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State of Washington Classified Job Specification


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Class Code: 285E
Category: Health Care

Class Series Concept

The principal activity of the Registered Nurse series is to provide nursing care in a variety of settings and supervision of nursing personnel in varying degrees.

For purposes of allocating positions, the following word definitions shall apply:

Hospital - A building or structure made up of several units designed for the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of physical, mental, and the medical aspect of social ills, usually lasting longer than 72 hours.

Infirmary - A building or place set aside for the short-term care (usually not to exceed 72 hours) for the sick or injured. This type of patient may be too sick to go to work, but not in need of hospitalization or may be preparing for or recovering from surgery or other needed hospitalization.

Clinic - A building or site where patients are examined, diagnosed or treated for illnesses and injuries or receive preventive care but are not housed.


Provides professional nursing services in a variety of settings, under the guidance of a higher level nurse.

Distinguishing Characteristics

Under general supervision, prepares, carries out, evaluates and revises treatment plans for individual patients based on personal observations and on the observations and recommendations of physicians, psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, and/or other nurses; coordinates communications between the physician, social workers, psychologists, and/or practical nurses concerning nursing care and policies.

Typical Work

Performs lead work over clinic volunteers and staff of practical nurses during a shift; instructs staff of practical nurses in proper nursing techniques and in hospital policies and procedures; orients new employees;

Assists the physician or mid-level provider with physical examinations and techniques such as: suturing, or minor surgery such as removal of warts, lancing of boils, or the removal of damaged fingernails or toenails;

Assists physicians or mid-level provider in conducting periodic clinics for physical examinations, tuberculosis detection, diagnosis of other conditions; gives immunizations; arranges for clinic supplies, locations, records, volunteers, and paramedical assistants;

Under the direction of a physician, mid-level provider, or senior registered nurse treats minor ailments and gives first aid;
Records and administers or oversees the administration of medications such as tranquilizers, anti seizure medications, immunizations, vitamins, blood transfusions, and antibiotics as directed by a physician or mid-level provider;

Observes and records the physical and mental condition of patients, noting physical and/or behavioral changes, the effects of drugs, and incidents; takes and records blood pressure, pulse rate and body temperature of patients; evaluates physical and mental conditions of patients to determine whether they require the attention of a physician;

Takes samples of blood, urine, sputum, feces, gastric contents, gynecological cultures for laboratory tests; instructs patients on giving sputum, urine and other specimens; assists higher level nursing personnel;

Cares for and counsels ill, injured or infirmed patients; provides for safety, comfort and protection of patients; responds to patient's needs; encourages healthy mental attitudes and new behavior patterns;

Sterilizes medical supplies, establishes security measures to prevent loss or theft of drugs and supplies; requisitions supplies; delivers and distributes supplies;

Performs other work as required.

Knowledge and Abilities

Knowledge of: professional nursing principles and concepts; dynamics of interpersonal relationships; theory, science, and treatment techniques in a particular specialty area of practice such as mental health nursing, infection control, emergency response, etc.; available community resources.

Ability to: use nursing principles, judgment and knowledge; work effectively with others; assume responsibility for professional growth and development; work as a team member; communicate effectively with others.

Legal Requirement(s)

A valid Washington State license to practice as a registered, professional nurse.

Desirable Qualifications

Graduation from an accredited school of professional nursing.

Class Specification History

General revision and title change (formerly Psychiatric Nurse l): 8-9-71
Revised definition, minimum qualifications and delete distinguishing characteristics: 5-9-80
Revised minimum qualifications: 1-13-95
Revise class. Revises class code (formerly 56300), class series concept, adds distinguishing characteristics; adopted May 10, 2007, effective July 1, 2007; general revision revises typical work, knowledge and abilities, and minimum qualifications; effective July 1, 2007.
Base range salary adjustment adopted 6/30/2017, effective 7/1/2017.
Shadow class adopted 6/22/2023, effective 7/1/2013; SEIU salary range 60N.