Nursing As A Career

Nursing is one of the most in-demand careers currently in the country, with hospitals and private health organizations everywhere clamouring for nurses with minimal or no experience to fill the massive demand caused by the surging demographic shift towards the elderly. We explore what is involved with a career in nursing, where you can get qualified, and what you can expect once you don the uniform and become an actual, working nurse.

Nurses are health experts whose work involves promoting health, disease prevention, and assisting patients cope with sickness. The profession combines physical, biological and social sciences with nursing theory and technology to administer healthcare services to patients of all ages from diverse cultural backgrounds. Their scope of practice is unique and seeks to address various needs of patients including physical, psychological, social, intellectual and spiritual. Nurses provide attentive, intensive and highly-personalized care in collaboration with various members of the healthcare team.

The profession offers a wide spectrum of career opportunities which range from entry-level practitioners to researchers at doctoral level. In addition, nurses can offer advocate services for patients and communities, formulate and manage nursing care plans, counselling individuals and groups on proper care and assisting patients and families in improving and maintaining optimal health.

They may also work as clinicians, researchers, care managers, educators and administrators. Career opportunities in Nursing provide diverse work environment settings which include hospitals, healthcare homes, health agencies, schools and institutions, community health clinics and long-term care facilities.

Getting Ready For a Nursing Career

Taking nursing as a career involves putting you in a healthcare environment that is interesting and challenging as well as rewarding. The career calls for one to be caring, committed and compassionate to helping people. In addition, one should be in a position to communicate complex health issues courageously and effectively. Students considering taking nursing as a career should prepare themselves adequately all the way from high school education.

Your college preparatory curriculum should encompass English, Mathematics, Science and social studies. English will equip you with essential verbal and written communication skills. Algebra is vital in preparing you for chemistry and medication administration while chemistry and biology are essential in comprehending the human anatomy.

Social studies will be also instrumental for you in providing a base level of understanding of fields such as psychology, to help you understand your patients better and allow you to provide more personalized care for them.

Education, Training and Certification

A three-year RN degree can land you an entry-level job in nursing. However, there is a growing national demand for that all nurses undergo a BSN (Bachelor of Science in Nursing) degree program. Most nursing schools in the US are now offering accelerated Bachelors as well as Masters programs. This follows from the ever-increasing demand for more highly-skilled nurses in the healthcare sector. One may also begin as healthcare assistant and advance to apply for a degree course. Upon entry into the profession, you may choose to take up a particular speciality of practice. Each option has its prerequisites in terms of education, training and certification. Working as a nurse will require registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Council.

Nurses with a baccalaureate degree are packaged with handle more challenging roles in the healthcare environment. The nurse is better qualified to deal with critical care, public health, outpatient care and mental health. Their role moves beyond the conventional hospital setting and they can hence provide acute care in private homes, community clinics and outpatient centers and consequently provide more basic and preventive services in the community level.

The curriculum of a bachelor’s program in nursing includes scientific and clinical courses, humanistic skills and decision-making skills. This helps the graduates taking nursing as a career in a better position in handling comprehensive nursing care plans, understanding the patient’s individual conditions in terms of symptoms, treatment, and danger signs, and the used of advanced technology in providing quality health care.

Benefits of Nursing as a Career

Working as a professional nurse affords you personal gratification and growth. Making positive impact on peoples live on a daily basis can be immensely satisfying. In addition, the knowledge gained in nursing can be helpful for you, your family and community at large in improving health and awareness. Nurses enjoy career mobility. Upon becoming a registered nurse you can choose to take your career in various directions in the profession.

The knowledge of nursing makes it easier for you to work in trauma care services as well as justice and legal systems. You may also take up jobs in teaching, research, writing and social services working with children and the elderly. Nurses also enjoy great work flexibility in the schedules. Most healthcare settings operate on a 24 hours-daily basis allowing you numerous options to work on shifts.

Another benefit of taking nursing as a career is job security. There is a very high demand for nurses all over the US. This follows from a critical nursing shortage which has been projected to worsen for a few more years that guaranteeing that the nursing jobs will be in demand for some decades to come.

Nurses are well paid, with the Bureau of Labor Statistics projecting that nurses will have an average annual income of 62,000 dollars by the year 2016. Nursing has also been reported in a number of surveys as one of the top growing jobs.

The profession comes with wide opportunity. There are over 100 specialities in nursing which call for different types of training and you can always find a speciality that interests you. The rapid growth and constant changes in health care provides an ever exploding demand for nursing practitioners to manage programs, facilities, systems and nursing education institutions.

Nursing is also a great second career choice. The competitive salaries for nurses and the high demand in the profession is prompting majority of people to take up the profession as a second career choice. There are Universities and colleges who have already formulated nursing programs for people with degrees in other fields.

With its members over 3 million, nursing is gradually becoming the largest lucrative career for many in the health care. Nursing as a career will not only broaden your horizons but will present you with numerous opportunities both for personal and professional growth.

The nursing knowledge and experience will be instrumental in dealing with different issues surrounding your life and community. The nursing knowledge base is vital in formulating public policy, organizing and managing disaster relief efforts, educating and sensitizing your community on matters concerning health and guiding critical studies and research critical in health care provision.

Nursing provides rewarding and satisfying careers to men and women who enjoy helping and working with people and its range of practice is practically limitless.

photo credit: Lori Greig via photopin cc
photo credit: The U.S. Army via photopin cc

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