JOB SUMMARY:  The Registered Nurse working in the Operating Room may function as Circulating Nurse, Scrub Nurse, or Registered Nurse First Assistant. Assignment to position is made according to training and experience. The Circulating Nurse receives the patient and directs the activities of the room while being attentive to the surgeon, anesthesia personnel and scrub nurse. She/he functions as the patients’ advocate during the procedure and discharges the patient to post-op nursing staff. The Scrub Nurse prepares all necessary instruments and supplies needed by the surgeon and performs at the surgical table by handing instruments, sutures, etc. to the physicians as they are needed. The Registered Nurse First Assistant functions as the surgeon’s assistant working directly under his/her supervision throughout the procedures.


A.   Responsible to:  Operating Room Supervisor.

B.   Workers supervised:  None.

C.   Interrelationships:  Maintains open communication with co-workers, physicians, and patients.


A.   Education:  Graduate of an accredited School of Nursing. Currently registered by the West Virginia Board of Examiners for Registered Nurses.  Registered Nurse First Assistant has completed all requirements, successfully passed the First Assistant exam and completes all requirements necessary for recertification every five(5) years.

B.   Training & Experience: Previous operating room experience preferred. On-the-job training provided. Maintains current CPR card.

C.   Job Knowledge:  Demonstrates competency as appropriate in patient care assessment for each patient population area served: Neonatal, Pediatric, Adolescent, Adult, and Geriatric.

  • Knowledge of growth and development
  • Understanding of the patient’s needs and scope of treatment.
  • Understanding of the dynamics for each patient incorporating biophysical, bio-psychosocial, environmental, self-care, educational, spiritual, cultural, ethical, and discharge planning needs.
  • Knowledge of pain management to facilitate patient comfort through a proactive pain control plan.
  • Knowledge of the total care of patients, whose disease is not responsive to curative treatment, focusing on the control of pain and other symptoms.