Nurses are commonly associated with hospitals. With roughly 58% of all registered nurses working in hospitals, it can be easily understood where the misconception came from. But there are still plenty of nursing jobs outside of the hospital, about 42% in fact. These nurses work in a variety of settings with a wide range of patients.
Today, Marian University’s accelerated BSN program highlights the different environments where nurses can work outside the hospital and a nursing specialty so our readers can choose the right path for themselves.
5 Places Where Nurses Can Find Jobs Outside of the Hospital
There are more than just five working environments outside of hospitals where nurses can find jobs, but here’s something to get you started. Registered nurses can find jobs in the following settings:
Clinics needs nurses just as much as a hospital, have the ability to be just as face-paced, and can provide just as much variety, mostly because clinics themselves can vary according to specialty. There are allergy clinics, dialysis clinics, free clinics, ambulatory-surgery clinics, etc. They serve as places for people who don’t necessarily need to be hospitalized, but need more medical attention than they can find at a pharmacy to turn to.
What’s it like to work in a clinic?
- Your patients will likely be all out-patient.
- You’ll work a 40-hour week, but might split those hours up over three or four days.
- A lot of clinics operate on the typical business day schedule, so you likely won’t have late nights or be on-call if you work in a clinic, and your holidays are more likely to be guaranteed available to spend with family.
2. Nursing Homes
Nursing homes provide a calm, comfortable place for the aging and ailing to live out their days. While maybe not as glamorous or fast paced as working in a hospital or a clinic, you can still make a huge impact in the lives of others. By caring for the elderly, you’ll earn the eternal gratitude from your patients’ families.
What’s it like to work in a nursing home?
- For the most part, your patients will be senior citizens.
- Because you spend so much time with the same patients, you will likely form close relationships.
- Just like working in a hospital, there always needs to a nurse close by, so you might have to work nights or weekends.
3. Private Practice
Internists and physicians needs nurses around the office to help take vitals and run diagnostics. It may be repetitive, but you’ll get to know your patients on a whole different level than if you worked in a hospital. You’ll see the same patients year after year, often getting to know whole families.
What’s it like to work in a private practice?
- You’ll have predictable hours. While doctors are sometimes on call, nurses will have a more structured schedule.
- It is a less-stressful, calmer environment than hospitals can be.
- You’ll get exposure to a large variety of tasks, from nitty-gritty paperwork to diagnostics.
Your community’s school system needs a nurse in each education level from elementary school to high school. You’ll work with children, but may occasionally help a teacher now and then. Some of your patients may be trying to fake to get out of a test, so you’ll probably become great at recognizing signs and symptoms of someone who truly isn’t feeling well,
What’s it like to work in a school?
- Your hours will follow the school’s sessions, so you’ll have time off for holidays.
- You’ll get to watch your patients grow up.
- Your job will not only be to care for any sick or injured child, but also to promote health and awareness throughout the school.
5. Rehabilitation Centers
Rehabilitation centers are places where chronically ill can go for long-term, out-patient care. For example, stroke or heart attack victims who, after the episode, don’t need further hospitalization can turn to rehabilitation centers to help them recuperate and get their strength back. Nurses interested in working in a rehabilitation center will often get a specialized certification to become a Certified Rehabilitation Registered Nurse (CRRN).
What’s it like to work in a rehabilitation center?
- The type of center you work in will determine the type of hours you’ll work.
- You’ll get to watch patients improve over weeks (or months) of rehab.
- You’ll work with a variety of people spanning all age groups.
Nursing Job Outside of the Hospital: Labor and Delivery Nurse
In the world of nursing, there are many paths you can take to make your career your own. Today, we are highlighting the exciting and rewarding specialty career of labor and delivery nursing.
Bringing a life into the world is a very special experience, both for the new family and the delivery team they are with in the hospital. Some new mothers even cite their most memorable experience at the hospital during their delivery as being the time spent with their dedicated labor and delivery nurse. That is because it takes a special person to be a labor and delivery nurse.
How do you know if you will make a good labor and delivery nurse?
Well, to start, you can ask yourselves these questions:
- Can I multitask and care for mother and child at the same time?
- Can I handle emotional stress?
- Do I have a desire to help a mother bring her child into the world?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, chances are, with the right training and experience, you will make a great labor and delivery nurse.
Labor and Delivery Nurses Can Work Outside the Hospital
While some labor and delivery nurses do work in a hospital delivery room, many find jobs in a physician’s office or a community clinic. The tasks during the shift of a labor and delivery nurse stay pretty consistent day to day, although some days are busier than others depending on the number of deliveries that day (remember the Old Wive’s tale about more babies being born under a full moon?). Unlike non-specialized RN’s, the labor and delivery nurse cares for not just one patient, but two. Labor and delivery nurses care for mother and eventually baby throughout the entire labor and delivery. These nurses help coach and console the mothers before, during and after labor. Labor and delivery nurses help the doctor by monitoring contractions, assisting in complications, administering medications and epidurals epidurals and, at times, inducing labor. Labor and delivery nurses monitor the mother’s blood pressure as well as the baby’s heart rate. Once the baby is born, these nurses assist in tending to the baby and mother, and help with things such as breastfeeding and diaper changes.
To become a labor and delivery nurse, you must first obtain your Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), ideally from an accredited nursing program like our accelerated BSN program in Indianapolis or our ABSN program in Nashville. It is possible to become a nurse with your nursing diploma or associate’s degree in nursing, but it is harder to gain employment in the modern nursing world without a BSN. After nursing school, you will then need to take and pass elective courses in labor and delivery. You may then start working as a registered nurse after passing the NCLEX and then get experience in the labor and delivery field. When you feel ready and have satisfied the requirements of the National Certification Corporation, you may then go through them to get your Inpatient Obstetric Nursing (RNC-OB) certification. After passing, you will then be a certified labor and delivery nurse and ready to work in the delivery room or your choice of employment! The annual salary of a labor and delivery nurse averages $81,500.
Does the nursing specialty career of being a labor and deliver nurse appeal to you? If so, you can get started on the path towards this rewarding career by contacting us today!