills can be considered to be the most important personality trait for a senior registered nurse to have. According to a senior registered nurse resume, "registered nurses must be able to communicate effectively with patients in order to understand their concerns and assess their health conditions" senior registered nurses are able to use communication skills in the following example we gathered from a resume: "administer medications, maintain ivs, facilitate admissions and transfers, therapeutic communication with patients and families. "
  • Another commonly found skill for being able to perform senior registered nurse duties is the following: compassion. According to a senior registered nurse resume, "registered nurses should be caring and empathetic when looking after patients." Check out this example of how senior registered nurses use compassion: "combine advanced medical knowledge and technical expertise with compassion and strong interpersonal skills. "
  • Detail oriented is also an important skill for senior registered nurses to have. This example of how senior registered nurses use this skill comes from a senior registered nurse resume, "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." Read this excerpt from a resume to understand how vital it is to their everyday roles and responsibilities, "administer medication as per dr's order with details to the rights of medication administration. "
  • A thorough review of lots of resumes revealed to us that "emotional stability" is important to completing senior registered nurse responsibilities. This resume example shows just one way senior registered nurses use this skill: "registered nurses need emotional resilience and the ability to manage their emotions to cope with human suffering, emergencies, and other stresses." Here's an example of how this skill is used from a resume that represents typical senior registered nurse tasks: "established therapeutic relationship and provided emotional support to patients and families during challenging moments during their hospital stay. "
  • Another common skill for a senior registered nurse to be able to utilize is "organizational skills." Nurses often work with multiple patients with various health needs a senior registered nurse demonstrated the need for this skill by putting this on their resume: "displayed excellent interpersonal, professionalism and organizational skills while working as an independent rn on site. "
  • While "physical stamina" is listed last on this skills list, don't underestimate its importance to senior registered nurse responsibilities. The skill is described by this resume snippet, "nurses should be comfortable performing physical tasks, such as moving patients" Here is an example of how this skill is used, "coordinated discharge planning in collaboration with the medical team, care coordinator, social work, and physical and occupational therapy. "
  • See the full list of senior registered nurse skills.

    We've found that 51.1% of senior registered nurses have earned a bachelor's degree. Furthermore, 6.8% earned their master's degrees before becoming a senior registered nurse. While it's true that most senior registered nurses have a college degree, it's generally possible to become one with only a high school degree. In fact, one out of every six senior registered nurses did not spend the extra money to attend college.

    Those senior registered nurses who do attend college, typically earn either nursing degrees or nursing science degrees. Less commonly earned degrees for senior registered nurses include psychology degrees or business degrees.

    When you're ready to become a senior registered nurse, you might wonder which companies hire senior registered nurses. According to our research through senior registered nurse resumes, senior registered nurses are mostly hired by BAYADA Home Health Care, Sharp HealthCare, and Parkland Hospital. Now is a good time to apply as BAYADA Home Health Care has 171 senior registered nurses job openings, and there are 132 at Sharp HealthCare and 65 at Parkland Hospital.

    But if you're interested in companies where you might earn a high salary, senior registered nurses tend to earn the biggest salaries at Dignity Health, Providence Health & Services, and Mercy Health. Take Dignity Health for example. The median senior registered nurse salary is $129,981. At Providence Health & Services, senior registered nurses earn an average of $121,491, while the average at Mercy Health is $121,068. You should take into consideration how difficult it might be to secure a job with one of these companies.

    View more details on senior registered nurse salaries across the United States.

    We also looked into companies who hire senior registered nurses from the top 100 educational institutions in the U.S. The top three companies that hire the most from these institutions include St Joseph's Hospital, Kaiser Permanente, and Massachusetts General Hospital.

    The three companies that hire the most prestigious senior registered nurses are:

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    What Nurse Externs Do

    The job of a nurse extern is to assist the mentor nurse in their nursing duties. They help the mentor nurse in various medical procedures such as administering medications or starting intravenous therapies. They provide or help with personal patient care, including changing bed linens, oral hygiene, and bathing. Nurse externships typically have different requirements that include having finished nursing school, completing a clinical nursing course before the training, and being registered in a nursing program.

    In this section, we compare the average senior registered nurse annual salary with that of a nurse extern. Typically, nurse externs earn a $37,105 lower salary than senior registered nurses earn annually.

    While their salaries may differ, one common ground between senior registered nurses and nurse externs are a few of the skills required in each craft. In both careers, employees bring forth skills like patients, discharge planning, and patient safety.

    There are some key differences in responsibilities as well. For example, a senior registered nurse responsibilities require skills like "home health," "acute care," "care coordination," and "bls." Meanwhile a typical nurse extern has skills in areas such as "direct supervision," "patient care," "medical-surgical," and "blood pressure." This difference in skills reveals how truly different these two careers really are.

    Nurse externs really shine in the health care industry with an average salary of $39,085. Whereas senior registered nurses tend to make the most money in the health care industry with an average salary of $85,104.

    Nurse externs tend to reach similar levels of education than senior registered nurses. In fact, nurse externs are 1.8% less likely to graduate with a Master's Degree and 0.1% less likely to have a Doctoral Degree.

    What Are The Duties Of a Staff Nurse?

    Staff nurses are registered nurses who are usually assigned to work in a care home, a company, or in a clinical setting. They advise the physical assessments of patients, employees, and residents. They also handle the checking of vital signs, providing basic medical procedures, giving first aid, and, if possible, providing over the counter medication. Staff nurses provide medical attention to the people in their place of assignment. They help pave the path to their patients' full recovery. Staff nurses are expected to be patient and have good interpersonal skills.

    Next up, we have the staff nurse profession to look over. This career brings along a lower average salary when compared to a senior registered nurse annual salary. In fact, staff nurses salary difference is $5,919 lower than the salary of senior registered nurses per year.

    While the salary may be different for these job positions, there is one similarity and that's a few of the skills needed to perform certain duties. We used info from lots of resumes to find that both senior registered nurses and staff nurses are known to have skills such as "patients," "acute care," and "discharge planning. "

    While some skills are similar in these professions, other skills aren't so similar. For example, several resumes showed us that senior registered nurse responsibilities requires skills like "home health," "care coordination," "community resources," and "medical necessity." But a staff nurse might use skills, such as, "dexterity," "oncology," "quality care," and "manual dexterity."

    On average, staff nurses earn a lower salary than senior registered nurses. There are industries that support higher salaries in each profession respectively. Interestingly enough, staff nurses earn the most pay in the health care industry with an average salary of $58,739. Whereas, senior registered nurses have higher paychecks in the health care industry where they earn an average of $85,104.

    When it comes to the differences in education between the two professions, staff nurses tend to reach similar levels of education than senior registered nurses. In fact, they're 1.5% less likely to graduate with a Master's Degree and 0.1% less likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

    How a Head Nurse Compares

    An advanced registered nurse practitioner (ARNP) is responsible for patient care. An ARNP may practice independently or work with other healthcare professionals such as physicians. Your duties typically include examining patients and determining diagnosis by physical examination, patient history, and other medical assessments, admitting, managing, and discharging patients to and from medical facilities, and managing health care by developing, implementing, and evaluating treatment and care plans for patients. You will also be responsible for referring patients to other health care service providers or facilities.

    Let's now take a look at the head nurse profession. On average, these workers make higher salaries than senior registered nurses with a $5,912 difference per year.

    By looking over several senior registered nurses and head nurses resumes, we found that both roles utilize similar skills, such as "patients," "acute care," and "discharge planning." But beyond that the careers look very different.

    There are many key differences between these two careers as shown by resumes from each profession. Some of those differences include the skills required to complete responsibilities within each role. As an example of this, a senior registered nurse is likely to be skilled in "home health," "care coordination," "community resources," and "rehabilitation," while a typical head nurse is skilled in "oncology," "patient care," "clinical supervision," and "medical assistants."

    Additionally, head nurses earn a higher salary in the education industry compared to other industries. In this industry, they receive an average salary of $80,362. Additionally, senior registered nurses earn an average salary of $85,104 in the health care industry.

    When it comes to education, head nurses tend to earn similar education levels than senior registered nurses. In fact, they're 1.6% more likely to earn a Master's Degree, and 0.2% more likely to graduate with a Doctoral Degree.

    Description Of an Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner

    The fourth career we look at typically earns higher pay than senior registered nurses. On average, advanced registered nurse practitioners earn a difference of $23,559 higher per year.

    While both senior registered nurses and advanced registered nurse practitioners complete day-to-day tasks using similar skills like patients, home health, and acute care, the two careers also vary in other skills.

    Even though a few skill sets overlap, there are some differences that are important to note. For one, a senior registered nurse might have more use for skills like "care coordination," "discharge planning," "bls," and "community resources." Meanwhile, some advanced registered nurse practitioners might include skills like "arnp," "patient care," "diagnosis," and "health problems" on their resume.

    In general, advanced registered nurse practitioners make a higher salary in the health care industry with an average of $103,277. The highest senior registered nurse annual salary stems from the health care industry.

    The average resume of advanced registered nurse practitioners showed that they earn higher levels of education to senior registered nurses. So much so that the likelihood of them earning a Master's Degree is 44.8% more. Additionally, they're more likely to earn a Doctoral Degree by 2.3%.