A liaison nurse, or nurse liaison, is a position that requires a diverse skill set and is often found in rehabilitation, hospice care, assisted living and post-acute medical care centres. From the recruitment of new patients, to developing processes for patient referrals and discharges, liaison nurses fill an important marketing and sales role in their organisations.
The main duties of a liaison nurse include coordinating communications between physicians, discharge planners, case managers, medical staff and caregivers regarding the admission and discharge of patients. These nurses must assess incoming patients and make sure they meet the medical facility's admission criteria. In addition, liaison nurses must establish and develop relationships within the hospital and larger community by participating in events, scheduling speaking engagements and working closely with the marketing and sales teams.
Students who wish to enter a liaison nursing position should enrol in a bachelor's, associate's or nursing diploma program that offers certification as a registered nurse (RN) or a licensed practical nurse (LPN). Nursing programs include hands-on clinical experience in hospitals, as well as coursework in anatomy, physiology, microbiology, chemistry and nutrition.
Liaison nurse professionals must have excellent communication skills, as they will need to form strong relationship with key hospital and medical personnel. In addition, some nurse liaison jobs require candidates with sales and marketing experience, or a minimum of one to two years working in the health care industry. Venous access skills, or experience injecting medication directly into patients' bloodstreams, as well as CPR certification are sometimes preferred by employers.
According to cbsalary.com, the average salary for a nurse liaison is £41,681, as of early 2010. However, this figure may differ depending on factors such as employer type, location and years of experience. For example, Simply Hired states that the average nurse liaison salary in Raleigh, North Carolina, is £31,200 as of April 2010.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) states that nursing will be one of the fastest growing occupations during the next decade. Registered nurse jobs are projected to grow by 22 per cent between 2008 and 2018 as older professionals continue to exit the sector. Nursing professionals with master's or advanced degrees in health administration or nursing will have access to management-level positions. Nursing professionals with extensive work experience and excellent job performance will have the best opportunities.