find nursing schools

Select a degree level

Particularly in the field


  • Matching School Ad
    Kaplan University - KHE

    MS in Nursing

  • Matching School Ad
    Medical Careers Institute

    RN to BSN

  • Matching School Ad
    Fortis Institute

    Medical Assistant

Emergency Nurse

Emergency nursing is a field of nursing requiring nurses to work swiftly, quickly and very efficiently. The nature of the job, as suggested by the nature of work in an emergency department, is multi-faceted and fast-paced.


These nurses are trained recognize and treat the life-threatening ailments quickly and without hesitation. Skills needed by an emergency nurse are also wide ranging from general to specialized because they may be getting patients suffering from a very generic problem such as a bad cold to a life threatening case such as a heart attack patient. Also, the patient may be a newborn or an elderly person, meaning that these nurses can face conditions related to obstetrics, pediatrics, geriatrics, and even psychology.


Often, a patient will see an emergency nurse before he/she sees a physician in an emergency department. This places a great onus of responsibility on emergency nurses, from accurate physical examination, recognition of life-threatening illnesses or injury to ordering tests and medication according to the emergency department’s advanced treatment guidelines.


Their work environment is not restricted to the emergency department of hospitals alone. From emergency rooms to ambulances, helicopter to sports arenas; anywhere a person encounters a medical emergency could be a work setting for these nurses.

• How to become an Emergency Nurse

Becoming a registered nurse (RN) is the first step to become an emergency nurse. For this, a nurse has to spend 2 to 4 years completing an associate or bachelor degree followed by clearing a licensure exam for registered nurses.


To become a Certified Emergency Nurse (CEN), the nurse has to pass a computer-administered exam conducted by the Board of Certification for Emergency Nursing (BCEN). BCEN is a part of the Emergency Nurses’ Association. Although, experience is not a mandatory requirement for taking this exam, but the BCEN urges the RNs to acquire at least two years of experience in emergency nursing before sitting for the exam. The certification is valid for either four years, after which the nurse has to take the exam again, or completing 100 continuing education units in the specialty.

• Job and Salary Prospects

The field of medicine will never run out of emergency situations, and therefore, the demand for emergency nurses is likely to keep growing. The nature of the job can be quite demanding, however, though some may look at it as a positive aspect of the job.


Emergency Nurses earn a median salary of about $50,000 to $60,000 per annum. This varies depending on the hiring facility, education and years of experience of the nurse. Job and salary prospects are better for more experienced nurses with years of experience in emergency nursing.

Matching School Ads