5 Ways to Improve Your Performance as an ER Nurse
As is the case with many medical occupations, emergency nursing is not as glamorous as it appears on television. With the emergency department’s fast-paced environment, it’s easy to get caught up in the mayhem. These suggestions can assist you in becoming an efficient emergency room nurse while also protecting your nursing license.
1. Forget Being a Task-Oriented Individual
A nurse’s shift will consist of a series of tasks. Numerous examinations must be completed, drugs must be administered, and paperwork must be written. Despite the fact that emergency nursing has a plethora of functions to do, it is far from a task-oriented field. Emergency room patients face a variety of complications, ranging from broken fingers to lethal trauma. With limited information about a patient’s state, which may be rapidly deteriorating, nurses must constantly assess and adapt the treatment plan to meet the patient’s regularly changing demands. Planning your shift is about more than crossing off tasks on a to-do list; it’s about making sure that your patients receive safe and appropriate care regardless of the conditions.
Prioritization is one of the abilities that emergency nurses develop to a high level of proficiency. Even when patients are critically ill and the waiting room is crowded, it is crucial to manage priorities. Knowing how and when to prioritize, especially particular for a new nurse, may appear to be an onerous undertaking. However, with time, it becomes easier. Acquiring a better understanding of clinical indicators of deterioration and improving clinical judgment abilities (sometimes referred to as ‘nursing intuition’) might assist in determining which tasks to accomplish first. Hospitals frequently have protocols in place for urgent situations such as a possible heart attack or stroke.
3. Make the Most of Your Expertise
Nurses are experts in nursing science, which enables them to detect when something is wrong with a patient and motivates them to intervene. It is critical for nurses to pay close attention to this clinical judgment and act on their instincts. Advocating for patients, even when it is difficult, is a critical component of nursing. This is also why the public continues to place such a high premium on nurses year after year. Addressing patients’ concerns and making clinical judgments can mean the difference between life and death.
4. Don’t Be Afraid To Ask Questions
Develop an ability to ask questions. No two days at the emergency room are alike, and nurses will frequently come into contact with patients suffering from a variety of acute and chronic diseases. Especially at the beginning, nurses will encounter a plethora of new symptoms, laboratory results, illnesses, and worries. As a result, it is critical to ask questions.
Utilize the opportunity to interact closely with physicians, experienced nurses, pharmacists, and other interdisciplinary personnel, and continue to learn from people in your immediate vicinity. Being a competent emergency department nurse requires you to constantly act in your patient’s best interest. When in doubt, it is prudent to consult additional resources before making a decision. Emergency room nurses are frequently confronted with novel techniques and drugs. It is vital for nurses to understand the purpose, potential adverse effects, and desired outcome of any drug or treatment before providing it.
5. Remember Where You Are
With frequent alarms, notifications, and machines blaring, it’s easy to become swept up in the emergency department’s commotion. Patients are being admitted and discharged at a breakneck speed, and orders are stacking up. Throughout this, emergency nurses are on hand to give treatments and provide care and comfort to patients.
Meanwhile, patients and their families are experiencing the worst symptoms and emotions of their lives in the emergency room. Their emergency room visit may be their first encounter with a catastrophic illness, or it may mark the conclusion of a protracted battle with a chronic condition for a loved one. Regardless of the circumstance, nurses are available to provide assistance to patients and families in times of need. Even when things are hectic, nurses must remain cognizant of their patients’ concerns. A small act of kindness toward a patient or a loved one can mean the world. A few minutes spent explaining the next treatment or holding a patient’s hand during a painful test can make a world of difference to their experience. Patients may be unwilling to cooperate as a result of a negative prior experience or fear. Nurses can allay these fears by remaining vigilant, real, and caring.
Art, Science, and Caring
Effective nursing practice in any specialty requires a blend of art and science. Each shift, emergency nurses make a difference with their superior experience, sound clinical judgment, and ability to care. By keeping in mind that nursing is concerned with the physical and emotional well-being of the patient, nurses can develop effective care plans without sacrificing personal connection and empathy.