What does an ER RN do?

Learn all about ER RN duties, skills and much more. Get expert advice on how to become an ER RN.

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Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 3 min read

An emergency room nurse provides care to patients who have been injured or who are suffering from a sudden illness. The nurse assesses the patient's condition, provides treatment, and monitors the patient's progress.

ER RN job duties include:

  • Assess patients' health condition and establish a nursing care plan
  • Monitor patients' vital signs and administer medications as necessary
  • Perform diagnostic tests, such as X-rays and blood work
  • Educate patients and their families on health and wellness
  • Assist physicians in performing procedures
  • Coordinate with other members of the healthcare team to ensure quality patient care
  • Keep accurate patient records
  • Maintain a clean and safe work environment
  • Handle emergency situations calmly and efficiently

ER RN Job Requirements

An ER RN must have a minimum of an Associate's Degree in Nursing, although a Bachelor of Science in Nursing is preferred. They must also be licensed as a Registered Nurse through their state's Board of Nursing. An ER RN should have at least 1-2 years of experience working in an emergency room setting, as well as ACLS and PALS certification.

ER RN Skills

  • Triage
  • Assessment
  • Airway management
  • Ventilator management
  • Cardiac monitoring
  • IV placement
  • Medication administration
  • Wound care
  • Patient education
  • Family support
  • Documentation
  • Time management

Related: Top ER RN Skills: Definition and Examples

How to become an ER RN

There are a few steps that one must take in order to become an emergency room nurse. The first is to obtain a registered nursing license, which requires completing an accredited nursing program and passing the NCLEX-RN exam. Once licensed, nurses can then begin working in an ER setting. Some nurses may choose to further their education by obtaining a bachelor's or master's degree in nursing, which can lead to advanced practice roles such as nurse practitioner or clinical nurse specialist. Additionally, nurses can pursue certification in emergency nursing through the Board of Certification for Emergency Nursing.

Related: ER RN Resume Example

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