Nursing is a vast field. As the world is progressing, the scope of the nursing profession is expanding into various roles. It is not just limited to clinical responsibilities. Nurses could be researchers, leaders, entrepreneurs, policymakers, peer reviewers, trainers, managers, administrators, speakers, and whatnot in today’s world.

Nursing is an exceptionally growing area. It is projected to grow by 9% from 2020 to 2030 further. Furthermore, The Registered Nursing workforce is expected to grow from 2.71 to 3.24 million by 2022 in the U.S.  Throughout history; the world has faced severe nursing shortages. This has made the entire hospital culture promote nurses to pursue a doctorate in Nursing Practice. This enables the nurses to practice their profession to their fullest and deliver services and treatments unabridged.

Gaining nursing expertise is not restricted to classrooms now. Today, everyone can gain expertise in the nursing profession through extensive online learning options. Different online specialisations have gained immense recognition in the professional world. Consequently, different well-known universities offer degrees from BSN to MSN online. This is a huge benefit as it enables people to learn at their own pace and be the director of their journey.

Career Paths

As mentioned before, the nursing profession is more than just on-field practice. At the same time, a huge chunk of nurses prefers to build their careers in Advanced Practice Registered Nursing (APRNs). On the flip side, other nurses chose to work more off-ground in nonclinical roles.

Clinical Roles:

APRNs work on patients seeking health care in clinical settings. They are qualified to assess, diagnose, and manage specific types of patient care. Usually, nurses pursue clinical work in Physician’s Offices, Medical and Surgical Offices, and Outpatient Care Centres. There are four major career paths in clinical roles.

i. Certified Nurse Practitioner:

Certified Nurse Practitioners work on patients. They have advanced knowledge in diagnosing illnesses and prescribing medications accordingly. The areas in which CNPs usually have keen expertise are primary care, acute care, geriatrics, and women’s health.

ii. Certified Nurse Midwife:

Certified Nurse-Midwives are primary healthcare providers specialising in health issues related to women. They have expertise in multiple problems that women might face. These areas include gynecologic and family planning, preconception, pregnancy, childbirth, postpartum, and newborn care. They also excel in prescribing medical prescriptions and basic nutrition counselling. Certified Nurse-Midwives deal with women of all ages.

iii. Certified Registered Nurse Anaesthetist (CRNAs):

CRNAs is a profession that allows nurses to work with patients in the operating room, Intensive Care Units, or any surgical facility. They are responsible for administering

  • General Anaesthesia,
  • Regional Anaesthesia, and
  • Local Anaesthesia.

CRNAs are responsible for taking care of several complications that require the patient to be treated with anaesthesia. These include surgery, diagnostic tests, newborn deliveries, pain management, and trauma stabilisation. CRNA is not only an interesting position to work in but also incredibly well-reputed. CRNAs were ranked number 8 in best healthcare jobs in 2022.

iv. Clinical Nurse Specialist CNSs:

CNSs are experts in assessing, diagnosing, and treating patients. They also master in different fields, including health care management and research. The fields in which CNSs specialise are primarily:

  • Psychiatric Health
  • Pediatrics
  • Geriatrics
  • Pain Management
  • Wound Care
  • Critical Care
  • Rehab Services

· Non-Clinical Roles:

Nurses with DNPs can work in different positions than directly providing health care to patients. They can provide services via different leadership, management, policymaking, and other positions. These areas include working in organisational management, information systems, policymaking at the state or national level, and populations. Some emerging positions in the field of non-clinical nursing include:

  • Nurse Manager/ Administrator: A nurse manager is responsible for managing the necessary tasks and operations among the staff members. They ensure that all the health care facilities in the organisation are running smoothly. In short, the nurse managers serve as an intermediary between the frontline staff, physicians, and the administration.

This position requires strong communication and analytical skills. The tasks are based on assigning and ensuring work for many employees. Hence, it should be made sure that the manager can communicate aptly.

  • Nurse Informaticist: Nurse Informaticists are responsible for bringing in new information and better treatment methods. They bring in new systems and work on forming strategies to implement them. Their major tasks include
    • Concept representation
    • Research and education
    • Information presentation
    • Implementation of information technology.
  • Clinical Trainer: A clinical trainer essentially works to improve the human resources of a health care organisation. They assess the necessary skills required in the health care workers. Furthermore, they monitor the workers’ performance and build strategies to improve them. They also design training pieces based on the employees’ assessments to empower the workforce.

Conclusion:

Nursing is a field with the exponential growth expected in the coming years. It has been predicted that the nursing field will expand by 9% from 2020 to 2030. Numerous positions in nursing have also gained attention throughout these years. Today, the nursing roles have crossed the clinical positions to other non-clinical positions. The goal of the nursing profession is to make use of the knowledge that they gain ultimately. Most healthcare organisations emphasise that nurses get a doctorate in their specialisations to serve the healthcare industry to the fullest.

The nursing roles can be divided into two major categories. The first category is jobs related to clinical roles. These roles encompass advanced practice registered nurses. The primary functions in this field include Certified Nurse Practitioner, Certified Nurse Midwife, Certified Registered Nurse Anaesthetist, and Clinical Nurse Specialist. The latter category includes non-clinical positions such as research, policymaking, administration, training, etc.