What is the Difference between an Enrolled Nurse and a Registered Nurse: A Comprehensive Guide

If you’re considering a career in nursing, it’s essential to know the difference between an enrolled nurse (EN) and a registered nurse (RN). While both professions are integral members of healthcare teams, their roles, responsibilities, and education requirements differ significantly. Understanding these distinctions can help you determine which path is right for you.

In basic terms, an EN is a nurse who has completed vocational education and training to provide patient care under the supervision of an RN or other healthcare professional. They typically work in areas such as aged care, rehabilitation, and community health. In contrast, an RN is a nurse who has completed a degree in nursing and is authorized to practice independently, providing a broad range of medical care in various settings, including hospitals, clinics, and private practices.

While both ENs and RNs have exciting and rewarding careers that require an unwavering commitment to patient care, there’s no denying that there are significant differences between the two professions. In the following article, we’ll examine the various roles and responsibilities of an EN and RN, explore the educational requirements needed to pursue a career in either profession, and provide guidance on which path may be right for you.

Requirements to become an enrolled nurse

Enrolled nurses, also known as endorsed enrolled nurses (EENs) in some jurisdictions, are an essential part of the healthcare system in many countries. They work under the supervision of registered nurses to provide basic care to patients in a range of settings including hospitals, aged care facilities, and community health centers. To become an enrolled nurse, one must meet certain requirements:

  • Completion of a Diploma of Nursing or Certificate IV in Nursing from a recognized education provider. The course typically takes 1-2 years to complete and includes both theoretical and practical components.
  • Registration with the nursing and midwifery board of the state or territory in which you intend to practice. This involves meeting certain competency standards and providing evidence of your qualification and other relevant documents.
  • Approval for employment by a healthcare organization. This typically involves a background check, drug test, and health assessment to ensure that you are fit to perform your duties.

Once you have met these requirements, you can begin working as an enrolled nurse under the supervision of a registered nurse. You will be responsible for carrying out a range of tasks including:

  • Assessing patient needs and reporting changes in their condition to the supervising registered nurse
  • Administering medications and other treatments as prescribed by the registered nurse
  • Assisting with personal care tasks such as bathing, toileting, and grooming
  • Monitoring vital signs and documenting patient information

An enrolled nurse can also choose to specialize in a particular area of nursing, such as aged care, mental health, or palliative care, with further education and training. Some enrolled nurses also choose to undertake bridging programs to become registered nurses.

Overall, becoming an enrolled nurse can be a rewarding career choice for those who are passionate about healthcare and helping others.

Requirements to become a registered nurse

Registered Nurses (RNs) are healthcare professionals who play a crucial role in patient care, making a difference in the lives of those they care for. Unlike Enrolled Nurses (ENs), RNs are highly trained healthcare professionals who have completed extensive education and training to earn their nursing license. To become a Registered Nurse, individuals must meet certain requirements that ensure they have a thorough understanding of nursing theory and practice, as well as the practical skills required to provide safe and competent care.

  • Educational requirement – To become an RN, students must obtain a minimum of a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree from an accredited nursing school. Although some RNs may have an ADN or Associate Degree in Nursing, a BSN degree is preferred by many employers due to the increased level of education in nursing theory, research, and leadership.
  • Licensure – nurses must obtain a nursing license by passing the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) administered by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN). The licensure exam tests the nurse’s knowledge in areas such as health promotion, patient safety, and ethics.
  • Continued education – RNs must fulfill continuing education requirements to maintain their license. This may include attending conferences, completing online courses, or participating in in-person training sessions. These education requirements are meant to ensure that RNs keep up to date with the latest advancements in the field of nursing.

RNs must also have certain personal qualities and skills such as critical thinking, problem-solving, and compassion. They must be able to work in high-pressure situations and be knowledgeable of the ethical principles that guide nursing. By meeting the educational and licensure requirements and developing strong skills, RNs are able to provide high-quality patient care and make a meaningful difference in the lives of those they care for.

Here is a table that summarizes the requirements to become a registered nurse:

Requirement Description
Educational requirement Minimum of a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree from an accredited nursing school
Licensure Obtain a nursing license by passing the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) administered by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN)
Continued education Fulfill continuing education requirements to maintain their license, which can include attending conferences, completing online courses, or participating in in-person training sessions

Becoming a registered nurse requires a significant amount of education, licensure, and dedication to lifelong learning. However, the reward of being able to make a positive impact on the lives of patients is worth the effort.

Scope of Practice for Enrolled Nurses

Enrolled nurses (ENs) and registered nurses (RNs) both provide quality healthcare services to patients. However, there are certain differences in the scope of practice between the two nursing professions. ENs, also known as endorsed enrolled nurses, work under the supervision of RNs and provide basic nursing care to patients in various healthcare settings. Here are the main differences in the scope of practice for ENs:

  • Medication administration: ENs can administer medication and monitor for side effects as long as the medication has been authorized by an RN or an authorized prescriber. RNs have a broader scope of medication administration and can prescribe and administer medication independently.
  • Assessment and diagnosis: RNs are responsible for assessing and diagnosing patients, whereas ENs assist RNs with patient assessment by gathering patient data such as vital signs, symptoms, and medical history. ENs do not make diagnoses or develop care plans without the supervision of RNs.
  • Complex care: ENs are trained to provide basic nursing care such as wound dressings, medication administration, and patient monitoring. RNs have a broader scope of practice and can perform more complex nursing care such as advanced wound care, intravenous therapy, and advanced life support.

ENs provide essential support to RNs in delivering quality healthcare services to patients. They work under the direction and supervision of RNs and are responsible for providing basic nursing care to patients. The scope of practice for ENs is regulated by the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) and is determined by their level of education and training. ENs can undergo further education and training to become RNs and expand their scope of practice.

Below is a table summarizing the scope of practice for ENs:

Scope of Practice Enrolled Nurses Registered Nurses
Carry out nursing care Yes Yes
Administer medication Under supervision of RN or authorized prescriber Independently
Assessment and diagnosis Assist RN with patient assessment Independently
Complex care Provide basic nursing care Advanced nursing care

Overall, ENs have a specific and valuable role in the healthcare team and their scope of practice is an important component of the nursing profession in Australia.

Scope of Practice for Registered Nurses

Registered nurses (RNs) have a wide range of responsibilities and are often considered the backbone of healthcare. They are responsible for a variety of duties, ranging from medical treatments, patient education, record-keeping, and even some administrative tasks. An RN is a healthcare professional who must hold a nursing degree and pass a licensing exam before they can practice. What sets them apart from their counterparts, licensed practical nurses (LPNs) and enrolled nurses (ENs), is their scope of practice and level of education. Here, we will detail the scope of practice for registered nurses.

  • Assessing Patient Health: RNs are responsible for assessing the overall health status of their patients. This involves conducting comprehensive health assessments that can help identify potential risk factors, diagnose health conditions, and develop treatment plans. RNs use their medical knowledge, clinical skills, and critical thinking abilities to make decisions related to patient care.
  • Providing Patient Care: With a focus on patient-centered care, RNs are responsible for nursing interventions that prevent, alleviate, or treat health problems. They provide physical care such as dressing wounds or administering medication, as well as emotional support by actively listening to patients and addressing their concerns. They promote patient health through techniques such as health education, counseling, and advocacy.
  • Collaborating with Other Healthcare Professionals: RNs work closely with other healthcare professionals, including physicians, physical therapists, occupational therapists, and social workers. Effective communication and collaboration ensure that patients receive the best possible care. RNs play a significant role in coordinating care and ensuring continuity throughout a patient’s healthcare journey.

Aside from these general responsibilities, RNs can also have specialized practices. These include:

  • Pediatrics: RNs who specialize in pediatrics provide care for children. They work with pediatricians to evaluate and manage the health of infants, children, and adolescents. They also educate parents on topics such as growth and development, childhood illnesses, and proper nutrition.
  • Oncology: RNs specializing in oncology provide care for patients with cancer. They work with oncologists to administer chemotherapy and other treatments while managing related side effects. They also provide emotional support to cancer patients and their families.
  • Emergency: RNs who practice in emergency care settings respond to patients who need urgent medical attention for conditions such as heart attacks, strokes, or traumatic injuries. They stabilize patients and prepare them for further treatment.

RNs have specific competencies, as mandated by their licensing body, that they are expected to perform throughout their careers. These competencies include:

Competency Definition
Professionalism This competency involves adhering to ethical and legal standards, demonstrating respect for patients, and engaging in ongoing learning and self-development.
Leadership RNs who demonstrate leadership skills can influence the care provided to patients, create safe work environments, and empower other healthcare team members.
Communication This competency involves effectively communicating with patients, families, and other healthcare professionals to provide optimal care.
Clinical practice RNs must have the clinical skills necessary to assess, diagnose, and treat various health conditions.
Professional development Continuous learning is essential in the nursing profession. RNs must seek professional development to stay up-to-date with new trends and technologies in healthcare.
Collaboration RNs must work collaboratively with other healthcare team members to provide coordinated, patient-centered care.
Assessment Assessing patients’ health status involves collecting comprehensive information about patients’ conditions, history, and other relevant factors.

As you can see, the scope of practice for registered nurses is wide-ranging. RNs are skilled healthcare professionals who provide a critical role in patient care. They have specialized competencies and can practice in various settings. Their advanced education and skills allow them to provide a high standard of care for patients and families.

Job duties of enrolled nurses

Enrolled nurses (ENs) are an important part of the healthcare industry. They work under the guidance and supervision of registered nurses (RNs) and doctors to provide essential patient care. ENs are different from RNs in terms of their level of education, responsibilities, and legal scope of practice. Here are some of the job duties performed by enrolled nurses:

  • Assisting with patient care: ENs are responsible for helping patients with activities of daily living, such as bathing, dressing, grooming, and feeding. They also assist with mobility and transferring of patients.
  • Administering medication: ENs may administer medications or injections under the supervision of an RN or doctor. They need to have a good understanding of medications, possible side effects, and proper documentation of dosage and administration.
  • Monitoring patients: ENs keep track of vital signs, such as blood pressure, pulse rate, respiratory rate, and temperature. They also assist with monitoring of blood sugar levels, fluid balance, and other health parameters as required.

ENs have a critical role in maintaining a patient’s comfort, safety, and wellbeing during their stay in the hospital. They collaborate with the healthcare team and report any changes in the patient’s condition to the RN or doctor for further action. ENs also provide emotional support to patients and their families during difficult times.

ENs work across various healthcare settings, including hospitals, aged care facilities, and community health centers. Their role is essential in providing quality care to patients and supporting RNs and doctors in their work.

Job duties of enrolled nurses: Summary
Assisting with patient care Help with activities of daily living, mobility, and transferring of patients
Administering medication Give medications or injections under the supervision of an RN or doctor
Monitoring patients Track vital signs, blood sugar levels, and other health parameters

Overall, ENs play a vital role in the healthcare industry by providing essential patient care, monitoring health parameters, and collaborating with the healthcare team. Their work reflects their dedication to the wellbeing of patients and their families, and they are an integral part of the healthcare workforce.

Job duties of Registered Nurses

Registered nurses are healthcare professionals who are responsible for providing holistic care to patients. They are highly-trained and skilled professionals who have completed a nursing degree and have been licensed by a state board of nursing. Their job duties are vast and vary depending on their specific area of specialization. Below are some of their general job duties:

  • Performing physical exams and health assessments of patients
  • Administering medications and treatments as per physician’s orders
  • Monitoring and recording patient’s vital signs and medical history
  • Assisting doctors during medical procedures and surgeries
  • Creating and implementing a patient care plan
  • Providing emotional support and counseling to patients and their families
  • Collaborating with other healthcare professionals to provide a holistic care approach
  • Maintaining accurate medical records and documentation
  • Performing diagnostic tests and analyzing results
  • Overseeing medication administration and patient care activities by other healthcare staff

Registered nurses might also specialize in different areas, such as surgery, emergency care, pediatrics, or oncology. This specialization allows them to focus their skills and knowledge to better serve and support their patients.

In addition to the job duties of registered nurses, they also play a significant role in educating patients and their families about their health, medications, and treatments. RNs are an essential part of the healthcare team and work to ensure that patients receive high-quality care while promoting overall wellness.

Overall, registered nurses play an important role in the healthcare industry by providing compassionate and comprehensive care to patients. Their dedication and knowledge help to improve the overall wellbeing and health outcomes of patients, making them essential members of the healthcare team.

Salary differences between enrolled nurses and registered nurses

One of the significant differences between enrolled nurses and registered nurses is their salary. Generally, registered nurses earn more than enrolled nurses due to the higher level of education and responsibilities that come with their role.

  • Enrolled nurses’ salaries usually start at $45,000 per year and can go up to $65,000 per year, depending on their experience and location.
  • On the other hand, registered nurses’ salaries start at $65,000 per year and can go up to $130,000 per year, based on their specialization, experience, and location.
  • Moreover, registered nurses have a wider range of job options, including supervisory roles and management positions, which offer higher salaries.

Below is a table that demonstrates the difference in salary between enrolled nurses and registered nurses in Australia.

Position Minimum Wage Maximum Wage
Enrolled Nurse $45,000 $65,000
Registered Nurse $65,000 $130,000

It is essential to note that the salary range mentioned above is based on the Australian healthcare system and can differ based on the location and healthcare system of other countries.

What is the difference between an Enrolled Nurse and a Registered Nurse?

1. What is an Enrolled Nurse?

An Enrolled Nurse is a healthcare professional who has completed a Diploma of Nursing and is registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia. They work under the supervision of a Registered Nurse and have a limited scope of practice.

2. What is a Registered Nurse?

A Registered Nurse is a healthcare professional who has completed a Bachelor of Nursing or higher degree and is registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia. They have a greater scope of practice and are responsible for the overall care of patients.

3. What are the differences between their roles?

Enrolled Nurses are usually responsible for secondary care tasks, such as monitoring vital signs, administering medication, and providing basic wound care. Registered Nurses, on the other hand, have a wider range of responsibilities, including assessing patients, developing care plans, and managing complex medical conditions.

4. What kind of training do they receive?

Enrolled Nurses complete a Diploma of Nursing, which can be done in 12-24 months, while Registered Nurses complete a Bachelor of Nursing degree, which takes 3-4 years. Both types of nurses also undergo ongoing training to stay up-to-date with the latest healthcare practices.

5. What kind of employment opportunities are available?

Enrolled Nurses can work in a variety of healthcare settings, such as hospitals, aged care facilities, and community health centers. Registered Nurses have more employment opportunities, as they can work in specialized areas, such as intensive care units, emergency departments, and operating theaters.

Closing Thoughts

We hope this article has helped you understand the differences between Enrolled Nurses and Registered Nurses. Both types of nurses play vital roles in the healthcare system and are dedicated to providing the best possible care to their patients. Thank you for reading, and feel free to visit us again for more informative articles.