Last Updated on August 12, 2023 by Oluwajuwon Alvina
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Nurse researchers work in hospitals, medical clinics and research laboratories to conduct research at a nursing level. They create and design their own studies and seek out and analyze data within those studies before reporting and sometimes publishing results. This is a highly specific category of nursing with various additional training in research methodology and tools used to perform research. The data collected can be used to save the lives of patients and make medical professionals’ lives easier on the job.
There are many different types of research nurses in Australia. In this article, we will discuss the roles of a clinical research nurse and a community-based clinical research nurse.
Clinical Research Nurse
The clinical research nurse is responsible for ensuring that all patients involved in a clinical trial are given proper care and follow-up. The clinical research nurse may work at a hospital or clinic and may be involved with many different types of studies including oncology, cardiology, pediatrics, women’s health, and more.
Community-Based Clinical Research Nurse
A community-based clinical research nurse is responsible for recruiting participants for specific studies that take place within communities rather than hospitals or clinics. These nurses must also ensure that they follow all ethical guidelines set forth by their organization and make sure that participants understand what they are signing up for when joining a study.
What Does a Research Nurse Do?
A research nurse studies various aspects of the healthcare industry with the ultimate goal of improving patient outcomes. Nurse researchers have specialized knowledge of informatics, scientific research and data collection and analysis, in addition to their standard nursing training and RN license. Nurse researchers often design their own studies, secure funding, implement their research and collect and analyze their findings. They may also assist in the recruitment of study participants and provide direct patient care for participants while conducting their research. Once a research project has been completed, nurse researchers report their findings to other nurses, doctors and medical researchers through written articles, research reports and/or industry speaking opportunities.
The exact duties of a research nurse will typically depend on her employer and role. Some research nurses may be responsible for studying diseases, while others may help create and improve new medications and other treatments.
Research nurses that study diseases and illnesses will often perform a great deal of research, both by studying previous findings and observing patients. They may be required to examine medical journals, for instance, as well as observe, study, and care for patients suffering from a particular disease.
Other research nurses may organize, oversee, or assist in clinical trials, often involving new medications or treatment methods. These nurses are often responsible for locating and assessing suitable clinical test subject. to do so, they will often examine patients’ medical histories as well as their physical health. Based on the information that they gather, they will then make a decision as to which patients are the best candidates for certain clinical trials.
During clinical trials, research nurse will administer medications or perform other treatment procedures,. During this process, research nurses must closely monitor each patient’s progress. This includes documenting side effects, drug interactions, and the overall efficiency of the medication.
Aside from caring for patients, documenting and recording information during clinical trials is the most important responsibility that a research nurse has. The information and data gathered during the research must be compiled into reports and handed over to senior researchers or specialists.
What Is a Research Nurse?
Pharmaceutical and medical research is one major reason why we have advanced so much in the field of medicine within the last century. Research conducted in these areas has helped produce many of the major medications and cures we have today. Without this type of research, many more patients would die from even the mildest illnesses.
Scientists, physicians, specialists, nurses, and other medical professionals are the driving force behind medical research today. Without them, we would not be where we are today.
As a research nurse, you will be at the forefront of new medical discoveries, and help develop breakthrough cures and medical treatments. The work that you do during your career can help some patients live longer or enjoy a better quality of life. You may be responsible for studying diseases and disorders, as well as developing new treatment plans. You will also help test new treatments and medications that could possibly change the way a disease or disorder is perceived.
The field of medical research can be very rewarding and fulfilling. However, you should also be ready to face a great deal of stress and frustration.
First of all, not everyone perceives this type of research as a good thing. Be prepared to face some opposition from certain groups of people. Depending on your employer, you may also find that the work can be rather unsteady in this area. For example, you may find yourself searching for a new job once a research project has ended or funding runs out.
Good research nurses must be very dedicated to their work and ready to take on everything that the profession throws their way. If you’re looking to pursue a research nursing career, you should have an excellent understanding of the research process as well as the specialty area that you’re studying.
Excellent communication skills are also a must. You must be able to effectively communicate with scientists, physicians, researchers, patients, and corporate executives.
Where Do Research Nurses Work?
If you want to work in the medical field, but you don’t want to deal with the stress of being an actual doctor, research nursing might be your calling.
Qualified research nurses have the option to work in a number of different settings. Possible employers include research organizations, universities, pharmaceutical companies, teaching hospitals, and government agencies. Research nurses can expect to earn between $50k-$90k per year depending on their experience and location.
Research nurses work with doctors and other medical staff members on developing new treatments for diseases or improving existing ones. This involves collecting data from patients who are suffering from specific ailments and analyzing it in order to produce findings that will help doctors determine what type of treatment would be most effective.
Research nurses also help doctors develop new drugs by observing how people respond to different medications or medical treatments so that they can be improved upon if needed before going into production phase (which is when they’re sold commercially). In addition to this aspect of their job description, research nurses must also keep track of all patient information including medical history; which means they must be extremely detail oriented when doing so (this skill comes in handy later on down road).
What Are the Education Requirements for Research Nurses?
1. Earn your Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree
The first step to becoming a nurse researcher is earning your BSN, or Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree. A BSN program will take about three to four years to complete unless you’ve already earned your associate’s degree in nursing (ADN). Students who’ve already earned their ADN can enroll in an RN-BSN program which can be completed in as little as 20 months.
If you are a licensed vocational nurse with an associates degree in vocational nursing (ASVN), you can also earn your BSN degree through an advanced placement option (LVN to BSN). This accelerated nursing program allows you to skip the first year (three semesters) of the BSN program.
2. Pass the NCLEX-RN exam
Once you’ve earned your BSN, you’ll have to pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to earn your nursing license. With the NCLEX, you’ll be certified to enter the workforce as a registered nurse (RN).
3. Earn a master’s or doctoral degree
Earning a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) or doctorate degree from an accredited institution is required for becoming a nurse researcher. An MSN degree is the most common graduate degree earned by nurse researchers. You may also obtain your Ph.D. from an accredited institution. Depending on the type of research, some nurse researcher positions may require a Ph.D.. MSN degrees usually take about 18 – 24 months to complete, while doctorate degrees typically require 2-3 years of full-time education.
4. Gain experience working in clinical research
In order to be eligible for a nurse researcher certification exam, you’ll have to gain experience working as an RN in clinical research. The Society for Clinical Research Associates (SOCRA) requires two years of practice as a full-time registered nurse conducting clinical research to be eligible for their exam.
The Association of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP) also requires a requisite number of hours of professional experience working as a nurse researcher prior to sitting for many of their exams.
5. Pass the Nurse Researcher Certification exam
Upon receiving your Master’s or Doctorate degree, and completed your eligibility requirements, you may be required to earn a research certification for the position you wish to obtain. The Society for Clinical Research Associates (SOCRA) offers the Certified Clinical Research certification (CCRP).
The Association of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP) offers several certifications in clinical research as well.
The eligibility requirements for each certification varies by exam. It’s crucial that you determine which certification is best for the position you are applying for and the career path you’d like to take.
Nurse Researcher Salary
What Is the Job Outlook for Nurse Researchers?
Unfortunately, the Bureau of Labor Statistics does not report any specific data on the job outlook of nurse researchers. However, it does indicate that the overall employment of medical scientists is projected to grow six percent (6%) by 2029. This is higher than the average growth of all occupations (4%).
APRNs will be increasingly utilized in team-based models of care. They will also be needed to care for the large, aging baby-boom population.
Nurse Researcher Career
Are You Ready to Start Your Career as a Nurse Researcher?
Although the educational requirements may be extensive, the boost in salary and job outlook make up for lost time.
Nurse researchers have the unique opportunity to improve our healthcare system and patient outcomes. The job is perfect for anyone who feels passionate about using scientific research to change the world. The work they do has the potential to affect millions of lives.
If you feel ready to begin your journey as a nurse researcher, you can start by earning your BSN degree at Provo College. Click here to learn more about our BSN program.
While this blog may occasionally contain information that relates to Provo College’s programs or courses, the majority of information provided within this blog is for general informational purposes only and is not intended to represent the specific details of any educational offerings or opinions of Provo
The majority of nurse researchers have an advanced nursing degree, usually an MSN and occasionally a PhD in Nursing. In addition to earning an RN license, research nurses need to obtain specialized training in informatics, data collection, scientific research and research equipment as well as experience writing grant proposals, research reports and scholarly articles. Earning a PhD is optional for most positions as a research nurse, but might be required to conduct certain types of research.
Are Any Certifications or Credentials Needed?
Aside from a higher nursing degree, such as an MSN or PhD in Nursing, and an active RN license, additional certifications are often not required for work as a research nurse. However, some nurse researcher positions prefer candidates who have earned the Certified Clinical Research Professional (CCRP) certification offered by the Society for Clinical Research Associates. In order to be eligible for this certification, candidates must have a minimum of two years’ experience working in clinical research. The Association of Clinical Research Professionals also offers several certifications in clinical research, including the Clinical Research Associate Certification, the Clinical Research Coordinator Certification and the Association of Clinical Research Professionals – Certified Professional Credential. These certifications have varying eligibility requirements but generally include a number of hours of professional experience in clinical research and an active RN license.\
What Are the Roles and Duties of a Research Nurse?
- Design and implement research studies
- Observe patient care of treatment or procedures, and collect and analyze data, including managing databases
- Report findings of research, which may include presenting findings at industry conferences, meetings and other speaking engagements
- Write grant applications to secure funding for studies
- Write articles and research reports in nursing or medical professional journals or other publications
- Assist in the recruitment of participants for studies and provide direct patient care for participants
Becoming a Research Nurse
Don’t expect to become a research nurse overnight. Instead, expect to undergo years of training and accumulate years of experience.
The first step toward becoming a research nurse is to obtain the proper education. You can start with a bachelor’s degree in nursing, although many employers prefer that their research nurses have master’s degrees or even doctoral degrees in their chosen specialty. During your schooling, classes in research and statistics are a must, and are courses in your chosen area of expertise.
The Association of Clinical Research Professionals offer two different certifications for research nurses. You can choose to become a Certified Clinical Research Associate or a Certified Clinical Research Coordinator. To be eligible to take the certification examinations, you must be an experienced registered nurse with thousands of hours of clinical research experience.
If you’re like me, you’ve probably heard that nursing is one of the most rewarding careers out there. But if you’re also like me, you may have been thinking that it’s not your thing.
Well, let me assure you: If you think you’re not cut out for nursing, then I want to give you something to think about.
Nursing is a great career path for people who are compassionate and empathetic—and that’s just about everyone! You don’t have to be a sensitive florist or baker; if you have a lot of empathy for people and their needs, then nursing might be right for you.
And don’t worry about the “medical” part of it—we’ll teach that stuff in school! All we need from you is an open mind and willingness to learn new things (which comes naturally with being young and curious). This is an incredible opportunity—don’t miss it!