What does a ward nurse do?

Job title: Ward nurse

Where you’ll meet them

On the ward.

What they’ll do

Carry out tests and checks, administer medications, assess your condition, liaise with doctors, and try to reduce your suffering. There are many different levels of nurse, right up to consultant level. Sisters, charge nurses and matrons have more managerial duties and are responsible for standards of care, staffing and cleanliness.

Making the most of them

Be aware that most nurses can’t prescribe medications (except for advanced nurse practitioners, who have additional training and experience).


At least three years of nursing training.

What they say

Angela Chesney, senior charge nurse at the Golden Jubilee Hospital in Glasgow, says: “It’s a good idea to write questions down, because you will be seen by lots of different people and there is a lot to take in. And we encourage people to be as open with us as possible, and let us know what matters to them.”

Get our guide to 10 questions to ask your healthcare professional

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