Today is the right time to build a career in nursing due to its high demand in different areas and environment. The demand for registered nurses (RN) is continuously increasing with a job outlook of 22% increase in employment for the next 8-10 years. In addition, there will be thousands of job openings due to the need of employers to replace nurses who left the field. The growth in nursing jobs is also caused by an increase in preventive care and a projected increase in the number of older individuals who need treatment. Registered nurses also make up 15% of the medical workforce, making it the largest and most popular profession in the health care industry. Registered nurses are trained to treat patients, educate the community, conduct diagnostic tests, provide emotional and mental support to their patients, establish nursing interventions and build nursing care plans. Registered nurses are also in demand in different fields and specialties. In general, nurses find employment in hospitals, but they may also find jobs at a doctor’s office, home health care agencies, long-term care facilities, government, schools, and nursing registries. Registered nursing offers prospective RNs an attractive income. In May 2008, the median yearly earnings of registered nurses were estimated at $62,450.
Another type of nursing profession that is also in high demand is the Licensed Practical Nurse or LPN. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), LPNs held about 753,600 healthcare jobs in 2008. It is projected that the demand for LPNs will increase at a rate of 21% within the next 10 years. Because of this, following a career path towards becoming an LPN is also a good decision. Licensed Practical Nurses work under the supervision of a physician and registered nurses. There are also many LPNs that tend to leave their occupation permanently, furthering the demand and need for LPNs in many facilities. Although hospitals are the largest employers of LPNs, they also have great job prospects in other facilities such as home health care facilities and at the doctor’s office. These facilities need LPNs because they are trained to measure the patients’ vital signs, height, weight, blood pressure, pulse, and temperature. LPNs have a great job outlook with average earnings at approximately $39,000 per year.
Aside from registered nursing and licensed practical nursing, there is also a career in becoming a certified nursing assistant (CNA). The BLS estimated that approximately 1.5 million individuals were working as CNAs in 2008. It is expected that employment opportunities for nursing assistants will increase at a rate of 18% between 2008 to 2018. CNAs generally are employed in hospitals, but most also find work in nursing facilities. Because many CNAs tend to leave the occupation to become LPNs or RNs, there is a great amount of job openings and opportunities for those who are interested in entering this field. According to the US Department of Labor, the median hourly earnings of CNAs were estimated at $11.46 an hour.