ER Nurse Job Description

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Table Of Contents

Learn about the important requirements, obligations, responsibilities, and skills that should be in an ER nurse job description. 

ER nurses are RNs who work in the emergency room, which is a critical care environment devoted to treating patients with acute medical conditions. These nurses assist doctors and other medical practitioners in assessing and treating emergent illnesses, injuries, and allergic reactions. ER nurses provide initial assessments, triage patients to prioritize the most severe conditions, and perform diagnostic tests. 

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ER Nurse Job Description Template

We are looking for a highly dedicated registered nurse with a passion for providing compassionate, skilled care and at least two years of experience in an emergency room environment. ER nurses are an essential part of our acute care medical team, assisting other practitioners with the assessment, triage, and treatment of illness, trauma, and injury. 

ER Nurse Responsibilities

This role includes the following responsibilities: 

  • Manage care for patients experiencing acute illnesses, injuries, trauma, or allergic reactions 
  • Assess patient care needs to determine prioritization of treatment
  • Stabilize patients for further treatment 
  • Monitor vital signs
  • Perform diagnostic tests
  • Document patient care and communicate with the healthcare team
  • Administer medication and perform medical procedures according to doctors’ instructions, e.g. set broken bones, perform intubations, and start intravenous lines 
  • Administer patient education including follow-up care instructions
  • Provide emotional support to patients, caregivers, and family

ER Nurse Requirements 

The successful candidate will meet these requirements:

  • Associate or bachelor’s degree in nursing from an accredited institution 
  • Current [state] nursing license in good standing
  • CPR certification
  • Basic Life Support (BLS) certification
  • Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) certification (may be acquired within a certain time period after hire)
  • Additional certifications, e.g. Certified Emergency Nursing (CEN) or Trauma Nursing Core Course (TNCC)
  • Able to pass background checks and drug screening (in accordance with state laws)
  • Meets physical requirements, e.g., can lift 30 pounds, sit and stand for X period of time (again, consult state laws regarding limitations on these requirements) 
  • X years of experience as a registered nurse 
  • X years of experience as an ER nurse or RN in critical care settings
  • Emotional intelligence, empathy, and compassion
  • Ability to work in stressful situations
  • Communication skills
  • Critical thinking and problem-solving skills
  • Ability to work as a member of a team

ER Nurse Duties And Responsibilities

Assess Patient Care Needs

The ER nurse will triage patients to determine prioritization of care, diagnostic testing, and other requirements. The nurse will help stabilize patients, document symptoms, and elevate concerns to other medical practitioners. This practitioner must be able to multitask effectively while providing excellent patient care. 

Work As Part Of Healthcare Team

Emergency departments depend on seamless cooperation between members of the healthcare team including registered nurses, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and physicians, as well as unlicensed personnel like nursing assistants and medical technicians. The successful candidate will have demonstrable experience developing care plans and administering treatments as a member of a healthcare team in a stressful, high-pressure environment.

Document Patient Care 

The registered nurse will document all patient symptoms as well as their medical history. ER nursing notes will include vital signs, medications, reported symptoms, and observed conditions. The ER nurse must be able to communicate these notes verbally while giving report to floor staff, as well as documenting them in patient care documents. 

Administer Treatment

The ER nurse will clean and treat wounds, as well as administer medication and treatment in accordance with a physician’s order and state law. Treatments and procedures may include sutures, splinting and setting bones, placing central lines or chest tubes, and administering transfusions. The ER nurse may also run ACLS-based codes on critically ill patients. 

Provide Patient Education 

The ER nurse will provide education to patients, caregivers, and family members. This education may include treatment plans, medication regimens, follow-up appointments, and referrals. 

Do you want to become a nurse? Learn everything you need to know in our guide about how to become a nurse. To update your nursing resume, we recommend working with a resume writing service.

ER Nurse Salary And Job Outlook

Median National Salary: $86,737/year

Education Required: Registered nurses typically begin their career with an associate or bachelor’s degree in nursing, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Some hospitals may require or give preference to candidates with a bachelor’s degree. ER nurses typically have BLS and ACLS certifications and may have specialty certifications like CEN or TNCC. 

Number of Jobs: 3,172,500

Job Growth 2020 – 2030: 6% (Faster than average)

The Bottom Line

ER nurses are on the front line of emergency departments, providing care to patients with a wide range of injuries, illnesses, and conditions. To find the best candidate for your ER nurse job, you’ll want to write a job description that includes not only your requirements, necessary qualifications, and desired skillsets, but also a sense of the challenges and opportunities your role will provide. 

Ready to hire your dream candidate? Post your ER nurse job description on ZipRecruiter and find skilled ER nurses near you.