Practice Nurse

Job Description:

Practice nurses work in GP surgeries to assess, screen, treat and educate patients, and help doctors give medical care.

Job Category:
Health Care & Social Assistance

What you will do:

As a practice nurse you could:

  • Run clinics for conditions like asthma, diabetes, heart problems and skin disorders
  • Apply dressings, treat wounds and take samples of blood and urine
  • Give advice on family planning, contraception, blood pressure and stopping smoking
  • Carry out infant injections, vaccinations and travel immunisations
  • Help patients to manage long term conditions


You’ll need:

  • Knowledge of Psychology
  • Knowledge of English language
  • To be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

As well as:

  • Counselling skills including active listening and a non-judgemental approach
  • The ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • Sensitivity and understanding
  • Patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • To be flexible and open to change (adaptable)
  • Customer service skills

Restrictions and Requirements
You’ll need to pass enhanced background checks.

Illustration of employee looking at workspace

Entry Requirements:

Becoming a Practice Nurse involves providing healthcare services in a primary care setting, often working in collaboration with doctors and other healthcare professionals. While specific GCSE subjects are not typically mandatory for this career, certain subjects can provide a foundation for skills and knowledge relevant to nursing and healthcare, such as:

  1. Science (Biology and Chemistry): Biology provides insights into human anatomy, physiology, and health-related concepts. Chemistry is important for understanding medications and their interactions.
  2. Mathematics: Mathematics can be useful for calculating medication dosages, interpreting test results, and managing patient records.
  3. English: Strong communication skills are essential for interacting with patients, documenting care plans, and collaborating with other healthcare professionals.
  4. Health and Social Care or Psychology (if available): These subjects can provide insights into patient care, psychology, and the social factors that influence health and well-being.
  5. Physical Education (PE): While not directly related, physical fitness and a healthy lifestyle are important for healthcare professionals to set a positive example for patients.
  6. IT or Computer Science (Optional): Proficiency in using computer systems and electronic health records is becoming increasingly important in healthcare settings.
  7. Languages (Optional): Knowing a second language can be advantageous, especially if you’ll be working in a diverse community where patients may have different language preferences.

Post School

You can get this job through:

Direct Application
To apply directly to work in general practice, you need to be a qualified and registered adult, child, mental health or learning disability nurse.

When applying for jobs, it might give you an advantage if you have experience in:

  • Chronic disease management, like diabetes or
  • Asthma
  • Child immunisations
  • Cervical screenings
  • Taking blood samples
  • You might need to do the Specialist Practitioner –
  • General Practice Nursing course.

You might need to do the Specialist Practitioner – General Practice Nursing course. This is an approved programme by the Nursing and Midwifery Council.

Return to nursing
If you’ve been out of nursing for a while, you could do a return to general practice nursing course.

You do not need previous general practice experience. You can do work placements in the community to help you move into a general practice nurse role.

You’ll also need to register with the Nursing and Midwifery Council.

Working Hours and Environment:

A typical week consists of 38-40 hours of work. You could be required to work evenings/weekends.

Career Path & Progression:

With experience you could:

  • Specialise in health promotion, chronic disease management, diabetes or asthma care
  • Do a further qualification to become a nurse practitioner and manage your own caseload of patients
  • Move into management, teaching or research