By Gladys Mae
Gladys is the Associate Director of Admissions & Student Services with over 10 years of experience at the International Career Institute.
Do you want to help people every day? Working as a nurse or a nurse assistant is a great way to do just that. You can get some major career satisfaction by helping to provide care and support to patients in a healthcare environment on a daily basis. What’s more, nursing and assistant nursing roles are some of the most popular healthcare occupations in Australia.
But what’s it really like to work in those roles? Read on to learn about the real-life duties of a nurse and nurse assistant.
A nurse cares for anyone who’s sick or infirm, from babies to the elderly. They make sure every patient receives the best possible care regardless of who they are or where they are. They’re also indispensable in safeguarding public health, as they ensure the most accurate diagnoses and educate the public about critical health issues.
A nurse may work at a hospital, clinic, private practice, nursing home, residential care facility, school, or state prison. There are also various types of nurses, including registered nurses, licensed practical nurses, and nursing assistants. Nurses can work irregular hours like at night, on the weekends, and during holidays.
The degree of responsibility varies between the different types of nurses, but their duties are mostly similar.
When patients arrive, a nurse will assess them based on their physiological, economic, social, and lifestyle factors by conducting physical exams, asking questions, and checking a patient’s medical history. They’ll make a diagnosis based on a patient’s physical symptoms and behaviour. In some situations, nurses need to provide instant care for medical emergencies like strokes, heart attacks, burns, and car accidents.
Nurses are responsible for accurately implementing care and treatment plans, and documenting the patient’s progress by recording changes in their behaviour and conditions. They analyse the effectiveness of the plan and study the patient’s response, making adjustments where necessary to achieve the best outcome for the patient.
At the same time, nurses provide care and support to patients and their families, making sure they’re comfortable, well-fed, and hydrated. They also assist patients before and after procedures, checking their vitals like blood pressure or temperature, and looking for signs that their health is improving or deteriorating.
Nurses also advise patients on how to administer medication and physical therapy on their own, including educating patients and the public on medical conditions, disease management, and nutritional plans. They also develop quality assurance procedures, give vaccinations, run blood drives, establish nursing practice standards, implement research outcomes, maintain safe and hygienic work environments, and act as lines of communication between patients and doctors.
As previously mentioned, one particular type of nurse is a nurse assistant. This nurse provides help and support for other nurses that are generally for working with the elderly and disabled people who need long-term care.
Nurse assistants are beneficial as they help nurses get things done faster. This is because they act as a nurse’s eyes and ears by spending time with the patients and getting to know them in a way that nurses don’t really have time to. Nurse assistants might notice certain symptoms and then pass this information onto a nurse, which could actually end up saving the patient’s life. They can also help a nurse to diagnose a patient’s medical problem by taking and recording vital signs. A vital job of a nursing assistant is to help quickly set up exam rooms in between appointments by laying out the tools for procedures.
While working under the direction and supervision of a nurse, as a nurse assistant you’ll have to do the following tasks:
If you’re interested in being a nurse, you can start your career by studying the Nursing Assistant Executive Diploma from the International Career Institute. The course equips you with the skills and knowledge you need to be able to care for people, handle tough situations, and motivate others to improve with every step. You can complete your studies in just one year and then kick-off your nursing career as a nurse assistant. Enrol today!