A Guide to Understanding the Job of a Surgical Nurse

Table of Contents

With continuous innovations, surgical procedures are much safer today than ever before. However, they still need a knowledgeable and skilled team to pull off a successful surgery. One slip or mistake during these procedures can mean the difference between life and death. That’s the reason surgical teams include the most well-trained and competent doctors and nurses who are compensated very well for their expertise and time.

A Surgical Nurse is an expert in preoperative care. Simply put, it’s about providing care to the patients before, during, and after the surgery. They are trained professionally to work alongside surgical teams to make sure that patients are receiving the best possible care. They also serve as liaisons between the surgical team and the patient’s families. The journey starts by studying the best nursing program for international nurses and then gaining experience as a surgical nurse.

As a Surgical Nurse, you’ll help patients with recovery and teach them, and their families, about at-home post-operative care.Surgical nursing as a career can be very demanding. It is a career that makes a nurse stronger than you can ever imagine.

Further, most nursing students aren’t aware of the different roles a surgical nurse plays in the operating room. Have a look at the two most common ones here –

Surgical Nurse as a Circulating Nurse

The time of action of the Circulating Nurse is all three times – before, during, and after the surgery. The role of a circulating nurse starts before the surgery begins. Notably, Circulating Nurses do not generally stay in the sterile field while the surgical process goes on.

Circulating Nursing involves the following key responsibilities-

  • Meeting the patient before the surgery
  • Making sure all the paperwork needed is completed
  • Reviewing the consent forms
  • Answering the patient’s questions
  • Documenting the things placed for the surgery
  • Restocking the supplies in the sterile field if needed
  • Making sure all the surgical tools are accounted for after the surgery

Surgical Nurse as a Scrub Nurse

Entirely different from circulating nurses, Scrub Nurses play a different role in the operating room. First things first, the scrub nurses work in the sterile field.

The key responsibilities of Scrub Nurses are-

  • Getting the operating room ready for the surgical procedure
  • Assisting the surgeon in putting on the sterile scrubs
  • Organizing the supplies needed for the procedure
  • Preparing the patients before going into the OR
  • Attaching the monitors and positioning the patient for the procedure

The job of a surgical nurse often requires long hours, stressful situations, and exposure to some of life’s most unpleasant sights. Despite this, many pursue surgical nursing career every year, not just for the money, but also for the personal satisfaction. You can become an efficient surgical nurse with experience in areas such as recovery rooms and Intensive Care Units.

If you are in search of the specialty nursing programs for Filipino nurses in countries like Canada, Australia, NZ, the UK and the US, explore INSCOL today!


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