Med-Surg Nurse Interview Questions and Answers

Med-surg nurse interview questions

A med-surg or medical-surgical nurse performs a plethora of duties. When a patient is on the journey of recovering from a surgical procedure, the med-surg nurse is often responsible for managing patient care.

A med-surg nursing job could be very hectic and involve many patients, meaning there are many things to remember.

Moreover, medical-surgical nurses are often required to check patient labs, order medications, assess patients’ conditions, and communicate with the patient’s family.

Interviewing for a med-surg nurse job can be stressful, but understanding what to expect during the interview process can help alleviate some of that stress.

Scope of Med-Surg Nurse Interview Questions:

When attending an interview for a med-surg nurse position, it is essential to understand the scope of questions that may arise.

A seasoned interviewer should ask very specific questions that address the job description and qualifications of a med-surg nurse.

In general, interviewers will ask situational, behavioral-based questions, experience-based questions, and knowledge-based questions.

Situational Interview Questions

The interviewer will ask you about the steps you would take in a certain situation.

For example, the interviewer might ask: “How many patients would you typically have in a med-surg unit?”

Behavioral-Based Questions

The interviewer will generally ask behavioral-based questions to address your communication skills and problem-solving abilities.

See also: Behavioral Nursing Interview Questions

Asking you to describe your conflict-resolution skills is an example of this type of question.

Experience-Based Questions

It is very likely that the interviewer will ask you experience-based questions.

This type of question is used to determine your qualifications for the job.

The interviewer may ask “How many times has a patient’s condition deteriorated in your presence before you contacted a doctor?”

Knowledge-Based Questions

The interviewer will likely ask knowledge-based questions concerning the medical field, your nursing education, and skills on a med-surg floor.

For example, he or she might ask “How would you prioritize the actions of a patient’s family members?”

With that in mind, what are some of the common med-surg nurse interview questions?

Those are coming up next.

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Medical-surgical nurse interview questions and answers

Medical Surgical Nurse Interview Questions and Answers

If you went through the web right now, you would find thousands upon thousands of med-surg nurse interview questions.

However, do not let this overwhelm you because below are seven common ones that will give you a better idea of what to expect during your med-surg nurse job interview.

See also: Nursing Interview Questions

1. What are the steps you would take to assess a patient?

When the interviewer asks you this type of question, focus on the general gist.

The interviewer wants to know the steps you normally take to assess a patient.

In this case, your response will include assessing vital signs, reviewing lab results, and asking the patient how he or she is feeling.

Example answer:

I usually assess a patient’s vital signs.

This assessment will give me an idea of the patient’s health and what is going on in his or her body.

I also review the results from lab work and talk to my patient about how he or she is feeling.

See also: Can Nurses Order Lab Tests?

2. How do you prioritize the actions of a patient’s family?

It is important for you to prioritize the family members, but also allow them to be involved in their loved one’s care.

You should go about it by getting their input first and then making the assessment of what should be done next.

This approach will help avoid any family conflict.

See also: Nursing Conflict Scenario Examples Interview

Example answer:

I will ask the patient’s family members what they think should be done to care for their loved one and what they want to do.

Then I can prioritize the most important actions to be done next.

See also: Telephone Triage Nurse Interview Questions

3. What do you know about this hospital?

Do your research about the hospital that you are interviewing at before answering any of their med-surg nurse interview questions.

This includes knowing the mission statement of the hospital, what they specialize in, and their vision.

Example answer:

I know that XYZ Hospital has a humble beginning of just having 50 beds.

However, it has grown to be one of the top hospitals in the state with 900 beds for both med-surg patients and critical care patients.

See also: ICU Nurse Interview Questions

4. What would you do if a patient’s condition suddenly deteriorated?

It is important for you to be prepared for unexpected changes in your patient’s condition.

This may be due to an infection, unexpected drug reaction, or some other type of complication.

In these cases, be prepared to act quickly.

Therefore, when answering this question, be sure to mention that you would contact the physician immediately.

Example answer:

I would act quickly by first assessing the situation and determining what is happening.

I would also contact the physician immediately.

See also: Urology Nurse Interview Questions

5. Tell us a little about yourself.

This is one of the most common med-surg nurse interview questions and it gives you a chance to talk about yourself and what makes you unique.

Demonstrate your ability to communicate well and emphasize some of your skills that make you a good fit for the company.

Example answer:

I am Elsa and I graduated from XYZ University in 2014.

Being a nurse has always been my passion and I love patient care. I am really good at communicating with people and I am a skilled nurse.

This is why I believe that XYZ Hospital will be a great fit for me.

I am a passionate nurse who enjoys assisting doctors in improving the lives of their patients.

I believe that my experience and education will help me to excel at XYZ Hospital.

See also: Plastic Surgery Nurse Interview Questions

6. What are your greatest strengths?

When the interviewer asks this med-surg nurse interview question, you should highlight the skills that make you an asset to the company.

You can mention some of your skills like:

  • communication,
  • teamwork,
  • trustworthiness,
  • or your experience in the field.

Example answer:

I am a skilled nurse with strong communication skills.

I am also a compassionate nurse who values patient care. I can work well in a team, but I am also independent when needed.

Lastly, my greatest strength is how I can be trusted with anything.

See also: Transplant Nurse Interview Questions

7. Where do you see yourself in five years?

One of the most common surgical nurse interview questions is where do you see yourself in 5 to 10 years.

Be prepared for this question and come up with a good answer.

For example, you can mention wanting to be the best nurse that you can be or maintaining your license.

At the same time, show that you are committed to developing your skills and being a great asset to the company.

Example answer:

In five years, I see myself as a top-performing nurse at XYZ Hospital.

I will be an expert in my field and known for providing excellent patient care.

I also see myself as a valuable resource for other nurses to learn from and a leading figure in my profession.

See also: Pre-Op Nurse Interview Questions

How to Prepare for Surgical Nurse Interview Questions?

As most career coaches say, preparation is the key to success.

Therefore, since you have an idea of the most common med-surg nurse interview questions, you should begin to prepare for the interview.

1. Know the company and job responsibilities

Do some research on the hospital and be familiar with its history, mission, and services.

You can also Google them to see if they have their own website or LinkedIn page with more information on the company.

2. Take note of the job description

You can read their website to see what is expected of you as a nurse.

Highlight or take notes on the job responsibilities, required skills and education, and desired qualifications.

See also: Responsibility of a Nurse

Moreover, list any responsibilities that are essential for the job to be done well.

Be aware of what is going on in the healthcare industry.

Take note of current events that may affect hospitals and nursing, such as the Affordable Care Act, health care reform, and any other relevant topics.

This will show the interviewer that you are well-informed about the industry and will therefore be an asset to the company.

4. Peruse your books or textbook

Look at your bookshelf or go online to look at your nursing textbooks.

You may even be able to access it through your school if you are still taking classes.

Your textbook may give information on some complex topics or help refresh your memory on certain skills or practices.

5. Practice answering the interview questions

You can talk to a friend or family member about the questions and practice answering them.

You can also search for sample med-surg nurse interview questions online.

If you are still in nursing school, you can ask your professors for sample interview questions. Practice helps gain the necessary confidence to tackle those difficult questions.

See also: Interview Questions for New Grad Nurses

Conclusion: Med-Surg Nurse Interview Questions

Interviewing for the position of med-surge nurse can be an intimidating process, but with the right preparation and mindset, you can ace this.

With these 7 most common med-surg nurse interview questions, you can now craft an amazing response.

You know what you are best at and what makes you a great team member.

Be confident and you will surely get the job.

Good luck with your interview!

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About Ida Koivisto, BSN, RN, PHN

Ida is both a registered nurse and public health nurse. Her passion is to provide as much valuable information about nursing to the world as possible. In her spare time from work and blogging, Ida loves to work out at the gym and spend time with relatives.