42 Interview Questions for ER Nurses (With Examples)


2. Describe a situation where a patient was not responding to standard treatment. What action did you take?

When a rigid, methodological approach to emergency treatment fails, ER nurses are required to think on their feet and demonstrate sound decision-making ability in time-sensitive scenarios. This question tests a candidates ability to think on their feet. Look out for stories that display bold decision-making under pressure.

How do you manage your relationships with other medical staff?

Collaboration is essential when working as an ER nurse. You will work with various medical staff members across different disciplines or specialties to ensure the patients get appropriate treatment. Employers may ask questions about your ability to work with others to ensure that you could fit onto their team. In your answer, demonstrate that you enjoy the collaborative component of nursing. While working in a high-pressure environment, they also want to assess whether you can maintain positive communication and interpersonal skills. You can provide specific examples of how you have contributed to and participated in medical teams effectively.

Example: “I am very passionate about my nursing career, and I love working with others who feel just as passionately as I do. I have had the opportunity to work with some very experienced doctors, and I have learned so much from working alongside them. I utilize my colleagues as resources for helping me provide excellent care for my patients and develop my skills as a nurse.

In our high-pressure and fast-paced environment, I know tensions can sometimes arise. Recently, I disagreed with a colleague about a treatment method they used that differed from my typical technique. I waited until we had downtime and took her aside to speak privately. After explaining my feelings, I asked her to walk me through her process. It seemed much more efficient, and I started using it myself. Rather than being stubborn, I try to stay open-minded and look at situations from others perspectives. Typically, I end up learning something that makes me better at my job in some way.”

3. Why are you interested in being a nurse?

With the current shortage of nurses and subsequent mandatory overtime, candidates need to treat the position as more than just a job. Suitable candidates will ruminate on the importance of empathy and will describe themselves as naturally caring people. They will demonstrate this by sharing stories of how theyve cared for others in the past.

What would you do if an ER patient did not respond to a particular treatment?


This question helps you find out whether the candidate has a solid understanding of both the standard and more advanced treatments that are appropriate for various cases. You’ll learn how the candidate could work independently and whether he or she would know when to ask for advice from another team member. You can gain insight into the applicant’s understanding of the hospital’s chain of command.

  • Excellent knowledge of standard and advanced treatments
  • Understanding of when to ask for assistance
  • Familiarity with how a protocol works up the chain of command
  • “I would assess the patient’s health history and status and follow standard protocol for escalating treatment. If necessary, I would consult with another staff member.”


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