Among so many hospital jobs that you can find, it can be said that acute care nursing is one of the most challenging disciplines. In fact, acute care nurse is a front line care position that should perform a wide variety of tasks and must be prepared for diverse situations every day. If you are thinking about applying a nursing job, you can read the following information to figure out what kind of responsibilities and opportunities to expect.
What is acute care?
Commonly, acute care involves the treatment of patients diagnosed with short term but serious conditions. But, they are also able to take place in Accident&Emergency, Intensive Care and Neonatal Care. Several illnesses that an acute care nurse will usually face range from severe injury and chronic illness, to strokes and infectious diseases.
Besides performing a wide variety of medical tasks, they also have to perform administrative tasks. In detail, their jobs will be explained like this:
- The assessment and monitoring of patient conditions
- Checking symptoms and vital signs and arranging diagnostic tests
- Developing on-going care plans
- Administering intravenous drips or different types of medication
- Checking using specialized equipment such as monitors and ventilators
- Coordinate billing activities with supervising physicians
- Distinguish between normal and abnormal developmental and age-related physiological and behavioral changes in acute, critical, and chronic illness
- Manage patients’ pain relief and sedation by providing pharmacologic and non-pharmacologic interventions, monitoring patients’ responses, and changing care plans accordingly.
- Interpret information obtained from electrocardiograms (EKGs) or radiographs (x-rays).
- Set up, operate, or monitor invasive equipment and devices such as colostomy or tracheotomy equipment, mechanical ventilators, catheters, gastrointestinal tubes, and central lines.
According to PayScale, the average salary that can be earned annually by an acute care nurse practitioner is $96,574 per year. Moreover, this job will grow stronger to 26 percent from 2010 to 2020.