Are you looking to become an A&E nurse? In this guide, we outline what such a role entails, the kinds of experience and skills you’ll need, how to go about apply for an A&E job, what training and certifications you’ll need, and how much a Band 5 A&E nurse can expect to earn. Alternatively, find out more about other nursing career pathways.
What is a Band 5 A&E Nurse?
A band 5 A&E nurse is a specialised, registered nurse practitioner who works within an A&E department. A&E nurses will usually have at least 6 to 12 months experience in an NHS or private hospital, be qualified as an RGN, and be registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC).
As these nurses are often the first person they’ll see when admitted to an emergency department, the role is can be very high pressure. A&E nurses will need to initially take a patient’s vital signs – e.g. temperature and blood pressure – and care for them throughout their stay in the A&E department.
A&E departments are very fast-paced, and there’s no such thing as a typical day. A&E nurses will be treating anything from major trauma to minor illnesses.
A&E Nurse Job Description
While specific duties and responsibilities for A&E nurses will vary, they generally consist of:
- NMC registration
- Experience of working within an A&E or ICU department
- Understanding triage
- Ability to quickly and accurately make assessments about incoming patients – identifying the problem, documenting medical history, checking for any allergies, checking for vital signs, etc.
- Time management skills
- Ability to comply with NHS protocols, procedures and safety policies
- Clinical references
CV Writing and Interviews for A&E Nurses
Many A&E nursing adverts will ask you to complete an application form. However, it is still useful to have a full CV – this will allow you to refer to it when completing online applications, as well as usually being requested by nurse staffing agencies.
The key points to remember when writing your nursing CV is to keep everything succinct; ensure that it is clear, logical, well organised, relevant to the job you’re applying for and doesn’t contain any silly mistakes (like spelling errors). For A&E nurse CVs, you’ll want to emphasise the relevant critical care experience you have. When outlining your A&E experience, focus on the key skills that you have learnt, such as triage care, rapid assessment of many health conditions, taking blood samples and administering medications. For more information, the Royal College of Nursing offer some really great additional resources for CV writing.
In an A&E nurse interview, you’ll need to be able to explain what qualifies you for the advertised position – in short, how your experiences fulfill the key duties outlined in the job description. For first time roles, you’ll need to be able to explain why you want to work in A&E, what the most important skills you need are, and how you go about managing your workload in high pressure environments. For more experienced roles, you’ll need to give clear examples of when you have gone the extra mile to care for patients, as well as how you keep up with the latest nursing developments in A&E.
Remember to take any additional documentation – such as your NMC registration or additional training certificates – as well as your CV.
A&E Nurse Training & Certifications
To become a nurse, you will need to have studied a nursing degree. This could be a three-year undergraduate nursing degree, or a two-year postgraduate diploma after you’ve completed your first degree. Full-time nursing degrees are split into four branches – adult, child, mental health, and learning disabilities. A&E nurses will usually study a degree related to adult nursing.
After completing your degree, you’ll also need to register with the NMC. To become an A&E nurse specifically, you’ll be looking to apply to jobs within A&E departments. After gaining practical experience, you can also undertake a large range of further training.
How Much Does an A&E Nurse Earn?
Annual salaries for band 5 nurses – including A&E nurses – range between £21,909 to £28,462, dependent upon experience.
Ready to take the next step in your nursing career? Find out more about the variety of band 5 A&E nurse roles available from Mimosa Staffing.