As a nurse, you will provide direct care and support to patients in various settings. Students studying to become nurses frequently work in a variety of departments and locations to gain hands-on experience in different medical specialties. Learning about the many nursing specialties available can help you decide which career path is best for you. This article will look at some nursing specialties and their associated salaries and job duties.
Choosing a nursing career may have been simple, but deciding between nurse practitioner specialties or switching from one specialty to another isn’t. Programs at Spring Arbor University can help you prepare for a variety of roles in the healthcare sector. Nurses can work in various settings, including correctional facilities, hospitals, rehabilitation centers, retirement homes and universities. Furthermore, nurses can play multiple roles even within their place of work. Nurses can work in various settings, including ER, dentistry, neonatal, pediatrics and more.
The variety of roles and environments in which you can work is one of the advantages of pursuing a career in nursing. As a result, nurses can expand their knowledge and focus on the areas of nursing in which they are most interested. Some of the most popular nursing specialties are discussed below.
Do you believe that “there are no problems, only solutions”? Nurse anesthetists do. They are natural problem solvers who want to help the anesthetist manage patients’ pain and recovery by assisting with the administration of anesthesia and other medications. As the assistant to the anesthetist, you will join some of the industry’s highly skilled registered nurses (RNs).
Aesthetic nurses care for patients before and during surgery or interventional procedures performed under regional, local or general anesthesia. They work with the anesthesiologist to prepare patients for surgery, prepare medications and equipment, administer general, regional or local anesthesia, monitor patient condition and manage any possible complications.
Formal training, as with many other medical careers, is an essential part of the path to becoming a qualified nurse anesthetist. Whether you are already a registered healthcare practitioner or entirely new to the medical field, the way to becoming a nurse anesthetist will differ.
As a registered nurse (RN), you will work in residential care facilities, hospitals or government offices, recording and monitoring patients, performing essential procedures such as catheterization or bandaging, and assisting patients and physicians in communicating information. Some registered nurses choose to specialize in a specific work environment or field of healthcare, such as rehabilitation nurses, plastic surgery nurses or military nurses.
Once you’ve decided on a career in nursing, the steps to becoming a registered nurse are relatively simple. First, you must obtain the necessary degree. You must then pass the NCLEX Exam. Finally, in the state where you intend to practice, you must obtain a license.
Ambulatory care nurse
Ambulatory care nurses primarily treat outpatient patients with minor medical conditions. They frequently provide care to many patients within a short space of time. Before working as this type of nurse, many of these nurses first obtain a BSN (Bachelor of Science in Nursing). Some, however, will have an associate degree.
As of September 2022, the average ambulatory care RN salary in the United States is $77,100, with a salary range of $68,300 to $86,600. Salary ranges can vary greatly depending on a variety of factors, including education, certifications, additional skills and years of experience in your field.
Acute care nurse practitioner
Critical care nurses are advanced practice nurses who provide care to patients who are critically ill. These nurses work in intense environments and need to stay calm and collected at all times. Assessing the patient’s health history, coordinating patient care, ordering diagnostic tests, performing therapeutic procedures and prescribing medications are all aspects of an acute care nurse practitioner’s job.
Acute care NP programs typically last 2-3 years, depending on the program’s specifics and whether they are full-time or part-time. Students who follow the full-time progression plan and obtain clinical placements on time can complete a program in as little as two years. Students typically complete the program in three years because most will be required to work during the program.
Licensed practical nurse
LPNs are sometimes referred to as LVNs, or licensed vocational nurses. If you want to be a nurse, becoming an LPN is one of the quickest ways to get there. To become an LPN, you must enroll in an approved LPN program, typically available at technical schools, community colleges and some universities. LPN program lengths vary, but it usually takes 1-2 years to become an LPN in the US, and it is common to find LPN programs that last 12-18 months.
A licensed practical nurse assists physicians with patient office visits by interviewing patients, recording vital signs such as blood pressure, height, pulse rates and weight, as well as seating patients in rooms. A licensed practical nurse also administers and documents medication on behalf of a physician. LPNs typically work in hospitals, long-term care facilities and physician offices. LPNs who want to advance in nursing can become registered nurses.
Some nursing specialties are a cross between nursing and other fields. If you’re interested in the legal system or crime scene investigation, you can pursue a career in forensic nursing. After a crime has been committed, you will collect evidence and write reports for the courts in this area of nursing. You could also testify as an expert witness in court or assist victims as needed. To pursue this specialty, you must complete forensic nursing coursework, specialized training and a certification exam with the International Association of Forensic Nurses.
General nurse practitioner
General nurse practitioners typically need a Master of Science in Nursing and a license to practice. They can work in various primary care settings, such as clinics and hospitals. They can also establish their own independent practice. This is the most adaptable and applicable nursing specialty.
In addition to providing traditional aspects of nursing work such as immunizations, vaccinations and holding clinics for patients with conditions such as asthma, diabetes and heart disease, these nurses assess, screen and treat people of all ages. In addition to promoting women’s and men’s health, a crucial part of the general practice nurse (GPN) role is to provide health advice in areas such as smoking or weight loss. In addition, the position enables nurses to form connections with their patients while managing their conditions and improving their physical and mental health and well-being.
Neonatal nurse practitioner
Neonatal nurse practitioners are in constant demand. This extremely gratifying specialty entails looking after newborn babies. In addition, nurses in this field provide medication, oxygen and various NICU duties to sick and premature newborn babies. Although you can work as an RN in this sector, obtaining your neonatal nurse practitioner certification is an excellent way to advance in this field.
A neonatal nurse practitioner earns an average of $131,000 per year, or $63 per hour. According to the BLS, nurse practitioners positions, including neonatal nurse practitioners, will increase by more than 50% in the next eight years. The increase in premature births and the steady population rise offers neonatal nurses with a promising job outlook.
When you enter the nursing profession, you are not only committing to caring for others, but also to doing so in a specific area of nursing. You must decide what type of nurse you want to be. This is not an easy decision to make, but it is also not an irreversible one. You can change your nursing specialty similar to changing your college major. However, when deciding on an initial specialty, you must exercise caution.
Over the last century, the nursing profession has evolved significantly, including introducing specializations for nurses with specific knowledge and experience in certain fields. As a result, there are numerous areas where a nurse can specialize, and the list is growing.
Because all nursing specialties are in high demand, you can’t go wrong with any certification. The nursing jobs listed above have recently performed well in projections and rankings, but keep in mind that there are seemingly endless opportunities in nursing and medical careers in general! We encourage you to pursue your interests and passions no matter how far along you are in your career.