A day in the life of an nurse in a Doctor office

  1. 0
    I was wondering what a nurse does in a typical day at a doctors office, i am working in a hospital and am thinking about applying at a doctors office. Do you deal with patients or are you more in the office part? Mostly when i go to the Doctor, i have contacts with MA's, so I was wondering what RN's do! any insight would be appreciated! thanks!

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  2. 17 Comments...

  3. 1
    Good question. I only see the receptionists, the NP/MD, and MAís. When I called the office recently they put me through to a nurse and I thought Ďah, they do have themí, and pictured her chained to a desk in the back.
    PrettyRN2Be likes this.
  4. 1
    I work for the Army in a "doctor's office" (we call it an ambulatory clinic, anywho...) as an RN and I can tell you that this role is multifaceted. Here, I triage (in person or on the phone) patients who are unable to get appts with our MDs/PA and offer self-care advice, assist with procedures, prepare and administer meds/vaccines, conduct ob classes, maintain patient care "flow" throughout the office... and much, much, more...

    I can say on the "outside" in the civilian world, I've seen RNs work in offices who take calls through their nurse advice line; do an initial assessment of the patient (vitals, chief complaint for visit, etc) similiar to what you've seen MAs do, I'm sure; case management for things like repeat labwork to monitor diabetes, cholesterol, etc. (of course under the doctor, working with standing orders or protocol).

    I'm going to venture a guess that the role of an RN in a doctor's office is largely based on the type of care provided at that office. In my case, we touch on almost everything (ortho, gyn, internal med, peds, geriatrics, on and on) but I also realize that's not a very accurate picture of the civilian world. If you're truly interested, apply. Worst case, you get an interview and decide..."you know what, this isn't for me." And at least you'll know. At the interview, you may have an opportunity to shadow for the day and see what kind of care is provided. Just a thought. I hope this helped!
    Last edit by LaeDeesNP on Jul 25, '08
    MassED likes this.
  5. 12
    I have worked as an LPN in a family practice physician's office for two years. There are three family practice Drs and six nurses. In the clinic I am affiliated with MA's, CMA's, LPN's and RN's are all paid the same wage and have the same duties.

    I am responsible for taking the patient to the exam room, vitals, history, and a brief "assessment". If I am working with one of the male physicians I go into the exam room when he does the breast exam and pap/pelvic exam. I administer vaccinations, therapeutic and prophylactic injections (allergy shots, B12, neupogen, neulasta.....).

    I regularly perform phlebotomy, ECG's, peak flows, nebulizer treatments, set up sterile fields, assist in office surgeries - colposcopies, vasectomies, lesion removals, flex sigs, etc.

    In between the "patient" work, I code for procedures, notify patients of labwork, test results, etc. I also answer patient calls for triage, prescription refills, complaints, etc. Then there is the phone calls for prior authorizations for testing, physical therapy, occupational therapy, and medications to handle. I can sit on hold to medicare for an hour before getting a person; private insurances are a little speedier.

    I call prescription orders to the pharmacies and of course lots of charting!

    I also have 5 other nurses in a small work area. We are all female....need I say more? There is also the physician's themselves - you see them at their best and at their worst....

    Hopefully this will give you an overall idea of the duties of the office nurse.
    JillyDod, Manda2426, Teacup Pom, and 9 others like this.
  6. 2
    Quote from s8ntollie
    I have worked as an LPN in a family practice physician's office for two years. There are three family practice Drs and six nurses. In the clinic I am affiliated with MA's, CMA's, LPN's and RN's are all paid the same wage and have the same duties.
    Everyone is paid the same wage? Wow.
    canoehead and pagandeva2000 like this.
  7. 1
    Thats what I was thinking. No offense, but an RN and an MA make the same? An RN and an LPN make the same? Holy cow!!!
    pagandeva2000 likes this.
  8. 0
    Either those are some very low paid RN's or some really high paid MA's lol...I think if the later is the case, I'd sure like to be that MA!
  9. 0
    thanks everyone!
  10. 1
    In my pediatrician's office, the only RN's on staff work telephone triage. They have an office of their own, and spend all day doing telephone triage, answering questions about general pediatric issues, and advising patients when to be seen, what kind of home remedies to try, etc. Those who see patients, and give immunizations, etc, are either MA's or CNA's.

    Personally, it would drive me crazy to have gotten all of that training and not use my clinical skills, but the women who work in my office absoutely LOVE their job and really enjoy it, so it must just depend on personality type.
    JourneyRN likes this.
  11. 3
    I am an LPN and I work as primary nurse for a general surgeon. My day consists of:

    1. Rooming patients-VS, meds, allergies
    2. Paperwork for surgeries, procedures, and tests and providing instruction and patient teaching for same.
    3. Set up sterile trays and glove and assist the surgeon with small procedures in the office.
    4. Set up charts for the following day, obtaining path, x-ray and lab results for upcoming consults.
    5. phone calls
    6. Try and find time for the projects Manager likes to give us.
    7. clean and stock rooms and lots of other little odds and ends.

    Very little Rx refills and prior authorizations in my particular department.

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