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do you need experience to be a clinical research nurse?


really interested in research nursing! have been an RN since 2008 and have worked in 2 ambulatory surgery centers and now in the main OR at a hospital. how can i obtain a research nursing job? please help! any advice is appreciated!!!

research nurses--how are your jobs? what is a day like for you on the job?

Rob72, ASN, RN

Specializes in Infectious Disease, Neuro, Research.

Hi, Jenni,

Days are probably similar to AmbSurg, in that there are periods of intense activity, followed by slower periods. LOOOOOOOTTTTTTs of paperwork. Although, that can vary, depending on whether the place that hires you is looking for more clinical, admin, or a combination of the two. I work at a university, and RNs in some departments are paid very well to come in 3 days/week and see possibly 12 patients during the week; myself, I do the admin work, and patient care, so during start-up or close-out, things are really busy.

Be sure to ask your prospective manager/Principal Investigator what their training philosophy is; I know one on campus who believes it best to overload new hires, "because you can always cut back, but you can't speed up lazy...":rolleyes: Most of that sort are out of the field, but there are still a few.

When evaluating a job description, look at whether it is asking for more clinical or admin ability, and tweek your resume accordingly. If you did scheduling and follow-up calls with Amb, play it up for the admin role. For clinical, emphasize the most acute management and educational needs of your population.

Universities are generally (though not always) more stable employers, but may be slightly lower in compensation. Private companies may offer better pay, but may entail more travel, and may lay off staff when projects slow. You can actually look in the yellow pages, under "research", to see about private agencies. YMMV, obviously. If you're in Oklahoma, LMK.