Occupational & Environmental Health Nurses:
- focus on preventing work-related illnesses and injuries and promoting health and safety in worker populations and communities
- function in multiple roles, including administrator/manager, clinician, consultant, educator, and case manager
- work in a variety of practice settings, such as industry, government agencies, health care facilities, case management, insurance and consulting firms
- collaborate with professionals and community members representative of diverse disciplines, interests and environments
Occupational health nurses' scope of practice is determined by their individual state nursing board and is written in state law. In Washington State the Nursing Commission maintains licensure responsibility and interpretive authority. In addition, the American Association of Occupational Health Nurses (AAOHN) establishes Standards for Occupational and Environmental Health Nursing practice.
Occupational health nurses may become certified as Occupational Health Nurse Specialists (COHN-S) through the American Board of Occupational Health Nurses (ABOHN). Nurses may qualify to sit for the exam at the completion of their occupational health nursing program, if they meet the ABOHN requirements.