Graduates of nursing courses are widely recognized as an essential part of the healthcare system. When most of us think of a hospital, the first professionals who spring to mind are typically doctors and nurses. Hospital employees with nursing unit clerk training, on the other hand, aren’t quite as likely to feature in our imaginings.
Nursing unit clerks, however, play an extremely crucial role in the medical process and some might argue, are the unsung heroes of the hospital world. Here are some of the key skills professionals with a unit clerk diploma put into practice every day.
Frontline Communication Skills
A nursing unit clerk is most likely the first person a patient or family member sees when they enter a hospital or clinic. This is because unit clerks generally sit behind the front desk, freeing up nurses in the unit to deal directly with patients who have already been admitted.
This means that they communicate directly with patients and family members who are often distraught or in pain, as well as doctors and nurses who are typically rushed. Unit clerks need excellent communication skills in order to quickly understand and convey information in a compassionate and organized manner.
In order to effectively communicate in a medical setting, nursing unit clerks need to be able to clearly understand all the information they are presented with. Sometimes this information comes in written form, which means the unit clerk must quickly (and accurately) decode the infamously incomprehensible handwriting of various physicians and nurses.
Unit clerks can also decode medical jargon, abbreviations and symbols, and understand technical terms. This requires an understanding of the basics of anatomy and physiology. They also need to be well-versed in the various diagnostic and imaging technologies medical professionals use, as well as the preparation patients go through for x-rays and other scans.
A nursing unit clerk is a highly organized person. In the event of a crisis, they are responsible for coordinating the efforts of the medical staff and use of equipment in order to bring about a timely and efficient resolution.
During every-day routine, a unit clerk’s organizational ability is still key. They are responsible for the efficient cataloguing and storage of thousands of documents: medical records, inventory orders, prescriptions and other pieces of official information a hospital or clinic needs to function efficiently.
The effective flow of information in the form of phone calls, emails and other messages is also an important responsibility of the nursing unit clerk. As the medical field (along with most businesses and public institutions) becomes more computer-based, a well-trained unit clerk will also be proficient in the latest office software.
Do you think you have the skills needed to succeed as a nursing unit clerk?