Nurses are a key part of the staff at military hospitals and clinics. Registered nurses direct nursing teams and give
patients individual care to help them recover from illness or injury.
What They Do
Registered nurses in the military perform some or all of the following duties:
- Help physicians treat patients
- Start IVs and give injections of pain killers, antibiotics, and other medicines as prescribed by physicians
- Change bandages and dressings
- Assist physicians during surgery
- Provide life support treatment for patients needing emergency care
- Provide care for mental health patients
- Keep records of patients’ condition
- Supervise practical nurses, nurse aides, and other support personnel
Helpful attributes include:
- Ability to express ideas clearly and concisely
- Desire to help others
- Self-confidence and the ability to remain calm under pressure
Job training consists of classroom instruction.
Training length varies depending on specialty. Course content typically
- Practices and principles of military nursing
- Care of emotionally disturbed patients
- Health care for children
- Nursing techniques
- Anesthesia, respiratory therapy, and cardiopulmonary resuscitation
Registered nurses work in hospitals and clinics. Some work in sick bays aboard ships or in mobile field hospitals.
Others work in airplanes that transfer patients to medical centers.
Civilian registered nurses work in hospitals, clinics, and private medical facilities.
They also work for public health
agencies, nursing homes, and rehabilitation centers. Civilian registered nurses perform duties similar to those
performed in the military.
They often specialize and may be known as public health nurses, nurse practitioners, or
general duty nurses.