British Columbia Institute of

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NSPO 7550 - Perioperative Clinical 2: Implementing the Circulating Nurse Role

Nursing Specialty Perioperative Part-time Studies Course

School of Health Sciences

BCIT is planning for a substantial return to on-campus activity for the fall 2021 term as informed by BC Public Health Officer guidelines. Refer to each course listing for details.

Course Details

In this 150-hour clinical course, learners will develop beginner competency in the circulating nurse role. Students will implement theory from NSPO 7100, 7250/7251, and 7450/7451 in the practice setting. By engaging in nursing practices that progress from simple to more complex, learners will develop the skills needed to prepare patients for and support them during anesthesia and surgery. By course completion, learners will implement a framework for practice and develop skills to function independently as a novice circulating nurse. Participants will apply key concepts of safety, surgical conscience, and aseptic technique in the circulating role to promote a safe and supportive environment for patients and perioperative team members. Participants will gain further insight into the concept of caring as they work in partnership with patients and families during surgery and anesthesia. Learners will focus on utilizing comprehensive assessment techniques. Students will use effective communication, organization, and prioritization strategies to provide safe, patient-focused care. Additionally, participants will apply sound clinical decision-making processes during the pre-, intra-, and immediate postoperative phases of perioperative care. The course will emphasize the circulating nurse's collaborative role with patients, colleagues, instructors, and multidisciplinary team members. Students will create opportunities to humanize the perioperative environment for patients and team members using collaborative strategies. Leadership strategies at a novice level will be employed during clinical practice. In addition, learners may begin to integrate practices of the scrub and circulating nurse roles.



This course isn't currently offered through BCIT Part-time Studies. Please check back next term or subscribe to receive email updates.

Learning Outcomes

As licensed health care practitioners, learners will practice in accordance with professional standards of practice throughout the course. In this course, learners will have opportunities to use the processes of critical thinking, systematic inquiry, communication, collaboration, leadership, professionalism and clinical decision making. Upon successful completion of this course, learners should be able to:

  • Implement current ORNAC Standards of Care and relevant theory in the circulating role.
  • Demonstrate the ability to organize and prioritize core entry-level activities in the circulating role for patients undergoing common, less complex surgery.
  • Use a practice framework to gather information in an organized and systematic manner through patient assessment, conversational interview, and the preoperative checklist.
  • Analyze various sources of information to identify potential and actual patient and procedure problems.
  • Communicate assessment findings in a timely, comprehensive, and systematic manner to team members.
  • Use appropriate and effective communication techniques with patients, families, and team members.
  • Correctly complete perioperative documentation.
  • Apply surgical conscience to patient care in the circulating role.
  • Employ ethical, competent and safe actions with patients and families.
  • Advocate for patients in the circulating role.
  • Enact circulating nurse activities to protect self, patient, and team members from risks and hazards encountered in the perioperative environment.
  • Enact a plan for individualized patient-centered care in the circulating role using a clinical decision-making framework.
  • Engage in independent and collaborative clinical decision-making activities related to patient assessment and admission, anesthesia induction and emergence, surgical intervention and the sterile environment.
  • Begin to combine the circulating and scrub nurse roles at the novice level.

Effective as of Fall 2021

Related Programs

NSPO 7550 is offered as a part of the following programs:

School of Health Sciences

  1. Perioperative Nursing Specialty
    Part-time/Distance & Online Learning   Advanced Certificate
  2. Specialty Nursing (Perioperative)
    Part-time/Distance & Online Learning   Bachelor of Science in Nursing


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