Thursday, August 6, 2009

The Basics of Emergency Nursing

Nurses play a very important role in our healthcare system. From the very basic definition of nurses as healthcare providers, the field of nursing has largely expanded into a network of serving with various levels of education and expertise, and a wide range of specializations- one of which is emergency nursing.

What is an emergency room nurse?

Basically, an emergency room nurse is a health service provider who is expected to provide emergency care to patients. They are expected to work in the emergency ward of healthcare institutions, and/or in the field where the health or life of patients are at risk.

Normally, the roles of a professional emergency nurse include the implementation of first aid measures, the preparation for or the actual inspection of the patient’s condition, the notation of the patient’s vital signs such as the pulse-rate, blood pressure, body temperature prior to the actual subjection to required emergency room procedures.

After the preliminary procedures, the emergency nurse assists the attending physician in checking and monitoring the patient. He or she also helps the physician in delivering the required treatment for the patient. Below shows the basic roles of an emergency nurse:

a. Emergency nurses provide patient care. They may do so in emergency departments of hospitals, in urgent care centers, sports institutions, industrial firms, and in outdoor designations such as ships, airplanes, helicopters, accident sites, and in other places where injury prevention and health risk control are considered as top priorities.

b. Emergency nurses serve as educators as well since they are often engaged in health care awareness programs such as wellness promotion, injury prevention, violence preservation, and vehicle, drug, and/or equipment safety lectures.

c. Emergency nurses also work as researchers and/or leaders in their field.

What does it take to be a full pledged emergency nurse?

To be able to fulfill the goal of practicing emergency nursing, one needs to be a registered nurse first. This means that the nurse needs to have a diploma or a degree in nursing, and then after, acquire the particular nursing specialty.

Basically, the certification for emergency nursing grants the nurse with personal growth and more advanced career opportunities. In the case of the health care institutions, the certification allows them to ensure high standards of quality assurance since they can note down nurses who have acquired a defined body of nursing knowledge pertinent to emergency care as a particular specialty. Generally, the qualifying exam for emergency nursing certification is patterned after the career practice in the U.S.

After passing the CEN however, emergency nurses are often required to take role delineation studies, and/or regular refresher seminars every five years so as to assure that they are updated and informed of the latest issues and procedures in healthcare services.

Who helps emergency nurses?

Among the prominent institutions which support and promote emergency nursing are: the Emergency Nurses Association (ENA) which provides researches, publications, and courses and seminars on professional development and injury prevention for emergencvy nurses; the Board of Certification for Emergency Nurses (BCEN); the Emergency Nurses CARE (EN CARE) which is an organization that provides voluntary service to fifty states; and the Emergency Nurse Association Foundation (ENAF) which provides support for emergency nursing advancement though scholarships and research grants.


ENA Connection. Accessed March 2, 208 through

Journal of Emergency Nursing. Accessed March 2, 2008 through

International Hazard data Sheets on Occupation. Accessed March 2, 2008 through