With the current nursing shortage we have on our hands, we need more nurses to care for the disabled and elderly. If you are considering a nursing career, you need to do your homework before you jump into your career. Employment for registered nurses will continue to exceed supply for the foreseeable future. Just because there is high demand, doesn’t mean it is a good career choice for you. Please read below on what you can expect being employed as a registered nurse.
If you like continuous learning, nursing is a great career. Medicine will continue to advance as well method for direct patient care. If you like a fast paced environment, and working with the general public this profession is for you.
To become a registered nurse in the first place you will need an Associated degree or Bachelor’s degree.
The associate degree is a nursing program to prepare graduates who administer patient care in clinics, health care facilities, homes, and even Hospitals. After receiving your associate degree you will be able to apply to take the National Council Licensure Exam.
The bachelor’s degree programs are designed to provide a more solid clinical foundation. The programs are typically four (4) years long. You still must apply to take the National Council Licensure Exam and pass to become a registered nurse.
The biggest difference between the two is that the bachelor degree will pay more as a registered nurse. You can also increase your earnings potentially by obtaining your Master’s in nursing degree.
After you pass the National exams you are ready for employment. As a registered nurse, you will need to decide what area or facility fits you best.
Some of these areas are:
Nursing Homes – In nursing homes you will care for residents who have aging related illnesses such as Alzheimers and dementia. You will be responsible for more supervisory and task related care. This can include creating treatment plans for the residents. This is a growing field as baby boomers retire and will need more care.
Home Health Care – This is a growing area for nurses. The care is provided in the patients home. One of the benefits is that you get to travel from site to site as opposed to stay within one facility. You will more than likely be supervising home health aides in the process. You must work well independently in this field.
Clinics and Hospitals – Hospital or clinical nurses assist patients alongside the Physician’s in administering medications, examinations and check ups. Employment is this area is expected to increase rapidly as patients need more and more acute care. If you like working in a larger environment with Doctors and other nurses, these environments might be a good fit for you.
Leadership – If you are more interested in supervising other nurses, you should look at a career track in nursing leadership. You will need additional training, but this field is vital to provide solid management and oversight of nursing programs in any setting.
Whatever you decide, nursing is a growing field with tons of opportunity. If you take your time to assess the registered nursing employment options you will be glad you did.