Nursing: A Career with High Demand and Growth
Trained nurses are among the most sought-after professionals. They are a critical asset in life-saving situations and can make a huge different to society with their role in assisting people to make lifestyle changes and caring for those with chronic self-limiting health concerns, says an article by Lurleen B. Wallace Community College. Here’s a look into what the future holds for trained nurses.
Exploring the Demand for Nurses
The demand for trained nurses is expecting to grow by 12% from 2018 to 2028, a rate that is higher than the average of other professions, according to figures provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
The US healthcare spend is high and has been escalating continuously over the past few years. Healthcare spend of the country grew almost 4% in 2017 to reach a whopping $3.5 trillion, accounting for 18% of the US GDP that year, according to figures released by the National Health Expenditure Accounts. This spend equates to nearly $11,000 per person. As the healthcare industry expands, the demand for trained nurses grows alongside.
Among the leading reasons for the rising healthcare spend is America’s aging population. The situation is set to worsen going ahead. By 2030, all baby-boomers will be older than 65 years, constituting 21% of the population, versus 15% in 2018, according to figures published by the US Consensus Bureau. This aging population will need professional caretakers, which indicates a rise in the demand for trained nurses.
Another major factor contributing to the rise in demand is the expansion of insurance coverage.
Shortage of Trained Nurses
Against this backdrop of high and growing demand for trained nurses, there is likely to be a shortage of such professionals, again attributable to America’s aging demographics. In January 2019, one third of the nursing professionals were already 50 years or older, according to an article on the National Center for Biotechnology Information. Given this aging workforce, around 1 million nurses are predicted to retire in the next 10 to 15 years, as per a report published by the American Journal of Medical Quality.
Career Prospects for Trained Nurses
With demand set to rise and supply expected to shrink, the prospects for trained nurses seems bright. The average wage of nurses has been on the rise and large hospitals in states like Texas, California and Florida offer attractive signing on bonuses of $10,000 and more to registered nurses.
Nursing Specializations in High Demand
Although all nurses are in high demand, there are some specializations that are more lucrative.
Certified Nursing Anesthetist
A certified nursing anesthetist is an advanced nurse who is responsible for administering anesthesia under the guidance of an anesthesiologist. These nurses are critical for surgery rooms, ambulatory centers, maternity rooms and other hospital facilities. A certified nursing anesthetist is among the best paid professions, with the mean wage of $174,790 per annum, according to figures provided by the Bureau of National Statistics.
Certified Nurse Midwife
A certified nurse midwife is responsible for delivering babies and helping the new mother through a variety of health issues, providing family planning education and other prenatal/postnatal care.
Certified Dialysis Nurse
Patients suffering from kidney diseases or failure may require a dialysis machine to remove and dispose waste from their blood. A certified dialysis nurse helps such patients with hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis. Their responsibilities include checking the vitals of the patient and answering questions related to the treatment.
A nurse practitioner is an advanced practice nurse with additional responsibilities such as examining patients, diagnosing illness and prescribing medicines. In 20 states, nurse practitioners are not even required to work under the supervision of a doctor, according to an article on Nurse.org.
With such a bright future and many specialization options to choose from, this could be the best time to pursue a course in nursing.