What Is an Operating Room Supervisor?

Operating room supervisors are registered nurses who ensure that a hospital operating room is properly maintained and well staffed. Keep reading to learn more about the job description and educational requirement for these nursing professionals. Schools offering Nursing degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Duties and Responsibilities of an Operating Room Supervisor

Operating room supervisors are registered nurses (RNs) who usually have one or more years of work experience in a hospital operating room. If you take a position as an operating room supervisor, you may be responsible for scheduling scrub nurses and other support staff to ensure that a surgical procedure can be performed efficiently. Operating room supervisors also prepare the necessary surgical equipment and make sure the operating room is clean and sterile.

Additionally, it may be up to you to train nursing staff or students on proper operating room procedures. Other responsibilities can include passing surgical instruments to surgeons, maintaining patients' charts, or administering basic postoperative care.

Important Facts About This Occupation

Median Salary (2014) $65,950 (for all registered nurses)
Job Outlook (2012-2022) 19% growth (for all registered nurses)
Key Skills Emotional stability, compassion, organizational, and critical-thinking skills
Similar Occupations Surgical Technologist, Physician Assistant, Licensed Practical Nurse, Diagnostic Medical Sonographer

Source: United States Bureau of Labor Statistics

Training Requirements

Aspiring operating room supervisors must first complete the training necessary to become RNs. While both nursing associate's and bachelor's degree programs are available, employers may prefer applicants with a four-year degree. Both program levels include courses in anatomy and physiology, human development, pharmacology, and nursing leadership. You can also take classes to explore the different nursing fields, such as psychiatric and mental health nursing, pediatric nursing, adult health nursing, and surgical nursing. Clinical practicums round out program requirements.

Continuing Education

Continuing education certificate programs or courses in perioperative nursing are also available. These programs may be open to practicing nurses or students who are completing their nursing degree programs. Course lectures and lab requirements often cover such topics as operating room sterilization, infection control, and surgical techniques. You can also study patient care procedures to be performed before, during, and after surgery.

Licensing

To work as an RN, you'll need to apply for a license from your state board of nursing, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov). This process usually requires you to have completed a state-approved nursing program. You'll also need a passing score on the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN).

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  • The George Washington University

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