If you have a wish to serve human kind by the serving the veterans and elderly patients, you can become a Geriatrics Nurse (GN). Geriatrics nurses are specialized in offering cares to elderly patients, who have varied health concerns including week immunization systems due to the old age, cancer, osteoporosis, fatigue/ immobility, Alzheimer’s and others.
Geriatrics Nurse Work Settings
The specialized qualification of Geriatrics Nurse is required in different types of the health care settings such as home health care, hospitals, adult care centers, health clinics, nursing homes, long term care units, physician’s offices, rehabilitation centers, veteran centers, hospice facilities and others.
Geriatrics Nurse Work Duties
These nurses are required to execute various types of duties essential for the caring of the elderly patients. In course of their employment, they perform responsibilities such as providing personal cares, basic nursing cares, administer medications and see that the medications are taken as per schedule, provide preventive health care for diseases and disabilities, constant monitoring the condition of the patient, count, measure, relieve their pains and record vital signs.
In addition their duties also include, educating the patient on the treatment procedures, counseling family members on the certain medical complications that may arise later in life, charting out plans for the treatments and ducument, rehabilitate patients after ailments and injuries.
GN Nurse Qualities
It is also necessary that a Geriatrics Nurse must possess compassionate nature and humble behavior, must bear excellent communication and interpersonal skills and must have patience, while dealing with the elderly patients. They must try to create strong emotional bonds with the patients and families, and treat the patients under their care with dignity and respect. They must also maintain the patient’s privacy and confidentiality and respect their rights and independence.
GN Nurse Education
In order to gain the eligibility to work in the entry level geriatrics position, you must be licensed Registered Nurse, with an associate or bachelor’s degree in nursing, and clear the NCLEX-RN exam for licensure and get registered as a Registered Nurse. You must also earn CPR or Basic Life Support (BLS) certification, as they constitute vital requirement for your working as a GN.
You can also pursue advance Geriatrics studies for specialization, which can grant you certification as nurse practitioners. The prerequisite for the specialty Gerontological Nursing Certification is minimum MSN Degree. The passing of the certification exam, offered by the American Nurses Credentialing Center will get you certified for advance level practicing as NP for working in the Geriatric field .
Geriatric Nurse Salary
Gerontological nursing ranks among the 10 best paying NP specialties as per the ADVANCE and Scrubs magazines, which also estimate their salary $93,668 as of 2010, and as per the PayScale, their salary ranges from $80,473 to $95,592 annually.
Their salary also depends on the work experience, job location, type of the work settings, education and certification, and job positions.
The nursing shortages for registered and advance level practicing nurses for higher job position and for advance cares have created heavy demands for the GN. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the projected job growth of these nurses will be around 25 percent between 2008 and 2018.