What Is An ICU Nurse?

ICU nurses play an important role since they handle patients who need all the care they need. Intensive care units are where patients who have very vulnerable conditions are confined and they need skilled nurses who can look after them. ICU nurses are the in-demand nurses during the pandemic season and even before the pandemic season, they are needed by every hospital and other healthcare facilities. Check on ICU travel nurse jobs near you to know more about how to become an ICU nurse.

What Does A ICU Nurse Do?

ICU nurses have a long list of duties and responsibilities they need to finish during their shift and even after. They have to be skilled enough since ICU nurses’ task is challenging and demanding. 

Duties and Responsibilities of an ICU nurse 

Assessment and Evaluation of patients 

Patients need to be assessed they are admitted to an ICU and one of the staff that needs to do the assessment are ICU nurse. They have to determine the reason why the patient was admitted and also gather information about the patient both personal and also their medical history. All information should then be reported to the head of the medical team for proper action. 

Perform Procedures

As an ICU nurse, you are required to have knowledge of the procedures that are commonly done to patients in an ICU in that way you can assist the patients since most of them are not capable of doing the procedures without assistance. 

Work on Monitoring and other machines 

Monitoring machines and other devices are usually attached to the patient to closely monitor their condition. ICU nurses should know how to use and read the data on devices so they can determine if the patient’s condition is stable or not. It is important to know the vital status of the patients now and then to know if they need any procedure and medical care to put them in stable condition. 

What Education Does an ICU Nurse Need?

An ICU nurse should have finished RN by graduating with an ADN or BSN from an accredited nursing program and should pass the NCLEX which can give them the license they need to work as a nurse. Your license should be active and experience also counts aside from education. 

What Skills Does A ICU Nurse Need?

Critical Thinking 

Critical thinking is essential since patients in the ICU can have a high chance of getting in an emergency. Since their condition is not stable there are times when ICU nurses have to decide to do the right steps to save the patient’s life. In this situation, critical thinking and the ability to act fast is a must for ICU nurses. 

Advanced use of ventilators and tracheotomy tubes

Most nurses are using ventilators to stabilize their conditions and tracheotomy tubes are used to aid them with their breathing. Therefore ICU nurses are required to be experts in doing this procedure so they can perform their duties well. This skill is a must since the patients; life can be put at risk if the nurses are not skilled enough in using these devices. 

Knowledge and skills in Caring for pre-operative and post-operative patients

Patients in ICU usually have surgeries therefore ICU nurses should be able to give the care the patients needs before and after the operation. Which may include wound dressing, drainage tubes, and other procedures needed for the procedure. 

Good understanding of Technology and health information structure 

It is important for nurses to know the updated medical technology so they can perform their duties well. As a nurse in ICU, you will be encountering different conditions that need different approaches therefore having knowledge of health information structure is a must to give efficient care to each of your patients. 

Knowing the duties and responsibilities of an ICU nurse before becoming one can help you prepare yourself for the challenges and give you time to upgrade your skills if needed. ICU nursing job can be challenging but also rewarding since you can get higher pay plus give you an opportunity to enhance your skills and broaden your knowledge as well. Make sure to be ready when you take the job so you can be an efficient ICU nurse.

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