Clinical Nurse Specialist Career

Job Description: Direct nursing staff in the provision of patient care in a clinical practice setting, such as a hospital, hospice, clinic, or home. Ensure adherence to established clinical policies, protocols, regulations, and standards.


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Clinical Nurse Specialist Career

What Clinical Nurse Specialists do:

  • Collaborate with other health care professionals and service providers to ensure optimal patient care.
  • Coordinate or conduct educational programs or in-service training sessions on topics, such as clinical procedures.
  • Develop and maintain departmental policies, procedures, objectives, or patient care standards, based on evidence-based practice guidelines or expert opinion.
  • Develop nursing service philosophies, goals, policies, priorities, or procedures.
  • Develop or assist others in development of care and treatment plans.
  • Direct or supervise nursing care staff in the provision of patient therapy.
  • Evaluate the quality and effectiveness of nursing practice or organizational systems.
  • Identify training needs or conduct training sessions for nursing students or medical staff.
  • Make clinical recommendations to physicians, other health care providers, insurance companies, patients, or health care organizations.
  • Monitor or evaluate medical conditions of patients in collaboration with other health care professionals.
  • Observe, interview, and assess patients to identify care needs.
  • Participate in clinical research projects, such as by reviewing protocols, reviewing patient records, monitoring compliance, and meeting with regulatory authorities.
  • Plan, evaluate, or modify treatment programs, based on information gathered by observing and interviewing patients or by analyzing patient records.
  • Provide coaching and mentoring to other caregivers to help facilitate their professional growth and development.
  • Read current literature, talk with colleagues, or participate in professional organizations or conferences to keep abreast of developments in nursing.
  • Chair nursing departments or committees.
  • Design evaluation programs regarding the quality and effectiveness of nursing practice or organizational systems.
  • Develop, implement, or evaluate standards of nursing practice in specialty area, such as pediatrics, acute care, and geriatrics.
  • Lead nursing department implementation of, or compliance with, regulatory or accreditation processes.
  • Maintain departmental policies, procedures, objectives, or infection control standards.
  • Provide consultation to other health care providers in areas such as patient discharge, patient care, or clinical procedures.
  • Teach patient education programs that include information required to make informed health care and treatment decisions.
  • Present clients with information required to make informed health care and treatment decisions.
  • Design patient education programs that include information required to make informed health care and treatment decisions.
  • Instruct nursing staff in areas such as the assessment, development, implementation, and evaluation of disability, illness, management, technology, or resources.
  • Provide direct care by performing comprehensive health assessments, developing differential diagnoses, conducting specialized tests, or prescribing medications or treatments.
  • Provide specialized direct and indirect care to inpatients and outpatients within a designated specialty, such as obstetrics, neurology, oncology, or neonatal care.
  • Prepare reports to document patients' care activities.
  • Perform discharge planning for patients.
  • Write nursing orders.

What work activities are most important?

Importance Activities

Getting Information - Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.

Assisting and Caring for Others - Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.

Making Decisions and Solving Problems - Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.

Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships - Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.

Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge - Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.

Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates - Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.

Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings - Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.

Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events - Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.

Coaching and Developing Others - Identifying the developmental needs of others and coaching, mentoring, or otherwise helping others to improve their knowledge or skills.

Training and Teaching Others - Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.

Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work - Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.

Documenting/Recording Information - Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.

Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others - Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.

Developing and Building Teams - Encouraging and building mutual trust, respect, and cooperation among team members.

Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards - Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.

Analyzing Data or Information - Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.

Processing Information - Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.

Provide Consultation and Advice to Others - Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups on technical, systems-, or process-related topics.

Interacting With Computers - Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.

Thinking Creatively - Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.

Guiding, Directing, and Motivating Subordinates - Providing guidance and direction to subordinates, including setting performance standards and monitoring performance.

Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others - Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.

Developing Objectives and Strategies - Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them.

Coordinating the Work and Activities of Others - Getting members of a group to work together to accomplish tasks.

Communicating with Persons Outside Organization - Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.

Performing for or Working Directly with the Public - Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.

Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People - Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.

Selling or Influencing Others - Convincing others to buy merchandise/goods or to otherwise change their minds or actions.

Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information - Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.

Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material - Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.

Scheduling Work and Activities - Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.

Monitoring and Controlling Resources - Monitoring and controlling resources and overseeing the spending of money.

Performing Administrative Activities - Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork.

Handling and Moving Objects - Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

Performing General Physical Activities - Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.

Holland Code Chart for a Clinical Nurse Specialist