What Is the Role of a General Nurse?

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General nurses work in hospitals or outpatient facilities, where they provide care to patients by administering medications, managing intravenous lines and monitoring their health and conditions. In addition to hands-on care, general nurses maintain medical records, communicate with doctors and provide direction and supervision to aides to ensure quality medical care.

General nurses also provide emotional support to patients and their family members. General nurses often educate patients on their medical conditions and the associated care they are undertaking. General nurses are vital to help patients understand their health issues. They serve as a bridge between the doctor and the patient with regards to going over the patient’s treatment, subsequent home care and general health management practices, including self-administering medication.

General nurses must complete at least two years of formal education and procure a Registered-Nurse’s license. Many hospitals and medical offices require prospective general nurses to possess a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. According to the United States’ Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary for a general nurse was roughly $70,000 in 2013.

General nurses must be able to work the majority of medical equipment in their respective office. Experience operating medical equipment is necessary for the general nurse to perform diagnostic tests, treat medical emergencies and establish treatment plans.