Perioperative nurses must be BCLS certified but may also need ACLS/PALS certification. Many places prefer you have at least one year of experience in Med-Surg, ER, or critical care.
There are several paths to advance in perioperative nursing with certifications, advanced education, and continuing education.
- Certified Perioperative Nurse (CNOR) requires 2,400 hours of perioperative nursing in the last two years, and 1,200 or more of those hours must be in an intraoperative setting.
- Certified Surgical Services Manager (CSSM) requires a BSN degree and additional contact hours or academic coursework.
You can get your MSN or doctoral degree as a Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS) in the perioperative setting, then apply for your Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS-CP) certification.
- Registered Nurse First Assistants (RNFA) require a BSN, years of OR nursing experience, and additional coursework.