Dialysis RNs Find PRN Shifts with the Help of Nursa™
Learn More About Working in the Dialysis Nursing Specialty
The dialysis nursing specialty is a sub-specialization in the field of Nephrology which is the study and treatment of the kidneys.
Dialysis nurses are highly specialized and serve an integral role in providing care and treatment for people who are diagnosed with kidney disease and need the life-sustaining treatment of dialysis to survive.
Patients need one of three types of treatment:
- Chronic – chronic patients require treatments two or three times weekly, often nurses who treat chronic patients will administer and care for several patients in a shift.
- Acute – acute patients require immediate treatment, because of their acute status, nurses who treat acute patients will usually care for fewer patients in a shift, perhaps only two.
- Peritoneal – peritoneal patients are typically more stable than those of the other two categories.
Where Does a Dialysis Nurse Work?
The work environment of a dialysis nurse has a surprising amount of variation. Dialysis can be administered in the home setting of a patient, or in a hospital. Some medical centers or independent clinics also employ dialysis nurses.
According to Nursa™, pay rates for Dialysis nurses vary by state but are among some of the highest-paid PRN jobs.
What Does a Dialysis Nurse Do?
A dialysis nurse is responsible for attaching the dialysis equipment to the patient, and assessing and monitoring the patient’s vitals before during and after treatment. Moreover, dialysis nurses will document notes and progress of the patient and educate their patients and families about their diagnosis and self-care.
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Recommended Certifications for Dialysis Registered Nurses
Certification in Basic Life Support (BLS) is generally required for most PRN jobs. The Nephrology Nursing Certification Commission offers certifications for nurses in the specialty. They offer the CDN (Certified Dialysis Nurse) and CNN (Certified Nephrology Nurse) for registered nurses, the CD-LPN and CD-LVN for licensed practical nurses and licensed vocational nurses and other certifications for dialysis technicians with a high school diploma or GED.
Some of these certifications require hours of experience. While not all hospitals and dialysis clinics will require certifications, they certainly serve as evidence to your dedication to the career and your patients.
Characteristics of a Successful Dialysis Nurse
Perhaps above all, a successful dialysis nurse will have keen attention to detail. The treatment of dialysis is necessary and a small mistake could have devastating effects. Dialysis nurses have frequent and routine contact with their patients over a long period of time allowing for trust and rapport to build. Therefore compassion and emotional resilience are valuable qualities.