Purpose and Mission
The idea behind rehabilitation nursing is to assist individuals with disabilities or chronic illness to reach and maintain their maximum functioning. A rehabilitation nurse works with clients in adapting to a new lifestyle, while providing a therapeutic environment for the long-term development of both the client and their family.
A rehab nurse designs and implements a variety of treatment strategies based on nursing best practices related to self-care and to promote physical, psychosocial, and emotional health. Rehab nurses work in both inpatient and outpatient settings and in acute or subacute rehabilitation facilities.
Rehabilitation nurses are generally employed at hospitals or rehab clinics. They typically report to a nursing supervisor or other administrator. In some cases, rehab nursing staff may be directly supervised by the on-duty physicians.
Supervisory responsibilities vary greatly for rehab nurses. Senior rehab nurses may oversee less experienced nurses, and may also have a role in training and evaluation. Some rehab nurses eventually move up into management roles.
Rehabilitation nurses are required to be registered nurses (bachelor’s degree). RNs must also have a current Nursing Registration with the AHPRA (Australian Health Practitioners Agency) to work as a nurse.
Responsibilities of a Rehabilitation Nurse
The professional responsibilities of a rehab nurse typically include: