Theatre & Perioperative / Scrub Nurse jobs

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About Theatre and perioperative nurse jobs in Australia

Find theatre and perioperative nursing jobs, careers and vacancies in Australia. Search from locum, permanent part-time and casual jobs.

Purpose and Mission

Perioperative nurses specialize in taking care of patients prior, during and after surgery or other medical interventions. The perioperative nursing specialty includes the job titles of pre-operative patient assessment and education nurse, circulating nurse, theatre nurse, anaesthetic nurse, instrument nurse, perioperative nurse surgical assistant, post-anaesthetic recovery nurse or just recovery nurse.

Reports To

Perioperative nurses work in hospitals or clinics, and typically report to a nursing supervisor. Depending on their role, some perioperative nurses may even report to department heads.

Supervisory Responsibilities

Although most perioperative nurse roles do not involve direct supervisory responsibility over others, there are some exceptions, especially relating to training of new perioperative nurses. Some perioperative nurses eventually move up into management or administrative roles.


Perioperative nurses are fully-qualified registered nurses. All RNs must have a current Nursing Registration with the AHPRA (Australian Health Practitioners Agency).

In most cases, at least some previous experience as a registered nurse is required to become a perioperative or theatre nurse. Depending on the facility, some additional formal training may be required to qualify to work as a perioperative nurse.

Responsibilities of a Perioperative Nurse

The responsibilities of a perioperative nurse vary based on the job specialty, but typically include at least the following:

  • Communicating effectively with patients and their families, and all members of the surgical team to guarantee best practices that lead to optimal patient outcomes.
  • Having an in-depth knowledge of infection control principles and follow all departmental and hospital policies relating to infection control.
  • Maintaining awareness and full compliance with the legal and ethical considerations of perioperative nursing.
  • Completing all documentation as required to comply with all ACORN, Ministry of Health and local governmental regulations and policies.
  • Always maintaining accountability for all actions when providing care to patients in the perioperative environment.
  • Acting as an advisor and advocate for the patient while they are at the hospital, and working to ensure the privacy, dignity and confidentiality required by law.
  • Regularly participating in personal and professional development (as required by regulation or law) to maintain continuing competency in current clinical procedures.
  • Assisting in the training and supervision of new or less experienced theatre nurses.
  • Making an effort to offer culturally-appropriate, patient-focused care to optimize outcomes.
  • Developing an in-depth understanding of the roles and responsibilities involved in each perioperative area, so that you are eventually qualified to serve in several or all perioperative nursing roles.

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