What is a Typical Day Like for a Pediatric RN?

pediatric rnA pediatric RN is a nurse who works with children of all ages. Pediatric nurses work with children in hospitals, doctor’s offices and clinics. In order to become a pediatric nurse, one must first obtain an undergraduate degree from a nursing school. Then, she can find a job as a pediatric nurse; most hospitals have training programs for new college graduates.

What Does a Pediatric RN Do?

The exact job description of a Pediatric RN varies slightly depending on where he is employed, but many of the tasks are fairly uniform. Pediatric nurses evaluate children to determine if their behavior, growth, and any sign or symptoms they have are normal for children their age or if there may be signs of a problem or illness. Pediatric nurses look for signs or symptoms of abuse and illness. They determine the severity of their findings and act appropriately, making sure the children receive the help they need.

Pediatric nurses serve as an advocate for the children they care for. They gather the information they need to help their patients. This information is often not only about the patient, but also the patient’s family and community, if that information could be helpful as well. Pediatric nurses create a relationship of trust with their patients and keep all information confidential.

Pediatric nurses help children who are in pain or who are suffering from illnesses. They do this by assessing the patient’s condition and responding accordingly. They may administer tests, give medicine, and suggest other activities or exercises that can help children feel better and become healthy again. When dealing with children who are dying, pediatric nurses offer supportive care and a shoulder to lean on during rough times.

What are the Daily Tasks of a Pediatric RN?

A Pediatric RN has several responsibilities throughout the day as she tends to her patients. A pediatric RN in a hospital may check in on her patients to ask how they are feeling or to chat about their day. A pediatric RN at a doctor’s office may weigh and measure a child to see how she has grown since her last doctor’s office visit. A pediatric nurse may ask a child in a hospital about his level of pain and administer the appropriate amount of medication to ease his pain. He may also give a child a physical exam to check for any signs or symptoms that the child has been abused. A pediatric nurse may discuss symptoms with families to try to find a cause and a solution. He may discuss a possible treatment plan with a child’s family and answer any of their questions.

Pediatric nursing is a very demanding but very rewarding career. Pediatric RNs have the heartbreak of seeing sick patients, but they also have the joy of helping those sick patients on their way to recovery. For an in-depth research study about pediatric nurses in particular, be sure to check out What Do Pediatric Nurses Do? Results of the Role Delineation Study in Canada and the United States.