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Job description

The Registered Nurse is responsible to deliver quality-nursing care to chemically dependent and psychiatric patients who are members of the early adult (18-45 years), middle adult (45-59 years), and older adult (60+ years) population. Serves actively and constructively as a member of the multidisciplinary team.


Knowledge & Training

1. Ability to react appropriately to interventions common to chemically dependent, psychiatric, and other nonviolent crises.

2. Basic knowledge of abnormal psychology as typically found in the adult and geriatric, chemical dependency and mentally ill populations.

3. Familiarity with psycho-pharmacy medications with the adult and geriatric addictive disease population.

4. Basic nursing teaching and training skills.

5. Basic knowledge of detoxification assessment and treatment procedures, including the ability to identify signs of withdrawal from major classes of chemicals.

6. Familiarity with the disease concept of addiction and knowledge of 12- step treatment procedures.

Familiarity with medical and physical aspects of chemical dependency and psychiatric treatment.


1. Demonstrates proficiency in administering the fundamentals of the nursing processes.

2. Obtains history, and effectively assesses the patient’s physical, psychosocial, environmental, self-care, and educational abilities. Records vital signs, notes changes, and pursues more specific investigation as needed.

3. Demonstrates the ability to prepare, administer, and record medications in accordance with the attending physician’s orders.

4. Demonstrates clinical understanding of both drug and alcohol toxicity by correctly identifying patients in a state of detoxification and identifying withdrawal signs correctly and consistently.

5. Demonstrates clinical understanding of psychiatric illnesses and treatment milieus.

6. Uses assessment information to develop a care plan that communicates enough information for incoming personnel to adequately care for the patient.

7. Consistently demonstrates the ability to give clear informative shift reports to the on-coming staff.

8. Consistently utilizes two client identifiers prior to procedures and administering medications.

9. Consistently utilizes the “Read Back” policy for verbal order, telephone orders and critical test results.

10. Consistently performs withdrawal assessments in a timely and accurate manner.

11. Consistently administers medication in an accurate and timely manner.

12. Consistently utilizes the “Approved Abbreviation List” and refrains from utilizing abbreviations on the “DO Not Use List”.

13. Uses treatment plan as basis for providing safe and therapeutic care to patients. Consistently follows established standards, policies and procedures in providing nursing care. Accepts accountability for clinical care of assigned patients, including supervision of non-professional personnel.

14. Determines when physicians need to be contacted for clarification of orders, medications, physician routines and expectations, and new developments or medical concerns regarding patients.

15. Review of patient records for indications that an emotional/ behavioral evaluation needs to be conducted. Evidence of ongoing reassessments is consistently reflected in the patient's treatment plan and progress notes, and weekly staffing meetings documents these reassessments.

16. Documentation review shows that forms, notes, detoxification logs, and other applicable written information have been completed promptly and accurately.

17. Admissions, transfers, discharges and unusual occurrences are clearly and promptly communicated to necessary personnel.

18. Room assignments are appropriate to the patient's needs, age, gender, and level of functioning, detoxification status, and physical needs. Unit placement recommendations reflect the patient's ability to interact within the therapeutic community.

19. Reviews indicate that special precautions have been implemented as necessary and in accordance with established protocols and physician’s supervision and direction has been properly sought.

20. Communicates unit rules and policies clearly to patients and their family members and seeks feedback to assure a clear understanding.

21. Promptly and correctly documents education, which has taken place, and records a patient's level of understanding.

22. Properly instructs and guides LPN’s, in -patient care responsibilities and assignments.

23. Demonstrates skills in detecting and treating side effects of administered medications.

24. Demonstrates knowledge of AMA protocols and skills and uses skills properly. Demonstrates ability to defuse combative or aggressive patient behaviors.

25. Demonstrates understanding of therapeutic community group meetings and encourages patient’s active and constructive participation.

26. Consistently respects the confidential nature of patient and hospital information by following all release of information policies and procedures and by refraining from improperly divulging information.

27. Attends in-service training, seminars and participates in other educational activities as required.

28. Performs other duties as assigned and/or requested.

29. Assumes responsibility for professional growth by current reading and attendance at educational programs outside the facility.



Nursing Diploma, associate degree or bachelor’s degree in Nursing required.



One (1) year of experience in psychiatric and/or chemical dependency preferred.

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