12 Registered Nurse Interview Questions and Answers

Updated December 9, 2021
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There are many things to consider when preparing for an interview. 

The best way to be successful at any RN interview is to do thorough research ahead of it.

You may want to look through the prospective employer’s website and find out what the healthcare facility is all about. 

This information will help you immensely especially when you are asked questions specifically aimed at determining how much you know about the profession and prospective employer.

Interviews are stressful events for candidates as their career progression depends on them. That is why so much time is placed on preparation.

If you have an idea of at least some of the questions that you will be asked during an interview for an RN position, you will be less anxious about the interview on the whole.

Some sample interview questions and their answers for a registered nurse position are provided below for your guidance:

12 Common Registered Nurse Interview Questions and Answers

1. What, in your opinion, are the typical duties of a registered nurse?

Some of the primary duties of a registered nurse include:

  • implementing healthcare plans
  • handling patients’ records
  • taking and recording vitals
  • dealing the patients according to set healthcare plans
  • observing how patients respond to treatments
  • handling limited interventions
  • assigning tasks and managing activities of nursing assistants and LPNs.
2. What traits qualify you for the nursing profession?

Compassion, patience, organization, tolerance, and excellent interpersonal skills render me a strong candidate for this role.

3. Tell me about your education and medical affiliations?

I am a Registered Nurse Licensed to practice in New Jersey. I possess a formal degree in bachelor’s of science in nursing that I earned at the International Nursing College, New Jersey affiliated with the American Nursing Association.

4. What personal qualities do you believe a registered nurse should possess apart from professional training?

I believe that it is imperative to be emotionally stable and possess the ability to remain calm even when circumstances do not allow it.

Also, I am a firm believer in the fact that a nurse cannot be successful unless she is organized and efficient.

5. Have you ever been in a position where your decision-making skills made a positive impact? Tell us what happened?

I was working at the A&E some years ago when a patient with severe hypothermia was rushed in. Since it was late at night and the hospital was not adequately equipped to handle such a dire emergency at that time, I had no idea but to take matters into my own hands.

There was no time to wait for a doctor to assess the situation. While staying within my limitations, I gave the patient an adrenaline injection which saved his life.

6. Do you have any experience in administration?

Yes, I filled in for the nursing administrator for 3 months. My responsibilities included supervising the nursing staff, maintaining the supplies inventory, monitoring patient care services, and charting duty schedules for nursing staff

7. Tell us about a time when your administrative skills came into play.

The clinic that I was working for had severe problems where patient scheduling was concerned as a result of which patients would have to wait for hours before the doctor saw them.

I intervened and assisted the front desk person in designing and implementing a scheduling system and managed to resolve this problem.

8. What have you done during the previous years to keep your medical knowledge current?

I have actively been participating in various nursing seminars hosted by the American Nurse Association and am subscribed to several e-journals on nursing which I wait for and read each month eagerly. Also, I recently attended an on-the-job training on nursing administration.

9. How do you handle a patient who keeps complaining of pain that is not being cured by treatment?

Firstly, I try my best to ease the patient and relieve as much pain through painkillers as safely possible after consulting the doctor.

If the patient continues to complain I explain to him or her that the more they focus their attention on the pain, the more they’ll feel it. I’d offer some distraction by changing the TV channel or suggesting the attendant get a book for them or give them more company.

10. Are you comfortable working in a team-oriented environment?

Yes, teamwork is very useful in this profession and being a people person. I enjoy it a lot. However, if needed I am equally capable of working independently as well.

11. Share a stressful experience that tested your skills?

Three years back during the holiday season we were short of nursing staff, and there was a big fire in a nearby residential building. It was my first exposure to an accident like this, and the shortage of staff and paramedics made it more difficult.

After the first few minutes of disorderliness, I took charge and started systematically giving help from one side to the other of the ward and quickly developed a short historical record of each patient after providing initial first aid.

12. What would your previous employer say about you?

I think they would verify that I am a dependable and responsible person who always tries to be of maximum help.

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