A Day in the Life of an Emergency Room Patient Care Technician

where do patient care technicians work, patient care technician in ER, emergency roomThis engrossing healthcare profession can also be highly satisfying

A career as a patient care technician can be highly rewarding, as well as challenging. People in this profession provide basic patient care to patients throughout their day and make up an important part of the healthcare team, along with doctors and nurses. Many patient care technicians look forward to going to work every day because they know they’re in the position to help patients during what can be a difficult time of their lives.

An emergency room is just one place where a patient care technician can work. Here are some insights into what some typical duties can be for someone in this position in such a fast-paced environment:

  • The PCT may take blood, print and affix the labels needed to identify the vials, and deliver the vials to the lab for the appropriate tests.
  • If the doctor is preparing a gunshot victim for surgery, the PCT might enter the orders into the electronic medical records system.
  • If a nurse decides that a patient needs an EKG, then the PCT would locate the EKG machine, bring it into the room, and take the patient’s EKG. When this is complete, she places one copy in the patient’s chart and provides a second copy for the doctor to review.
  • If a patient needs an x-ray, the PCT would take that patient in a wheelchair to the X-ray department.
  • If a patient is hooked up to a heart monitor as well as an IV, and needs to use the restroom, the PCT would assist. First the PCT would confirm with the nurse on duty both that the patient can be disconnected and get out of bed. Then the PCT would help the patient get from the bed to the restroom, assist in the restroom if needed, and then guide the patient back to bed. Once the patient is settled comfortably, the PCT would reapply the heart monitor.
  • For any patients who have provided urine samples, the PCT would label the samples appropriately and walk them down to the lab for testing.
  • If a patient has broken an arm, the PCT might assist the doctor in providing the patient with a splint to immobilize the injury. This can include keeping the patient calm and talking to him during the procedure.
  • After a patient is moved to another unit, the PCT would help the nurse to change the bed sheets and clean up the room in preparation for another patient.

A long day in the emergency room can be exhausting, but patient care technicians often love the fast pace and the range of responsibilities that emerge over the course of the day. If you’re interested in learning more about the patient care technician training program at the Harris School of Business’s Danbury campus, fill out our simple online form. Your future career path could begin with us!


This post is part of the weekly blog of the Harris School of Business. We offer a range of career training programs at eight campuses located in New Jersey, Delaware, Connecticut, and Pennsylvania. Contact us today to schedule a tour!