One of the most desired jobs in the nursing profession is one that actually requires the least amount of training. This is a job where the nurse assists surgeons in all types of surgical procedures. The nurse in this capacity is there from the time the patient checks in for their procedure until the operation is over; providing exceptional patient care and assistance to the physician throughout the surgical process. This job is called the perioperative nurse. The training required for this position is not much more than a Registered Nurse, although some experience as a general medicine nurse is recommended by most healthcare facilities.
Before Surgery Duties
The perioperative nurse or surgical nurse provides patient care from the time the patient checks into the facility until the time when their operation is over. This nurse will check the patient’s initial vital signs when they come in and take any needed reports that pertain to the patient’s current condition as well as any past medical problems they may have had. Additionally, this nurse will also start any IV’s that are required for the procedure as well as take any blood or other samples that are needed to ensure there are no other diseases or infections present in the patient.
During Surgery Duties
After the patient goes into the operating room, the perioperative nurse begins the core duties of the job. The nurse has the main responsibility of providing assistance to the surgeon in all aspects of the procedure. When it is a minor procedure that is not life-threatening, they will be in the operating room at all times monitoring the vital signs of the patient and providing assistance to the doctor when they are required to do so. This may involve procedures such as providing suction when the surgical area becomes clustered as well as bandaging any incision points in an effective manner that promotes healing and reduces the risk of infection. Should the procedure be complicated where the patient’s life is on the line, it will most likely take many hours; therefore, the surgical nurse will be responsible for updating any loved ones who are awaiting word of the patient’s status and the status of the operation.
The perioperative nurse is one of the most desired positions in the nursing field due in part to the excitement of the nature of the work as well as the available overtime pay that is available when working long surgeries. While this career does not require as much education as many other nursing careers, it does require hard work, experience, and dedication to the nursing profession as well as the ability to stand on your feet for multiple hours at one time. If you already have experience as a nurse, then you can begin working in the operating room as a surgical nurse without any additional qualifications required.