What Do Nurses Do?
Nurses have a variety of responsibilities during their day to day jobs. However, a lot of what they do depends on the patient they are responsible for assessing and treating.
For the most part, nurses provide their patients with medical support. They administer medication and perform treatment on the patient.
They also record symptoms and other crucial patient information. They assess the recovery process, bandage wounds, provide emotional support, inform and educate the family of the patient on what is going on and how they can help.
It is nurse’s job to give the best care possible to give the patient and help him or her recovery from illness or injury as quickly as possible.
The Nursing Labor Shortage
Let’s take a bigger dive into the labor market for nurses and medical industry. There are some things we need to understand about the labor landscape for nurses.
To put things into perspective, there are over 300 million Americans that currently inhabit our country at the moment. Our country saw a large spike in birth rates and population in the two decades that followed World War 2.
These are all the people that were born between the late 1940s and mid 1960s. This is called the baby boomer generation.The baby boomer generation is still represents a large proportion of our population today.
According to the US Bureau Of Labor Statistics, over 25% of our workforce population are aging baby boomers. People of this generation are at retirement age or quickly approaching it.
They are at the age where they are starting to come across some serious or chronic health issues. This could be mean a huge spike in people checking into the hospital over the next 20 years.
At the moment, there are not enough nurses to deal with the current patient load. What will happen when there is a spike in number of patients checking in? This is going to play a large role in the market demand for nurses over the 20 years.
Where Do Nurses Work?
From the description above it is easy to see that nurses will have a place in healthcare facilities for a while. These organizations include public and private hospitals, nursing homes, health clinics, trauma centers, emergency care centers, private practices, etc.
Because healthcare facilities (like the ones mentioned above) are going to see much more business in the next couple years, nurses will always be able to find job openings in places like these. Given that there is not an over supply of nurses on the labor market (very unlikely).
There are also many specialties that nurses can go into as well. There are forensic nurses, pediatric nurses, neo natal nurses, flight nurses, emergency care nurses, nurse practitioners, nurse managers, travel nurses, orthopedic nurse, cardiac nurse, intensive care nurses, midwifery, etc.
Can Nurses Work In Other Industries?
There is a large demand for nurses outside the typical healthcare sector. Nurses can find occupations is many other industries both public and private. There are many places that require nurses to be onsite and ready to treat patients. These places consist of the military, grade schools, colleges, universities, sports facilities, private events, etc.
Nurses can also work for private companies and businesses that need help interpreting medical information. These places could be law firms studying the cases that involve injured people. Maybe consultants that work in the healthcare sector and need specific medical information broken down in simpler terms.
Nurses can also work with police by studying medical evidence from a victim of a crime. Nurses can help shed light on that medical information and be very helpful to police and attorneys.
There are many lucrative job opportunities for nurses outside the hospital. Nurses can work in many places these days and that is only bound to increase in the future.
Nurses have a lot of options for employment. There is predicted to be approximately 850,000 job openings for nurses by 2025. That is a lot of jobs for the nursing community.
With the nursing shortages, hospitals need nurses now more than ever before. Nurses will always have healthcare facilities to lean back on. Plus more and more industries are finding ways to use nurses.
Now is a good time to consider nursing as a lucrative career path.
1) Goulette, C. “Nursing (Job) Shortage. New Grads are finding the Job Hunt Tough.” Advance for Nurses. Issue January 18, 2010.
2) Noveck, Jocelyn (2009-01-11), “In Obama, many see an end to the baby boomer era”.