The role of nursing, in general, and that of a registered nurse, in particular, is important when it comes to healthcare and service to the patient suffering from some sort of ailment or disease for which he or she approached the hospital for assistance. It is no wonder that more than 50% of the workforce in the health care industry, in general, represent the nursing profession in one way or the other.
The first person that would be interacting with a patient in a hospital, or a nursing home, or a clinic will be none other than the registered nurse. It is this registered nurse, assisted by a team of subordinates – either licensed practical nurses or certified nursing assistants, who meets the patient, gets to know about the disease and the intensity, provide first aid treatment in case of emergency, carry out the basic procedure and arrange for an appointment with the doctor.
What are the basic procedures that a registered nurse does on a routine basis?
Assessment of a new patient, especially his or her health history, health or wellness related issues, background about the education and employment, eating habits, and/or other habits are some of the basic things that a registered nurse will have to do as a basic procedure. The registered nurse can direct the certified nursing assistant or licensed vocational nurse to carry out this basic procedure. The assessment of the basic details will be effectively used by the registered nurse when it comes to devising plans for effective treatment of the patient, including diet plans.
Another basic procedure which a registered nurse will normally do either himself or herself, or else direct the subordinates to carry out is related to medication. Obtaining the prescription from the doctor attending the patient and administering the required medication in appropriate dosages at regular intervals as may be prescribed by the doctor is the responsibility of the registered nurse. As part of the procedure, the registered nurse has to educate the patient and the family members accompanying the patient about the medication, frequency of administering the medication, and the importance of medication at frequent intervals. The registered nurse should also advise the patient and the family members about the precautions a patient should take during and after the treatment.
It is the responsibility of the registered nurse to take readings of the vital signs at frequent intervals. The important tests include temperature, blood pressure and pulse reading. Some duties are performed only by the registered nurses. Administration of oxygen to patients having trouble with normal breathing is normally done only by a registered nurse. Again, the most important procedure which every registered nurse should ensure is that the vital signs are functioning properly, and any discrepancy should be reported to the doctor as early as possible, as deterioration or change in the readings of the vital signs can prove detrimental to the patient’s health and might even lead to loss of life if not attended to immediately.
It is the responsibility of a registered nurse to carry out the required procedure for obtaining results from a blood test. Procedure involving administering IV fluids to patients is also the responsibilities of a registered nurse.