The Best Nurse Coffee Mugs (2023)

The Best Nurse Coffee Mugs (2023)

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Hey Nurses, Don’t Forget Your Coffee!

Whether you are an ICU or ER nurse, work in labor and delivery, or anything in-between, nursing can be a tough gig, and great nurse mugs can help make your day easier.

These mugs keep your coffee or tea (or even your favorite hot chocolate!) hot during long shifts, making sure you’re slow sipping all morning. Plus, they look great, too – with inspirational quotes to remind you of how strong nurses are no matter what the day throws at them.

Whether you are gifting yourself a nurse mug, giving one as an appreciation gift to a fellow colleague, or purchasing a gift to make your favorite nursing student smile, these nurse mugs will help boost morale as they show just how much appreciation there is for this life-saving profession.

With stylish designs and eye-catching colors, everyone will recognize who they belong to! These make great gifts for any occasion at an affordable price point.

Check out this selection of the highest-rated registered nurse mugs available on Amazon, and get yours today before they sell out!

women drinking out of coffee mug

Great Nurses Need Great Tea & Coffee Mugs

Nurses are the unsung heroes of the medical industry. They are the ones tirelessly working day and night to help patients and keep them comfortable. But we know being a nurse can be tough, hectic, and stressful. That’s why we decided to bring you the best range of nurse coffee cups and travel mugs to help you relax while you enjoy a nice cup of coffee.

These cups and mugs are not only practical gifts, but also a great conversation starter gift for fellow nurses.

The Best Nurse Coffee Mugs And Cups For Nurses

Now that we know that coffee and tea are not only essential items for our daily function as nurses and also may benefit our brains and body, there is also only one more thing left to do. And that is to find the best nurse coffee mugs to take home to enjoy your delicious brew.

With no further ado and in no particular order, here are the best nurse coffee mugs you will love for years to come!

#1. I’m a Nurse, What’s Your Superpower? Light Blue 18 Oz Mug


Why We Love It

Very cute and nurse supportive of the nursing profession!

Product Features

  • Material: Porcelain
  • Blue color
  • Capacity: 1.1 Pounds
  • Dishwasher Safe

#2. Chaos Coordinator Mug Tumbler -14oz Purple


Why We Love It

These make a unique gift Idea for a registered nurse, mom, or other loved one.

The tumbler features double-wall vacuum insulation, ensuring beverages stay at the ideal temperature (hot or cold) for an extended period. It can accommodate various drinks, with favorites such as wine, juice, coffee, or tea.

Constructed from 18/8 food-grade stainless steel, this tumbler is durable, resistant to rust, and doesn’t impart any flavors. It comes with a clear BPA-free lid.

Product Features

  • Stainless steel
  • Capacity 14 ounces
  • Rust proof
  • Break resistant

#3. Chaos Coordinator 14 oz Coffee Mug


Why We Love It

This is a classy and sarcastic stainless steel coffee mug tumbler that features the funny boss saying: “Chaos Coordinator Fueled By Caffeine” in white print on the front

Product Features

  • Vacuum-insulated stainless steel cool mug tumbler
  • Keeps drinks hot for 4 to 6 hours and cold for 9 to 12 hours
  • High quality and durable, perfect for long-lasting temperature retention
  • 14 ounces in size, perfect for your coffee
  • Spill-resistant clear lid with a straw hole and slide cover
  • It can be used with or without a straw

#4. I Will Stab You – Nurse Mug


Why We Love It

Cute, personalized stainless steel coffee travel mug for female nurses. Screen printed with the saying: “I Will Stab You” in white print on the front.

Product Features

  • Keeps drinks hot for 4 to 6 hours and cold for 9 to 12 hours
  • High quality and durable for long-lasting temperature retention
  • Perfect size travel cup for coffee, 14 ounces
  • Dimensions: 3.75″ x 4.25″
  • Includes a spill-resistant clear lid with a straw hole and slide cover
  • High quality and convenient for sipping with or without a straw

#5. Coffee Mug with A Fun Prescription


Why We Love It

This is the perfect addition to your coffee cup collection! This cute mug labels prescribing coffee as a solution for every problem. A funny way to start your day.

Product Features

  • Porcelain mug
  • Imported
  • Hilarious Coffee Mugs:
  • 12 oz coffee mug
  • Hand wash recommended
  • Not microwave-safe

How We Choose The Best Nurse Mugs

Here are a few things we considered when picking the best nurse mugs:

  • Material (ceramic, porcelain, glass, or stoneware for durability and heat retention)
  • Insulation
  • Handle (a comfortable and securely attached handle for easy and safe gripping.
  • Size and capacity
  • Lip and rim design
  • Colors, design, and aesthetics
  • Easy to clean
  • Durability

These features should help you make an informed decision when selecting the best coffee mug for your kitchen and unique sipping needs.

Coffee Has Many Health Benifits

Developing a coffee habit wasn’t the worst thing in the world for me. After all, there is scientific evidence that drinking coffee may be beneficial to overall health in many ways, including:

#1. Drinking coffee may undo liver damage caused by booze.

Even though my college party days are long behind me, this was still great news to hear. Researchers analyzed data from nine previously published studies with a total of more than 430,000 participants – and found that drinking two additional cups of coffee a day was linked to a 44% lower risk of developing liver cirrhosis!

#2: Coffee may help you live longer.

A Stanford University study that tracked 100 people over several years found that coffee drinkers tended to live longer lives than non-coffee drinkers. The authors theorized that increased caffeine consumption might counteract the “fundamental inflammatory mechanism associated with human aging.”

#3: Regular coffee consumption may be good for your heart and brain.

The American Heart Association and the University of Colorado School of Medicine found that the risk of heart failure or stroke went down 8 percent for each additional cup of coffee per day.

What Features Make A Great Coffee Mug?

When considering what features make a great coffee mug (different from a tumbler), several factors come into play. Here are some features to consider:


The material of the coffee mug plays a significant role in its quality. Common materials include ceramic, porcelain, glass, and stoneware. Ceramic and porcelain mugs are popular choices as they retain heat well, are durable, and offer a pleasing aesthetic. Glass mugs provide visibility, allowing you to appreciate the color and texture of your coffee. Stoneware mugs are known for their durability and rustic charm.


While coffee mugs are not typically insulated like tumblers, a well-designed mug should still have some heat-retention properties. Thicker walls and materials like ceramic or stoneware can help retain the heat of your beverage for a longer time.


A comfortable and well-designed handle is essential for a great coffee mug. It should be large enough to fit your fingers comfortably, allowing you to hold the mug without burning yourself. The handle should also be sturdy and securely attached to the mug to prevent accidents.

Size and Capacity

Coffee mugs come in various sizes and capacities. Consider how much coffee you typically drink and choose a mug size that suits your preferences. Keep in mind that a larger capacity mug may cool down faster than a smaller one.

Lip and Rim Design

The lip or rim of the mug should be smooth and comfortable to drink from. It should have a slight outward curve to prevent spills and allow for easy sipping. Avoid mugs with sharp or uncomfortable edges that could make drinking less enjoyable.

Design and Aesthetics

The color and appearance of the mug can contribute to your overall coffee-drinking experience. Choose a design that you find visually appealing and matches your personal style. Some mugs feature patterns, colors, or artistic designs that can enhance your enjoyment of the coffee.

Easy to Clean

A great coffee mug should be easy to clean, either by hand or in the dishwasher. Smooth surfaces and accessible shapes make cleaning more convenient. It’s also important to consider whether the mug is microwave-safe if you prefer to reheat your coffee.


Look for and create a coffee mug that is durable and resistant to chipping or cracking. High-quality materials and well-made construction contribute to the longevity of the mug, ensuring it can withstand daily use without losing its functionality or aesthetic appeal.

Ultimately, the ideal coffee mug is subjective and depends on your personal preferences. Considering these features will help you find and select a mug that suits your needs and enhances your coffee-drinking experience.

What Are The Best Special Occasions To Buy Nurse Mugs As Gifts?

There are several reasons or holidays when buying a nurse mug can be a thoughtful and appreciated gesture. Here are some of the best occasions:

International Nurses Day: This day celebrates the contributions and dedication of nurses worldwide. A nurse mug can be a fitting gift to show appreciation for their hard work and compassionate care.

National Nurses Week: This week-long celebration honors nurses and their vital role in healthcare. Gifting nurse mugs as gifts can be a meaningful way to recognize their efforts.

Graduation: If someone you know is graduating from nursing school or completing a nursing program, a nurse-themed coffee mug can make a practical and thoughtful gift to mark this significant milestone.

Birthdays: Nurses, like everyone else, celebrate birthdays too! A nurse coffee mug personalized with their name, initials, or a nursing-related design can make a wonderful birthday present.

Holidays: Any major holiday, such as Christmas, Hanukkah, or Thanksgiving, can be an opportunity to express appreciation for a nurse in your life with a coffee mug that reflects their profession and dedication.

Nurse Retirement: When a nurse retires after a long and rewarding career, a nurse coffee mug can be a sentimental gift, symbolizing their years of service and the joy of sipping coffee during well-deserved relaxation.

Thank You Gift: If a nurse has gone above and beyond to provide exceptional care or support during a difficult time, presenting them with a nurse coffee mug can be a heartfelt way to express gratitude.

Remember, while these occasions provide excellent and memorable opportunities to gift a nurse coffee mug, appreciation and recognition for nurses can be expressed at any time. The important thing is to acknowledge their hard work and show your gratitude for the difference they make in people’s lives.

Best Mugs For Nurse’s Advice

So what are the best nurse coffee mugs? The answer may vary from person to person, but we’ve tried to provide a variety of the best options for you to choose from based on reading thousands of reviews.

All you have to do is just click or tap the button to check the selection of colors and prices of the best nurse mugs. Thanks for stopping by!

Additional recommended reading:

Charge Nurse Role: What You Need To Know

Charge Nurse Role: What You Need To Know

Charge Nurse Role: What You Need To Know

One of the most important things to know about being a charge nurse is that effective communication and strong leadership skills are essential. As a charge RN, you will be responsible for coordinating the activities of the nursing staff, ensuring proper patient care, and addressing any issues or conflicts that arise.

The functionality of the nursing unit depends on having a charge nurse with the skills to lead. Great charge nurses are known for keeping the department organized and running efficiently while encouraging great teamwork and inspiring a team of nurses to perform at their best.

“The single biggest way to impact an organization is to focus on leadership development. There is almost no limit to the potential of an organization that recruits good people, raises them up as leaders and continually develops them.” -John Maxwell

What Is A Charge Nurse?

A charge nurse, also sometimes referred to as a charge RN, is a nurse who oversees an entire team of nurses in a particular hospital unit or department. They serve as a liaison between nurses, upper administration, nurse educators, and other hospital clinicians.

Charge RNs are needed to manage hospitals, residential care facilities, nursing homes, surgery centers, and outpatient units. Although they can give direct patient care- and often do if the unit is short-staffed – they mostly work peripherally to bedside nurses and within a more administrative role than medical professionals.

Hospitals and other healthcare facilities usually have several charge nurses who are responsible for various health services managers in different departments and specialties.

Charge Nurse Duties And Responsibilities

Some duties include the following:

  • Managing nurses
  • Supervising and assisting nursing staff when needed
  • Providing administrative support
  • Assigning nurses to patients
  • Creating nurse schedules
  • Managing the in and outflow of patients to a unit
  • Being flexible and responsive to nurses’ needs on the unit
  • Prioritize patient care needs, especially during urgent or emergent situations
  • Document nurse performance
  • Work with upper administration to address any hospital issues or issues with staff

Other ancillary charge RN roles might include:

  • Checking the crash carts daily in the unit
  • Counting medications in the Pyxis or other automated drug dispenser once a shift
  • Working with the facility’s patient placement
  • Attend a daily staff meeting with social workers, physical therapists, nurse practitioners, and doctors to make sure patients get what they need for discharge and ensure a timely discharge

“The greatest leader is not necessarily the one who does the greatest things. He is the one that gets the people to do the greatest things.” – Ronald Reagan

How To Become A Charge Nurse?

To become a charge RN, you must already have several years of nursing experience and a deep understanding of the workflow and population where you work. You need to master your nursing skills and, if possible, become as involved as possible with team-building activities in your workplace.

It is also imperative that you express your desire to be promoted to management and ask them precisely what you need to do to earn the position.  Each facility is different.

Note:  It is more challenging to start as a charge RN on a unit where a nurse has never worked before, even if they have many years of nursing practice under their belt. It helps to know many of the nurses already personally, as it helps to build trust as a leader. Knowing other ancillary medical professionals, such as respiratory therapists, social workers, case managers, nurse practitioners, and doctors on the unit, will also help you get started on the right foot.

Tips To Prepare For A Charge Nurse Role:

  • Become certified in your nursing specialty
  • Master your workflow as a nurse
  • Become an expert on nursing skills needed in your unit
  • Offer help to other nurses whenever you can
  • Become a preceptor for new nurse graduates on the unit
  • Express your desire to be promoted into a charge nurse role to administration
  • Take leadership classes, either online or through your facility if they have them
  • Join the Unit Practice Counsel UPC – if your unit has one
  • Offer to help in all team-building projects on your unit

The Difference Between A Charge Nurse And A Unit Manager

A unit manager is sometimes referred to as a unit director. And while both charge RNs and unit managers are leadership positions, they are still very different positions and require different levels of education.

A unit manager oversees the entire nursing unit, including all of the charge nurses. Unit managers also handle more of the business management of the unit than charge RNs do. Also, unit nurse managers typically work more closely with the upper hospital administration to keep the unit aligned with the goals of the entire organization.

Charge nurses must have an ADN or BSN to hold the position.  A unit manager often holds a master’s degree (MSN) or higher, usually with an emphasis on leadership and hospital management.

Additional recommended reading:  Travel Nursing 101:  The Pros, The Cons, And How To Get Started

What Is A Charge Nurse’s Salary?

Charge RNs often make a few dollars an hour more than floor nurses.  However, there are many other factors at play when it comes to earning potential.

The salary of a charge nurse can vary depending on several factors, including geographic location, years of experience, level of education, certifications, and the specific healthcare setting. In general, charge nurses earn a higher salary compared to regular staff nurses due to their additional responsibilities and leadership roles.

According to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median annual wage for registered nurses (which includes charge nurses) was $76,600 as of May 2021. However, it’s important to note that this figure encompasses all registered nurses across various specialties and positions.

Nurses in states with a higher cost of living, such as California or New York, usually make a higher hourly wage, while other lower cost of living states, such as North Dakota or Iowa, might make less than the median U.S. pay.

It’s best to consult reliable salary resources specific to your location and healthcare system to obtain more accurate and up-to-date information on charge nurse salaries. Additionally, factors such as overtime pay, shift differentials, and benefits can also impact the total compensation package for charge RNs.

Qualities Of A Great Charge Nurse

“The pessimist complains about the wind. The optimist expects it to change. The leader adjusts the sails.”  –

John Maxwell

There is no question that a charge nurse’s role is extremely challenging at times. But a great charge nurse needs to be able to see through the stress and inspire other registered nurses to rise above and perform at their best. Here are three qualities of a great charge nurse.

Resilience – When the work gets tough, great charge nurses get even tougher and push through.  Some days will seem impossible, but resilient leaders persevere.

Emotional Intelligence – The dictionary describes emotional intelligence as: “the capacity to be aware of, control, and express one’s emotions, and to handle interpersonal relationships judiciously and sympathetically.” Many great leaders say emotional intelligence is the key to both personal and professional success.

Decision-making capabilities – Charge nurses need to be able to make quick decisions. The hospital setting moves quickly, and patient safety depends on taking action fast, especially in an emergency.

Certifications To Be A Charge Nurse

To become a charge nurse, you must first be a registered nurse who has graduated from an accredited program. There are several ways to do this – including achieving an associate degree  (ADN), a 2-year degree, or a bachelor’s Degree In Nursing (BSN), which takes a minimum of four years to complete.

While many of the same topics taught at the ADN level are covered in a BSN, a four-year program will provide a deeper set of skills and education. The field of nursing is becoming more competitive and more employers require newly appointed RNs to hold.

There are no national or state certifications to become a charge nurse. However, many charge nurses are certified on the specialty floor where they work. In most cases, the charge nurse worked as an R.N. on the floor for several years and has a clear understanding of the clinical setting and how the unit functions.

Charge Nurse Career Outlook

According to the BLS, the nursing profession is expected to grow by 6% from 2021-2031, which is about as fast as average. That means that there will also be plenty of opportunities for nurses to take on charge roles.

Charge Nurse Frequently Asked Questions

What is the charge nurse’s role?

A charge RN is a registered nurse who takes on additional responsibilities and leadership roles within a healthcare setting, typically on a particular shift or unit. Their primary responsibilities include overseeing the nursing staff, coordinating patient care, and ensuring the smooth functioning of healthcare facilities in the unit.

What is the difference between a charge nurse and a regular nurse?

The main difference between a charge RN and a regular RN is the additional responsibilities and leadership role that a charge nurse assumes. While regular nurses focus primarily on direct patient care, charge nurses have supervisory responsibilities and coordinate the activities of the nursing staff.

Who is higher up than a charge nurse?

In the nursing hierarchy, a charge RN typically falls below a nurse manager or a nurse supervisor. Nurse managers or supervisors are responsible for overseeing multiple units or departments and have broader managerial responsibilities.

What power does a charge nurse have?

Charge nurses have the authority to assign patient care responsibilities to other nurses and healthcare professionals. They coordinate admissions, admissions and discharges,, and transfers, ensure proper documentation, address any conflicts or issues that arise during the shift, and serve as a resource for the nursing staff.

Is a charge nurse over an RN?

A charge nurse is an RN who takes on additional responsibilities and leadership roles. While a charge nurse is an RN, they have specific responsibilities related to overseeing the unit and coordinating patient care, which regular RNs may not have.

Is a charge nurse your boss?

A charge nurse may have some supervisory responsibilities over other nurses and healthcare professionals on the unit, but they are not typically considered the direct boss of the nursing staff. They work alongside nurse managers or supervisors who have broader administrative responsibilities and managerial roles.

How long does it take to be a charge nurse?

The timeline to become a charge RN can vary. Typically, it requires several years of experience as a registered nurse to develop the necessary skills, knowledge, and leadership abilities. Some charge nurse positions may also require additional education or certifications. The exact duration depends on an individual’s progression and professional development.

Is it hard to be a charge nurse?

Being a charge nurse can be challenging as it involves juggling various responsibilities, managing the nursing staff, coordinating patient care, and addressing any issues that arise. It requires strong leadership skills, effective communication, critical thinking, and the ability to multitask in a fast-paced environment. However, with experience, ongoing education, and support, many nurses successfully take on the role of a charge nurse.

Do charge nurses take patients?

Charge nurses may or may not take direct patient assignments, as it depends on the specific policies and needs of the healthcare facility. In some cases, charge nurses may have a reduced patient load to allow them to focus on their administrative and supervisory duties. However, in other situations, charge nurses may continue to provide direct patient care while also overseeing the unit.

Who gets to be a charge nurse?

The criteria for becoming a charge nurse can vary among healthcare facilities. Generally, charge nurses are experienced registered nurses who have demonstrated strong clinical skills, leadership abilities, and the ability to work well with a team. They may also receive additional training, clinical experience, or education related to management or leadership.

Is charge nurse a promotion?

Yes, becoming a charge nurse is often considered a promotion within the nursing profession. It represents an advancement in responsibilities and leadership roles compared to regular nursing positions.

What are the weaknesses of being a charge nurse?

While charge nurses have important responsibilities, they may face challenges such as balancing administrative tasks with patient care, managing conflicts or difficult situations among the staff, dealing with high levels of stress and responsibility, and working long hours or irregular shifts.

Nurse working on a unit taking notes

What Are The Most Important Things To Know About Being In A Charge Nursing Role?

The most important thing to know about this position is that it requires strong leadership skills and the ability to multitask effectively. As a charge RN, you will be responsible for overseeing a team of nurses and ensuring the smooth operation of the unit or department.

Here are some key points to consider:


As a charge RN, you need to provide guidance, support, and direction to your team. Strong leadership skills are essential for effectively delegating tasks, making decisions, and resolving conflicts.


Clear and effective communication is crucial in your role as a charge nurse. You’ll need to communicate with various healthcare professionals, patients, families, and your team. Being able to convey information clearly, listen actively, and provide feedback is essential.


The ability to stay organized is vital as a charge RN. You’ll be responsible for coordinating patient care, managing resources, and ensuring that tasks are completed efficiently. Prioritization and time management skills are essential.

Clinical Expertise

Charge nurses are expected to have a solid clinical foundation and expertise in their specialty area. This knowledge allows you to make informed decisions, provide guidance to your team, and respond appropriately to patient needs and emergencies.


You’ll face various challenges and unexpected situations. The ability to think critically, make quick decisions, and problem-solve effectively is essential. You should be able to remain calm under pressure and adapt to changing circumstances.

Teamwork and Collaboration

Building a positive and collaborative team environment is crucial for charge RNs. Foster open communication, encourage teamwork, and support your team members. Collaboration with other healthcare professionals is also important for coordinated patient care.

Continuous Learning

Healthcare is an ever-evolving field, and it’s important to stay updated with the latest evidence-based practices and advancements in nursing. Pursue opportunities for professional development, attend conferences, and stay informed about current research to enhance your knowledge and skills.

Remember that being a charge RN is a significant responsibility, and it’s important to maintain a balance between leadership and being a supportive team member. By focusing on these key aspects, you can excel in your role and positively impact patient outcomes and the overall functioning of the healthcare unit.


Taking on higher leadership positions in health care, such as charge nurse, can help you create a satisfying and long-term healthcare career, earn a higher salary, and open up more opportunities away from the bedside.

Best of luck in your nursing career!

Additional recommended reading:

Benefits of Per Diem Nursing (PRN Nurse)

Benefits of Per Diem Nursing (PRN Nurse)

What Does Per Diem Mean?

Per diem means “by the day” in Latin.

A per diem nurse is a nurse who is employed on a day-by-day or as-needed basis by a medical or healthcare facility, nursing home, outpatient clinic, or healthcare agency.

Per diem nursing refers to a type of nursing employment arrangement where nurses are hired to fill temporary staffing needs or to provide coverage for absences or shortages.

In per diem nursing, nurses are not employed full-time or part-time with a set schedule. Instead, they have the flexibility to choose the shifts they want to work based on their availability.

What is a PRN or Per Diem Nurse?

PRN is a Latin term for pro re nata, which translates in English to “as the situation demands.” 

“Per diem nursing” and “PRN nursing”  have essentially the same meaning and are often used interchangeably.

Whether your nursing job title is per diem nurse or PRN nurse, you only work when your institution has additional staffing needs that they cannot fill with their own “career” nursing staff.

The increasing demands of medical professionals in today’s healthcare environment – and the fact that patients are living longer (and are often sicker) than ever before – makes having the option to employ a per diem nurse even more essential.

Types of nurses that can work in per diem nursing include:

  • Registered nurse (RN)
  • Licensed vocational nurse (LVN) or licensed practical nurse (LPN)
  • Certified nursing assistant (CNA)
  • Advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs), such as nurse practitioners (NPs)

In addition, nurses can take per diem jobs in a variety of different facilities, such as:

  • Hospitals
  • Nurse staffing agency
  • Nursing homes
  • Outpatient surgery centers and clinics
  • Home health care

Some per diem nurses work back and forth between multiple institutions or as travel nurses!


About Per Diem Nursing

Many hospitals have their own per diem nursing staff. The fundamental responsibilities needed to be a per diem nurse are the same as career nurses. These nurses may be assigned to one particular unit in a hospital or can be resource nurses who can cover shifts in many different specialties within the hospital setting (as long as they are trained to do so).

Hospital staffing needs usually increase during holiday seasons or during times of high census in the hospital (such as during the COVID-19 pandemic).

In addition, there are nurse staffing agencies that arrange for nurses to work in hospitals that have additional staffing needs they can’t fill. These nurses work for “per diem nursing agencies” and may end up working multiple jobs in a variety of different facilities. Often, these nurses might work a few shifts at one hospital, and then a shift in another facility, all in one week.

Additional recommended reading 5 Non-Bedside Jobs You May Not Know About

Per Diem (PRN) Nurse vs. Full Time Nurse:  What Should I Choose?

Most nurses work full-time, at least for their first few years after graduating from nursing school. Novice nurses need to put the time in and develop their clinical and critical thinking skills.

It takes many years to build up nursing expertise at the bedside, so I would never recommend that a new grad nurse work per diem. If you are considering per diem work as a nursing avenue for your nursing career path, ensure you are experienced enough to manage the stress of working in many different environments.

As a former per diem nurse, I have found many benefits to working per diem nursing jobs that I would not have had if I was working as a “staff” or “career” nurse. If you are teetering on making a change into the per diem nursing career environment, these are the benefits of working as a per diem, or PRN, nurse.


Benefits of Being a Per Diem/PRN Nurse

#1. Higher Pay

Per diem nurses may earn higher pay rates compared to other full-time nurses part-time or part-time career nurses for several reasons:


Per diem nurses provide a valuable service by offering their availability on short notice or during high-demand periods. The flexibility they offer allows healthcare facilities to fill staffing gaps quickly, ensuring continuity of patient care – without making a permanent commitment to the facility.

Premium Pay Rates

Many healthcare facilities offer premium or differential pay rates for per diem nurses. This is because per diem nurses are not entitled to benefits like health insurance, paid time off, or retirement plans that are typically provided to full-time or part-time employees. The higher pay rate for per diem employees helps offset the lack of benefits and compensates for the additional flexibility required.

Specialized Skills or Experience

Per diem nurses often possess specialized skills or experience that make them particularly valuable to healthcare facilities. For example, they may have expertise in critical care, emergency medicine, or other specialized areas. In such cases, their higher pay rate reflects their advanced knowledge and the demand for their specific skills.

Short-Term Commitment

Since per diem nurses are not employed on a regular basis, the higher pay rate may serve as an incentive for them to take on temporary assignments. It compensates them for the uncertainty associated with their work schedule and provides an incentive for more nurses to prioritize per diem shift shifts over other potential opportunities.

NOTE: It’s important to note that while per diem nurses may earn higher hourly rates, they do not receive benefits or job security that full-time employees enjoy. Additionally, their income may vary based on the availability of shifts and the demand for their services, which can fluctuate over time.

#2. You Can Make Your Own Schedule

Per diem nurses have the advantage of being able to create their own schedules based on their availability and preferences. Those in need of a flexible schedule may want to consider becoming a per diem nurse. Here’s an overview of how per diem nurses can make their own schedules:

Per Diem Nurses Communicate Their Availability

Per diem nurses typically inform the healthcare facility or staffing agency about their availability to work. They may provide their availability on a weekly, monthly, or periodic basis. This allows the facility to know when the per diem nurse is willing and able to work.

Shift Selection

Based on the nurse’s communicated availability, the facility or staffing agency will present available shifts for the nurse to choose from. These shifts can vary in terms of timing, duration guaranteed hours, and clinical setting. Per diem nurses can review the available options and select the shifts that align with their preferences and availability.

Flexibility in Accepting Shifts

Per diem nurses have the freedom to accept or decline shifts based on their personal circumstances, preferences, or other commitments. They can choose to work as few or as many shifts as they desire, depending on their needs and availability. This flexibility is one of the primary benefits of being a per diem nurse.

Ongoing Schedule Adjustments

Per diem nurses can update their availability and adjust their schedules as needed. They may communicate changes in their availability due to personal commitments, vacations, or other factors. Similarly, they can request additional shifts or reduce their availability if necessary.

NOTE: It’s important to note that while per diem nurses have the freedom to create their schedules, the availability of shifts is subject to the staffing needs of the healthcare facility. The demand for per diem nurse shifts can fluctuate, and there may be periods of high or low availability based on factors such as patient census, seasonal variations, or unforeseen circumstances.

Also, per diem staff and nurses should remain proactive in maintaining regular communication with their facility or staffing agency to stay informed about available shifts and to ensure a smooth scheduling process.

#3. Per Diem Nurses Can Pick Up Seasonal work

Per diem nurses have the flexibility to pick up extra seasonal work if it aligns with their availability and preferences. Many healthcare facilities experience increased demand during certain seasons or holidays, such as flu season, summer vacations, or winter holidays.

Per diem nurses can take advantage of these opportunities to earn additional income or gain experience in different clinical settings too.

Additional recommended reading:  8 Things I Wish I Knew Before I Became A Nurse

#4. Per Diem/ PRN Nurses Can Often Decline Shifts

Unlike career nurses, who often have guaranteed hours and do not have complete control of their schedules, per diem nurses can choose to decline shifts if they don’t jive with their schedule.

This means that if you don’t want to work nights, holidays, or weekends, you usually don’t have to (or at least not as often).

#5. Per Diem Nurses Can Add a Shift at the Last Minute

One of the best benefits of a per diem nursing career is that PRN nurses can work between different hospitals at the same time. This often works well because if they end up getting canceled at one hospital, they can call the staffing office at their other hospital to see if they have any per diem nursing needs.

#6. Cancel a Shift at the Last Minute

Working parents understand the need for flexible scheduling. If your child (or yourself) becomes ill the day or two before a per diem work shift, then you have an opportunity to cancel yourself ahead of time. You don’t need to worry about whether or not you have enough paid vacation time or sick time saved up.

#7. Opportunity to Cross-Train in Different Specialties

Per diem nursing often offers additional learning and career growth opportunities at a healthcare facility because staffing needs require coverage in many different specialty areas.

For example, a per diem emergency room nurse, who also floats to ICU units, might also be able to cross-train for a PACU unit if they have staffing needs. Or a per diem pediatric ER nurse might get training to work in the adult ER if the need for a per diem nurse arises.

Another example is a per diem nurse who specializes in the NICU might be cross-trained for post-partum or antepartum units if they need additional nursing support.

Nurses who can be flexible and want mental stimulation may find that they have more opportunities than ever to work. When you have experience working in multiple facilities and several different nursing specialties, then you have a decreased chance of being canceled and not making any extra money for that day. Having experience in many different per diem nursing jobs can provide increased job stability and add valuable work experience to your resume.

#8. Per Diem Nursing Allows You to Add Vacation Time Into Your Schedule Without Taking Time Off

For per diem employees of nurses, there is no need to ask for paid vacation because it is possible to build vacation time right into your schedule. So go ahead and book that summer vacation!

For example, full-time per diem nurses often work three 12-hour shifts a week. You can schedule yourself to work on Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday one week, and then on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday of the next week. That leaves you with eight days off in between your shifts to hop on a plane for a week’s vacation.

Or just add in extra shifts early in the month and take the rest of the month off!

#9. Part-Time Per Diem Nursing

Many nurses who only want to work part-time appreciate the option to work in per diem nursing. Whether you have small children at home, want a better work-life balance, or have other side careers that you are pursuing, per diem nursing allows you to have that flexibility without altogether leaving the bedside, or your profession, behind.

As nurses get closer to retirement, some may choose to work a little less. If that is the case, then per diem nursing work is a great option. You can keep your foot in the nursing industry, keep your nursing skills and knowledge sharp, and continue to bring in some income while also having time to dedicate to the other passions in your life.

In conclusion

I hope this article helped you clarify whether or not being a per diem or PRN nurse is right for you. There are many factors to consider, but it is wonderful to work in a profession where this type of work environment is possible.

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Pros And Cons Of 12 Hour Shifts

Pros And Cons Of 12 Hour Shifts

For dedicated nurses who work long hours on the front lines of healthcare, the 12-hour nursing shift has become increasingly popular. While it may sound daunting, these extended shifts offer a range of benefits that make a significant impact on both nurses and patients.

In this article, we will explore the pros and cons of working 12-hour nursing shifts, highlighting their effects on work-life balance, patient care, and professional growth. Let’s dive in!

Nurse standing with her arms crossed

Pros of Working 12-Hour Nursing Shifts:

By understanding the advantages of these longer shifts, nurses may be able to make more informed decisions about their work schedules. Let’s explore the numerous benefits that 12-hour shifts bring to the table.

Longer Breaks and More Days Off

One of the notable advantages of 12-hour nursing shifts is the extended break periods. With longer breaks, nurses can recharge, refuel, and engage in self-care activities. Additionally, the compressed schedule often allows for more consecutive days off, providing valuable time for personal pursuits, family commitments, and leisure activities that can enhance work-life balance.

For example, throughout my career at the bedside, I appreciated 12-hour shifts as they allowed me to have four days off every week. This allowed me to spend more quality time with my family on my days off!

Who doesn’t want to work fewer days in a week?  When you work 12-hour shifts as a full-time nurse, you get to work three days a week instead of Five.  That also means that you have four days off every week instead of only two, like most other professions.  


Enhanced Continuity of Care

Working longer shifts promotes improved continuity of care for patients. Nurses who work on units where patients stay for an extended period have the opportunity to build stronger relationships with their patients, gaining deeper insights into their conditions, needs, and preferences. This continuity allows nurses to provide more personalized and holistic care, resulting in better patient outcomes.

Reduced Handoffs and Communication Errors

With fewer shift changes, there is a decrease in handoffs and communication errors between nurses. This streamlined workflow enhances patient safety by minimizing the chances of critical information being overlooked or miscommunicated. It also improves efficiency, as nurses can focus more on patient care rather than spending excessive time on shift handovers.

Deeper Collaboration and Team Bonding

Although it may seem counterintuitive, extended shifts may encourage stronger collaboration and team bonding among nurses. Spending more time together fosters a sense of camaraderie, trust, and shared responsibility. Nurses can support and rely on each other, resulting in a more cohesive and efficient healthcare team.

Better Work-Life Balance

Working fewer days a week provides nurses with a better work-life balance. The extended time off allows nursesto prioritize self-care, spend quality time with family and friends, and engage in activities that rejuvenate them mentally and physically. This balance may help to prevent burnout and increase overall job satisfaction.

(In addition, working as a per diem nurse has given me an even greater work-life balance. I could choose to work as little as one day a week or as many as four or five as long as the hospital has a need for nurses.)

Financial Advantages

For nurses who prefer longer shifts, 12-hour schedules can bring financial benefits. Working fewer days in a week means that nurses can take advantage of potential overtime opportunities, allowing them to earn additional income. 

Flexibility and Freedom

Working 12-hour nursing shifts often provides flexibility and freedom in scheduling. Many healthcare facilities offer various shift options, allowing nurses to select shifts that align with their personal preferences and commitments. This flexibility can be particularly valuable for nurses with childcare responsibilities, those pursuing further education, or those who simply prefer longer stretches of time off.

Working 12-hour shifts allowed me to get more creative with my work schedule. That factor has always been so important to me as a working mom. I wanted to be available when my kids needed me to be home from work. In addition, I often felt that I got to experience what it’s like to be a stay-at-home mom and have the ability to also work full-time.

Less Commuting to Work (Save Time & Gas!)

Working three days a week instead of a more traditional Monday through Friday schedule means that you spend significantly less time commuting to work. In addition, if some of those days fall on a weekend, then you can miss traffic completely! 

Personally, I don’t love working on the weekend because I prefer to be home with my family; however, I do appreciate how fast I can get to and from work.  That is something to consider when you live in a high-traffic city such as Los Angeles. 

You Can Take “Mini-Vacations” Without Using Vacation Time

When you have the option to have several days off in between workdays, it becomes possible to take mini-vacations without putting in a vacation request.  In fact, I have taken up to a week off at a time to go to Mexico without using any vacation days.  

When you consolidate your hours into longer periods of time per day, then you can take more days off in a row.  For example, if I am putting my schedule in for a two-week period, I can request a Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday for the first week and a Thursday, Friday, and Saturday for the second week.  That leaves me with eight days off in between!

Summary of the Pros of Working 12-Hour Nursing Shifts

From improved work-life balance and enhanced patient care to opportunities for professional growth and financial advantages, these longer shifts provide a supportive and fulfilling environment for nurses. While they may require endurance and adaptability, the rewards are well worth it. By embracing the positives of 12-hour shifts, nurses can thrive in their careers and make a significant difference in the lives of their patients.


Additional recommended reading:  12 Nurse Essentials I Can’t Live Without


pros and cons of 12 hour nursing shifts

There are pros and cons to working 12-hour nursing shifts that you may want to consider.

Cons Of Working 12-Hour Nursing Shifts:

While 12-hour nursing shifts offer certain advantages, it is important to acknowledge that they also present unique challenges. These extended work hours can impact nurses physically, emotionally, and socially. Here we will explore some of the cons associated with 12-hour shifts, shedding light on the potential difficulties nurses may face. 

Physical Fatigue and Exhaustion 

Extended shifts can lead to physical fatigue and exhaustion for nurses. Long hours of continuous work, often involving physically demanding tasks, can take a toll on the body. Prolonged periods of standing or lifting patients can lead to muscle strain, joint pain, and increased risk of workplace injuries.

Many nurses work 12-hour shifts with minimal breaks. We are lifting and pulling patients, often spending the majority of our day on our feet, managing stressful and sometimes critical situations while doing everything we can to get through the shift! 

Increased Risk of Burnout

The demanding nature of 12-hour shifts can contribute to a higher risk of burnout among nurses. The combination of physical exhaustion, emotional stress, and the need to consistently provide high-quality care can leave nurses feeling emotionally drained and overwhelmed. This chronic stress can impact job satisfaction, mental well-being, and overall work performance.

A University of Pennsylvania study on hospital nurses found that the longer the shift, the higher the levels of burnout and patient dissatisfaction.  The researchers discovered that nurses working shifts that were ten hours or longer were up to two and a half times more likely than nurses working shorter shifts to experience burnout and job dissatisfaction.

One reason may be that longer shifts give nurses less time in a day to care for themselves.  I have found it challenging to do any self-care on days I worked 12-hour shifts because nearly every waking hour is spent caring for patients.  Furthermore, the study found that nurse burnout associated with longer shifts increased the chances of the nurse wanting to leave the job.   

Disrupted Work-Life Balance

Working longer shifts can disrupt work-life balance, especially for nurses with family or personal commitments. The extended hours spent at work may limit quality time spent with loved ones or engaging in activities outside of work. This imbalance can lead to feelings of guilt, strain relationships, and hinder self-care practices.

Impact on Sleep Patterns 

Extended shifts can disrupt sleep patterns, as nurses may struggle to find adequate time for restorative sleep. The irregular and often overnight schedules can interfere with the body’s natural circadian rhythm, leading to difficulties falling asleep, staying asleep, or obtaining sufficient rest. This can result in fatigue, decreased alertness, and impaired cognitive function.

Challenges in Patient Safety

Prolonged work hours can potentially compromise patient safety. Fatigue and decreased alertness due to long shifts increase the likelihood of errors in medication administration, documentation, or patient assessments. Nurses need to be vigilant in recognizing the impact of fatigue on their performance and take necessary precautions to ensure optimal patient care.

If You Have Kids, You Probably Won’t See Them On The Days You Work

As a nurse and mom, one of the worst parts of working 12-hour shifts is that I don’t get to see my children at all on the days that I work.  They are still asleep when I leave for work at 6 o’clock in the morning and they are already in bed by the time I get home at 8:30 PM.  Even worse, when I work back-to-back shifts, I may not see them at all for 24 to 36 hours at a time.  I could as easily have been out-of-town as far as they are concerned.  Nursing is a good career for moms, but this is still something you may want to consider.

Summary of the Con of Working 12-Hour Nursing Shifts

While 12-hour nursing shifts have their advantages, it is essential to recognize and address the potential cons they bring. Healthcare organizations and nurses themselves should prioritize strategies to mitigate the challenges associated with extended shifts, such as implementing fatigue management programs, promoting self-care practices, and fostering a supportive work environment.

By understanding and addressing these cons, nurses can navigate the complexities of 12-hour shifts while maintaining their well-being and providing the best possible care to their patients.


My Personal Take on Working 12-Hour Shifts

Working a 12-hour nursing shift makes for a very long workday.  But I’ve always seen it as the price I must pay for getting to spend more days at home. So, the benefits of the 12-hour shift far outweigh the cons for me.  Admittedly though, I really do focus on the benefits of working 12-hour shifts as much as I can. I must remind myself to stay positive.  

I have always been grateful to have work flexibility that allows me to spend more uninterrupted days off with my family than I would have with a standard 9 to 5 schedule. When I think about it in that way, I realize I am lucky to get to have the best of both worlds.

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The Best Nurse Pocket Organizers For Nursing Shifts

The Best Nurse Pocket Organizers For Nursing Shifts

*This post contains affiliate links.

How Do You Organize Your Pockets During Nursing Shifts?

Are you tired of constantly fumbling through your pockets, searching for essential tools and personal items during critical moments? Do you wish there was a better way to keep your necessities organized and easily accessible while providing top-notch care to your patients?

If you are like many busy nurses, you may be stuffing your pockets – which isn’t very organized at all. Not to mention, it looks very unprofessional for a nurse to be shuffling through their pockets for one of many nurse tools and accessories they need throughout the shift.  (I’ve been that nurse too, believe me!)

Every nurse knows that in the fast-paced world of healthcare, every second counts. Nurse pocket organizers and “fanny packs” help you save valuable time and energy. Imagine having all your essential items neatly organized within arm’s reach, ready to assist you at a moment’s notice. With multiple compartments and pockets, you can efficiently store pens, notepads, scissors, penlights, gloves, hand sanitizer, and other crucial tools. No more wasting precious minutes rummaging through pockets or searching for misplaced items.

Designed specifically for healthcare professionals, the organizers on this list ensure items are easily accessible while maintaining a professional appearance. Equipped with compartments for everything from pens and bandages to phones and masks, nurse pocket organizers and medical hip packs will revolutionize your work experience.

Elevate your performance, boost your productivity, and enhance the quality of care you provide!

How We Choose These Nurse Pocket Organizers

We’ve read through a ton of user reviews and star ratings to develop a list that makes your life easier and provides information to help you make a good decision. Choosing the right nurse pocket organizer for you requires some extra considerations to ensure it meets the unique needs of a nurse.

When considering a quality nurse pocket organizer, there are several features that can enhance its functionality and usability. Here are some of the best features to look for:

Multiple compartments and pockets: A good nurse pocket organizer should have various compartments and pockets of different sizes to accommodate a range of items. This allows for efficient organization and easy access to essentials like pens, notepads, scissors, and other tools.

Durable construction: Opt for a pocket organizer made from high-quality and durable materials such as nylon or polyester. This ensures that it can withstand the rigors of daily use in a healthcare setting, including frequent washing and exposure to potentially harsh chemicals.

Secure closures: Look for a pocket organizer that features secure closures, such as zippers or Velcro, to keep your items safely in place. This prevents any accidental spills or loss of important tools while you move and work.

Adjustable and comfortable straps: If you opt for a fanny pack-style organizer, ensure that it has adjustable straps for a customizable and comfortable fit around your waist. This allows you to position it at the most convenient and ergonomic location for easy access.

Water-resistant or easy to clean: Given the nature of the healthcare environment, it’s beneficial to choose a pocket organizer that is water-resistant or easy to clean. This enables you to wipe away any spills or contamination quickly, maintaining a hygienic and professional appearance

Remember, the best features in a nurse pocket organizer may vary based on individual preferences and specific needs. Consider your workflow, the items you typically carry, and the demands of your workplace to find the organizer that best suits your requirements.

From simple options to bigger pocket organizers, there is a best nurse pocket organizer here for you!

Nurse Fanny Pack with Tape Holder


Why We Love It

The best part about this bag is its combination of practicality and durability!

Product Features

  • Water-resistant & durable: Made from lightweight yet tear-resistant material.
  • Three removable straps:  You can wear it as a belt bag, crossbody bag, or shoulder bag, or clip it to your pants with the carabiner.
  • Keep Items at Your Fingertips: Stay organized with multiple pockets designed to hold pens, markers, thermometer, penlights, and more.
  • Personality & practical: The front ID window with a clear cover allows quick access without removing your ID card. The back pocket with a side opening provides convenient storage and easy access to your items.
  • Great Gift Idea: Perfect for various medical professionals such as CNAs, Nurse Practitioners, Physician Assistants, and more!

First Lifesaver Nurse Fanny Pack with Multi-Compartment and Tape Holder


Why We Love It

This professional medical fanny pack offers convenient accessibility, ample storage, and durability to assist nurses and medical professionals in their daily work, allowing them to be better prepared and organized while providing care to patients.

Product Features

  • Designed for accessible convenience: It has multiple pockets and access points for easy organization and can be worn as a waist pack, crossbody bag, shoulder bag, or belt pouch.
  • Provides ample storage:  Its deep and flexible pocket system allows you to securely store items such as stethoscopes, pens, markers, scissors, tape, thermometers, medical gloves, wipes, and more.
  • Be better prepared for emergencies: It has 11 quick-access pockets.
  • Long, adjustable waist strap: The fanny pack comes with a long waist strap that can be adjusted from 25″ to 47″.
  • Heavy-duty, water-resistant nylon: Built to withstand the demands of a busy healthcare environment, and has strong YKK zippers, ensuring its reliability and longevity.

Multi-Compartment Nurse Fanny Pack for Women and Men 


Why We Love It

Designed to keep everything you need easily accessible. Created by a pharmacist with input from nurses.

Product Features

  • Premium materials:  This medical fanny pack nurse organizer is waterproof, multi-compartmented, and features extra strength Velcro closures and an easy quick-release heavy-duty buckle.
  • Provides ample space: Have quick access to scissors, bandages, pens, and gadgets. The lightweight and durable design, along with a stethoscope holder, allows for easy organization and portability.
  • Easy to clean: Has a washable canvas material ensuring easy cleaning. It also comes with a detachable belt to fit any waist size.

ADC 216 Pocket Pal II Medical Instrument Organizer/Pocket Protector


Why We Love It

Highly Recommended: Reviewers consider the ADC 216 Pocket Pal II a “must-have” accessory. They even suggest getting two because of its practicality and usefulness

Product Features

  • Fashionable and functional: ADC’s classic 216 Pocket Pal II is a uniform accessory that seamlessly combines fashion and function.
  • Durable construction: Made from washable 420D white nylon and sewn with nylon thread, ensuring longevity and easy maintenance.
  • Convenient closure: The organizer features hook-and-loop snap closures in coordinating colors, providing a secure and easy-to-use closure system.
  • Multiple pockets: It offers five slide-in pockets and one covered pocket in the front, along with one full-width slide-in pocket in the rear. This allows for efficient organization and easy access to essential items..

Nurse Pocket Organizer Frequently Asked Questions

What would you find in a nurse’s pocket?

In a nurse’s pocket, you might typically find items such as pens, notepads, scissors, a penlight, a small notebook or cheat sheet, gloves, hand sanitizer, and other small medical tools or personal items that they may need during their shift.

Where do nurses put their stuff?

Nurses typically put their stuff in the pockets of their scrubs or in a pocket organizer.

What size is a scrub pocket?

The size of a scrub pocket can vary depending on the brand and style of scrubs. However, scrub pockets are typically designed to be spacious enough to hold small medical instruments and personal items like pens, notepads, and a small phone.

Can you tuck in scrubs with pockets?

Yes, you can tuck in scrubs with pockets. Tucking in scrubs is a matter of personal preference and dress code policy. Some hospitals or healthcare facilities may require scrubs to be tucked in for a more professional appearance, while others may allow them to be worn untucked. If the scrubs have pockets, tucking them in shouldn’t affect the functionality of the pockets.

How baggy should scrubs be?

The fit of scrubs can vary depending on personal preference and workplace policies. Generally, scrubs should be loose enough to allow freedom of movement and provide comfort during long shifts. However, they should not be excessively baggy to avoid any safety hazards or interference with work.

What is the sleeve pocket for on scrubs?

The sleeve pocket on scrubs is typically designed to hold items like pens, penlights, or small medical instruments that nurses may need to have readily accessible. It allows nurses to conveniently store and access these tools without having to search through their other pockets.


Best Nurse Pocket Organizers Advice

So what’s the best pocket organizer for nurses? The answer may vary from person to person, but we’ve tried to provide a variety of the best options for you to choose from based on reading through a wide range of products.

All you have to do is just tap the button to check the price of the nurse pocket organizers. Thanks for stopping by!

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Why I Love Working As An ER Nurse

Why I Love Working As An ER Nurse

*This post may contain affiliate links.

As a resource nurse who has worked in many specialties and units throughout the hospital setting, I have discovered that I am an ER nurse at heart.

Working in the ER is an adrenaline packed experience that requires a team of medical professionals to come together for amazing results. Through traumas, codes and septic patients we form strong bonds – after all it takes more than just one nurse to save a life!

Here are the reasons why I love being an ER nurse:  

Camaraderie in the Emergency Department

What makes the ER truly exceptional are those moments when everyone comes together in a show of camaraderie – from physicians and nurses to pharmacists and techs – joining forces under pressing circumstances that demand quick thinking and action. This teamwork is the backbone that brings life-saving medical treatment, often just in time!

I have found that when I worked on med-surg floor units, nurses are typically assigned to the same patients for an entire day without much, if any, overlap with other nurses.  I have also felt lonely on med surg units because I miss the camaraderie of working with other nurses.

The ER Gives Many Nurses Excellent IV Start Skills

Before becoming an ER nurse, my IV start skills were mediocre.  The skill of starting IV’s quickly and correctly is so important in the ER – it often determines how fast a patient can receive life-saving medication or treatments. Over the years, I have had to start so many IV’s that my skills have greatly improved.

With the vast number of medical emergencies coming into the ER each day, it’s no wonder why nurses who work there are some of the best at starting intravenous lines. Having so many frequent opportunities to get IV access has meant a sharp increase in skill for me and other emergency room nurses – even when dealing with hard-to-stick veins.

In emergencies, ER nurses need to be able to gain access fast for testing, various medications, pain and nausea relief, IV hydration, and antibiotic therapy, among other things.  Many nurses I work with have been in the ER for a decade or longer, and their IV skills are unbelievable.

In addition, several experienced ER nurses have been trained to use ultrasound techniques for those particularly challenging cases. So if you want valuable IV start skills quickly, then work where opportunity knocks most often – the ER! It’s the perfect place to hone your IV start skills and ensure every patient gets the care they need.

Reasons Why ER Nursing Is The Best

Diverse Patient Populations in the ER

From the tiniest newborns to centenarians, life in an ER is definitely never dull. Caring for a wide-ranging patient population provides unique opportunities and challenges with every new case. As an emergency room nurse, you’ll have plenty of chances to learn about all sorts of illnesses, injuries, and trauma – from organ transplants to autoimmune diseases – making your workdays excitingly unpredictable yet incredibly rewarding.

There is rarely a dull moment, and always something new to learn in the the ER enviornment.

Organized Chaos in the ER

It is never boring or tedious in the ER, or at least not for long!  The emergency room is a fine-tuned machine, with each nurse component working semi-gracefully around one another. It might look like craziness from the outside, but the madness always has a method. I often struggle with the tediousness of tasks when working on a med surg unit.  It is usually jam-packed but very task-based.  The to-do lists can get a little ridiculous.

Intellectual Stimulation as a Healthcare Provider in the ER

I am a closet science geek. And I love the cerebral stimulation I get as an emergency room nurse. I have had the opportunity to see more disease states, complex injuries, and unusual diagnoses than I ever could have imagined even existed. It would not be an exaggeration to say I learn ten new things every day at work. To top it off, I am surrounded by some of the most intelligent people I have ever met. Many of my co-workers have the same drive to help people as I do. They motivate me to keep learning.

The ER Helps Me Maintain My Sense Of Humor.

Sometimes things just get so odd that I can’t help but laugh.

There are days when I see people come into the ER saying that they are dying but end up with a diagnosis of constipation.

Once, I had a college student come in because he had a 99 degree temperature. I had to explain to him that he didn’t have a fever and he was sent home.

The emergency room is also a very emotional place. Patients never want to be there and usually don’t understand, for example, why they have to wait in the hallway an hour or even much longer until we know their blood test results, or the medical team decides on a plan for them. They get upset and tired of waiting.

Sadly, sometimes they take out their frustrations on the people working the hardest to get them the medical treatment they need: the nurses. I  have had so many “I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried” experiences in the emergency room to last me a lifetime.

But that’s one of the reasons I love being an ER nurse versus other parts of the hospital. It can get weird, but I’m always learning. And I’m so grateful for the opportunity to keep learning.

Emergency Room Nurse Frequently Asked Questions

Why do nurses like being an ER nurse?

There can be several reasons why someone enjoys being an ER nurse. Some common reasons include the fast-paced nature of the emergency department, the opportunity to make a difference in people’s lives during critical moments, the variety of cases encountered, the ability to work in a dynamic team environment, and the satisfaction of providing immediate care to patients in need.

Why is being an ER nurse rewarding?

Being an ER nurse can be rewarding for several reasons. ER nurses often have the chance to save lives, alleviate suffering, and provide critical care to patients during their most vulnerable moments. The ability to make a positive impact on patients’ lives and the gratitude expressed by patients and their families can be deeply rewarding.

Is being an ER nurse worth it?

The worthiness of being an ER nurse is subjective and depends on individual preferences and values. While the profession can be challenging due to the high-stress environment, long hours, and exposure to traumatic situations, many ER nurses find fulfillment in their work, the camaraderie with colleagues, the opportunities for professional growth, and the ability to help others during times of crisis.

What is the personality of an ER nurse?

The personality traits commonly associated with successful ER nurses include adaptability, resilience, quick thinking, effective communication skills, compassion, emotional stability, the ability to work well under pressure, and a strong desire to help others. However, it’s important to remember that individuals can possess a wide range of personalities and still excel as an ER nurse.

What are the struggles of an ER nurse?

Some common struggles faced by ER nurses include dealing with high levels of stress, long and unpredictable shifts, emotional and physical exhaustion, witnessing traumatic events, balancing work-life commitments, managing a heavy workload, and making quick decisions under pressure. Additionally, ER nurses may encounter challenging patient interactions, difficult family dynamics, and ethical dilemmas.

What is the hardest thing a nurse has to do?

The “hardest” aspect of nursing can vary depending on personal experiences and perspectives. Some nurses may find it difficult to witness the suffering or loss of patients, while others may struggle with the emotional toll of the job. Additionally, ethical dilemmas, managing complex medical cases, and dealing with difficult patients or family members can also be challenging.

How long does it take to feel comfortable as an ER nurse?

The time it takes to feel comfortable as an ER nurse can vary from person to person. It generally depends on an individual’s prior experience, the level of support and training provided, and the ability to adapt to the fast-paced and unpredictable environment. It may take several months to a couple of years for a nurse to gain confidence and feel fully comfortable in their role.

Why do ER nurses take so long?

The duration of an ER nurse’s work can be influenced by various factors. Emergency departments typically prioritize patients based on the severity of their conditions. This means that patients with life-threatening emergencies are seen first, while those with less severe conditions may have to wait longer. Additionally, the complex nature of emergency cases, unexpected surges in patient volume, limited resources, and administrative tasks can contribute to longer wait times.

What is the most stressful nursing department?

The perceived level of stress in nursing departments can vary among individuals. However, emergency departments (EDs) are often considered one of the most stressful areas in nursing due to the fast-paced environment, high patient acuity, constant decision-making, the need for quick interventions, exposure to trauma, and the pressure to provide immediate care in life-threatening situations.

Thanks for reading!

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