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Neuroscience is a specialty in the medical profession which deals specifically with disorders, conditions and injuries to the brain and the nervous system. Anyone who has some form of disorder or injury to the brain requires specialized treatment including how they are handled emotionally, moved physically and how the wounds are treated as well as the type of medication that is used. In order to maintain quality healthcare to those who suffer from these ailments, not only do they require a specialized physician, but they also require a specialized neuroscience nurse as well. The neuroscience nurse generally has two key functions to the job, providing excellent patient care and assisting the doctor in all aspects of the patients’ treatment plan.
Education and Certification
The education required to be considered for an entry level position as a neuroscience nurse; you must have at the minimum a Bachelors of Science in nursing. When considering colleges for the Bachelors degree program, be sure to check out some of the top online universities who are now adding nursing programs to their distance learning curriculum. This degree will take about four years to complete, although it is well worth the time since most specialty programs will not accept a nurse who holds only an Associates degree. After you have completed your online Bachelors degree program, you may begin working in the neuroscience field, however; you must still go back to college to earn at least a certificate in neuroscience. If you choose, you may also go through the two year graduate program that will give you your online Masters degree in nursing with a minor concentration in neuroscience. Either one of these programs will give you the title of certified neuroscience nurse, qualifying you to work independently for the doctor or hospital without requiring supervision from a certified nurse.
The typical job functions of the nurse include both patient care as well as assisting the doctor. Most neuroscience jobs that focus more on patient care typically are located in a hospital setting where patient care is the main purpose. Here, you will administer medications to the patient, either by mouth or IV, move the patient if they cannot move themselves and provide wound care in the event that they have had surgery in the afflicted area. On the other hand, when you work in a clinical setting or office, your main function will be to assist the doctor. This assistance can be in the form of taking vitals and providing triage care for new patients up to assisting the doctor in surgical procedures. The neuroscience specialty nurse may draw blood for testing, take patients to radiology tests such as CAT scans, MRI’s and X-Rays. The nurse will keep the doctor informed of any test results as they arrive and the doctor may ask the nurse to consult with them on the appropriate treatment plan that will work the best for the patient, giving them the best chance at a full recovery. In addition, this nurse will also schedule any follow-up examinations for most of the patients to ensure they are recovering properly from their illness or injury.