Category Archives: Nursing

What Do Public Health Nurses Do ?

Before finding out what a public health nurse does, what a public health nurse is, should be established. “A public health nurse integrates community involvement and knowledge about an entire population or community with personal, clinical understandings of the health and illness experiences of individuals and families within that population.” This is the official definition of a public health nurse, according to American Public Health Association. In layman’s terms this simply means, that a public health nurse works within a community, and they apply their nursing training to both help prevent diseases, of all varieties, and to nourish health within the community.

What do public health nurses do?
The most common interaction people will have with a public health nurse, is when receiving vaccinations. Also, people might encounter these nurses while receiving a screening. Most often, these nurses work at the local health department. While giving vaccinations and screenings can seem insignificant, in reality these procedures are preventative services that make the community healthier. In addition while performing preventative services, public health nurses collect data from patients that is valuable for long term community health.

Is administering vaccinations and screenings all public health nurses do?
Vaccinations and screenings are a big part of a public health nurses job, however, they are responsible for so much more. Their main focus is preventing infectious diseases. Diseases that have been eradicated can easily return without public health efforts to keep them under control. In addition to communities, public health nurses can also be assigned to specific people groups. For example, a nurse may be given the task of caring for refugees. This can be challenging as most often there is language and cultural barriers to overcome.

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
As previously mentioned, an immense amount of a public health nurses duties involve disease prevention. Prevention, most often, starts with relationships. Nurses build relationships with people within the community they are serving. After a relationship has been established, patients are more likely to seek help when facing a medical problem. When people are more willing to come in for help, many diseases are prevented from getting out of hand. Public health nurses are a huge part of keeping diseases under control.

The nursing profession is a very selfless profession. However, public health nurses go above and beyond their calling. They administer kindness and preventative health care to communities in desperate need. Vaccinations, screenings, and building relationship with members of the communities they serve, are all important aspects of their job. A public health nurse’s job is immensely important to the overall health of the Nation, however, they are one of the most under-appreciated professions in America.

What Is A Cardiovascular Nurse ?

A cardiovascular nurse has a very important and delicate position. As a critical care nurse you would be mainly working in a hospital environment under the directions of the cardiologist helping to care for people suffering from some type of this disease. However, there may be occasions when you would provide in-home care for certain patients.

Normally, you’ll be dealing with adults but people of all ages can suffer from this condition so, there will be times when you’ll treat children and this is something that you’ll need to be prepared for. You would also help to educate patients and their families and support the lifestyle changes they need to make.

Job responsibilities will also include assisting the cardiovascular doctor as well as caring for patients recovering from surgeries that include angioplasty, bypass surgery and patients with pacemakers. Duties also include monitoring cardiac and vascular readings, stress test evaluations, providing postoperative care and assessing and treating patients. These critical care nurses work with children and adults of all ages, although heart disease generally affects older people.

Cardiovascular nurses must first be recognized as an RN or registered nurse. This position requires at least a 2-year associate’s degree but a 4-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing would be better if you plan to advance in this field. After you have graduated and become a licensed RN, additional training and certification are required to become a cardiac nurse. A cardiac nurse will need to be CPR certified in basic life support, as well as advanced cardiac life support. The demand for this career is very high at this time and is expected to increase over the next few years making it a great career to pursue.

Nursing Salaries

You’ve probably heard that nursing is a career that is in demand. What that means is that there is a great need for nurses. But nursing degrees are also in demand because of the salaries that those degrees offer. While not as lucrative as being a doctor or specialist the salary of a nurse is nothing to sneeze at. Starting salary for new RNs average around $40K per year and that goes up over the years to an average of around $65K per year for an experienced RN.

There are some things to consider when deciding whether to pursue a nursing degree for a chance to draw a great salary:

Different locations offer different salaries for nurses. Rural and small hospitals don’t usually have the budget that a huge inner city hospital does. This means that the medical centers and hospitals that are large and in busy locations are often not hiring because the nurses there have a great salary and don’t plan on that changing. Certain positions within nursing offer better salaries than others. For example if you were to become a private duty nurse you could negotiate your salary based upon your duties. If you are a surgical nurse or a nurse in a dangerous area the compensation and salary packages are often designed to allow for the danger or the extra duties.
The schedules that nurses work for good salaries are often long tiring hours with little time off. Imagine spending 12 hours a day performing your duties surrounded by sick, injured, dying and stressed people. This has to have an effect on a nurse’s attitude and the pay needs to be commensurate with all of the challenges that a nurse faces.
If you plan to earn a nursing degree so that you can provide excellent care to the sick and injured, if you have always dreamed of being a nurse or if you’ve come to realize that even though it is a lot of work and not very glamorous that nursing is the career for you then you will probably make a great nurse and should go for your nursing degree.

On the other hand, if you are thinking that an in demand career is going to set you up with a great salary for a cushy job and a cute white uniform there’s a good chance you’ve seen too many television shows and may need a dose of reality before you waste your time attempting to earn a degree in a field that you aren’t interested in other than for the salary.

Nursing salaries also vary according to the state that you live in. For example, the average CAN salary in Florida is between $20,800- $25,000. But the average CAN salary in Oregon is $22,880 – $29,120.

Salary.com says the median expected salary for a typical Nurse Practitioner in the United States is $89,345. The median expected salary for an RN non-specialized is $65,165. It is about the same for a hospice nurse. The median for a Certified Nurse Anesthetist is $145,216 and for a Certified Nurse Midwife is $89,337.

A family nurse practitioner can earn an average median income of $82,590. An acute care nurse can earn $73,141 and a cardiovascular nurse $75,780. A school nurse can earn $43,296 and a pediatric nurse $59,498.

As you can see, the median income varies according to specialty, state you live in as well as the number of years of experience you have in the nursing profession. Even the lowest incomes on the pay scale are decent and a specialty nurse can easily make over $100,000 a year in most cases.

What Does A Lactation Consultant Do ?

Nurses in this field help new mothers master breastfeeding and cope with problems that may arise. Additionally, they advocate for breastfeeding mothers in the workplace, and they work in the health policy arena to encourage the development of progressive breastfeeding programs and legislation. A lactation consultant may work at a hospital, clinic, or doctor’s office. They may have a private practice. Typically, they help mothers and babies with latching difficulties, painful nursing, low milk production, or inadequate weight gain.

How do I become a Lactation Consultant?

The most customary way of becoming a Lactation Consultant is to earn a degree in nursing. Most nurses have earned either an Associate of Science in Nursing (ASN) or a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) from a recognized college or university. During your nursing schooling, it is helpful to take optional courses in neonatal nursing or to specialize in neonatal nursing. After completing a nursing program, all future nurses go on to take an exam called the NCLEX (National Council Licensure Examination) so they can become licensed to practice nursing in their state. After gaining know-how as a staff nurse (good areas are labor & delivery nursing and neonatal nursing) and accumulating significant clinical experience working with mothers and nursing babies, you can proceed to become board certified as a Lactation Consultant through the International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners, Inc.

What Does A Registered Nurse do ?

A Registered Nurse or RN may specialize in the treatment of patients and help to establish patient care plans. Since the education requirements are longer for a Registered Nurse versus a Licensed Practical Nurse, the RN is expected to handle more complex nursing situations and will often supervise LPN nurses, nursing aides, orderlies, nursing assistants, and nursing care technicians. A Registered Nurse can work under the direction of a physician, provide initial assessments, and immediate care for patients. As a nursing career, Registered Nurse is the largest health care occupation and a requirement for many advancement opportunities in the field of nursing.

The majority of Registered Nurses and other nurses work at hospitals. Registered nursing work in a hospital varies by department, shift, nursing care philosophy, and hospital specific procedures. New nurses will undergo a nursing orientation period designed to help them learn and understand their daily routines. A few of the well known hospital departments where RN and other nurses work are the Emergency Room (ER), Intensive Care Unit (ICU), Cardiac Care Unit (CCU), Obstetrics & Gynecology, Operating Room (OR), and Outpatient.

How do I become a Registered Nurse?

To become a Registered Nurse, you must complete a state approved Registered Nurse training program, then pass the registered nurse licensing exam. Registered nursing programs generally last 2 to 4 years and are offered by hospitals, vocational nursing schools, technical schools, community colleges, junior colleges, colleges and universities. The applicable license exam for all U.S. states is the NCLEX-RN, which was developed by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing. The NCLEX-RN exam is computer based and covers 4 subject areas: (1) Safe Effective Care Environment, (2) Health Promotion and Maintenance, (3) Psychosocial Integrity, and (4) Physiological Integrity.

What does a Hospice Nurse do?

Hospice Nurses are specifically educated to provide nursing care for dying patients. They assist those with terminal illnesses to live as comfortably and independently as they can in the time they have left. Hospice patients are not expected to recuperate, so the chief focus of the Hospice Nurse is often pain management. A Hospice Nurse closely monitors the patient to identify which stage of the disease the patient has entered, adjusting the pain management and treatment schedule accordingly. A major part of a Hospice Nurse’s job is educating patients and their families about the dying process and providing emotional support to them. Some Hospice Nurses work in home health care; others work in hospice medical facilities.

How do I become a Hospice Nurse?

The first step toward becoming a Hospice Nurse is to complete an approved nursing education program. The most general way of doing this is to earn a degree in nursing. Most people earn either an Associate of Science in Nursing (ASN) or a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) from an accredited college or university. After finishing a nursing program, all future nurses go on to take an exam called the NCLEX (National Council Licensure Examination) so they can become licensed to practice nursing in their state. Many hospice nurses gain experience as a staff nurse in a hospital or clinic and later in home health care before seeking training as a hospice nurse. After gaining knowledge treating hospice patients, a nurse can progress to become credentialed as a board certified hospice nurse through the National Board for Certification of Hospice and Palliative Nurses.

What Is Nursing ?

You want to become a nurse but do not know what nursing is. Is it just working with patients or are their other aspects to it? Nursing is a healthcare profession focused on the care of individuals, families, and communities so they may attain, maintain, or recover optimal health and quality of life from conception to death. There are specialized areas of nursing that range from dealing solely with paperwork to working directly with patients at their homes, 24/7, often as follow-up care after discharge from a hospital or from a rehabilitation, long-term care, or skilled nursing facility. Some other examples of nursing specialties include but are from limited to:

Hospice Nurses – A hospice nurse works directly with a small number of patients who are deathly ill and not likely to recover. Some only work with one patient in an in home situation. This can be a stressful occupation and it takes a very dedicated person to have this type of career. Many live with their patients until they pass away.

Agency Nurses – These nurses work with agency and typically go to homes to care for patients who cannot afford an in-hospital stay. The nurses set up their own hours and only work when they want to. A prearranged amount of pay is negotiated with the agency prior to the nurse being hired.

Addiction Nurses – Addiction nurses work directly with counselors to help those who are addicts quit their drug of choice.

Flight/Transport Nurse – These nurses are directly responsible for the care of the patient as they are being transported from one location to another. In some areas, there are no trauma centers, so hospitals have to transport these patients to facilities where there is the special care that they need. A nurse is required to go along to make sure the patient is completely comfortable and suffers no ills during this transport.s.
Nurses may practice in hospitals, clinics, physician offices, private homes, schools, pharmaceutical companies (usually as researchers), industry (occupational health settings), schools, cruise ships, retirement homes, hospice facilities, long-term care facilities, military facilities, and even camps. Some nurses may also advise and work as consultants in the the healthcare, insurance, or legal industries. Nurses can work full- or part-time, and many work on a per diem basis or as traveling nurses.n.

One of the most important roles of the nurse is to be a patient advocate and to protect the interests of patients when the patients themselves cannot because of illness or inadequate health knowledge.

Nurses are also patient educators, responsible for explaining procedures and treatments. For instance, nurses teach patients and their families how to eat in a healthier way, tae and/or administer medications, change wound dressings, and use health care equipment.