Also known as recovery room nurses, post-anesthesia care unit or PACU nurses care for patients who are recovering from anesthesia after surgery. They monitor post-operation vital signs, assess levels of consciousness, and carefully observe patients for any side effects from anesthesia.

PACU Nurse Job Description Template

We are seeking a dedicated PACU nurse to carefully monitor the condition of patients who are waking up from post-operative anesthesia. You will be monitoring levels of consciousness, measuring vital signs, and treating post-operative side effects of anesthesia medication such as pain or nausea.

To ensure success as a PACU nurse, you should possess experience in caring for post-anesthesia patients and the ability to function in a high-pressure environment. An accomplished PACU nurse will be someone whose expertise results in patients who feel reassured while safely recovering from anesthesia.

PACU Nurse Responsibilities:

  • Monitoring post-operative patients’ levels of consciousness during recovery from anesthesia.
  • Measuring and recording patients’ vital signs.
  • Closely observing patients for signs of side effects of anethesia medication.
  • Treating pain, nausea, and other post-operative symptoms of anesthesia.
  • Updating charts, patient files, and medical records.
  • Collaborating with the medical team on post-operative patient care and facilitating timely specialized interventions.
  • Providing comfort and reassurance to distressed post-operative patients and concerned family members.
  • Educating patients and their families on post-surgery care, as well as answering questions.

PACU Nurse Requirements:

  • An associate’s or bachelor of science degree in nursing (BSN).
  • Registered Nurse (RN) certification.
  • Certified post-anesthesia nurse (CPAN) preferred.
  • At least two years’ of experience as a nurse in a post-anesthesia care unit.
  • Proficiency in electronic hospital management systems, such as eHospital and Mediexcel.
  • Extensive experience in measuring and interpreting vital signs and levels of consciousness.
  • Advanced knowledge of best practices in patient care.
  • Exceptional interpersonal, communication, and collaboration skills.
  • Superb organizational and time management abilities.
  • Availability to work rotational shifts, including nights, weekends, and public holidays.