A career in the medical field is nothing if not rewarding. Not only do you get to take care of the ill and help them recover, but you also grow as an individual and become more confident in the work you do. There are many different areas you can specialize in and your preferences and qualities will definitely play a role in choosing a job niche that suits you. If you love working with children and caring for them, you’ll probably go on to become a pediatric nurse.
As a pediatric nurse, you’ll be working with babies, toddlers, teens and your task will be to provide them with the best possible care. Your daily responsibilities will be to examine children, take their blood, perform diagnostic tests, etc. A part of your job will be to communicate with parents regularly and give them sound advice in regard to their children’s healthy upbringing. But, how do you actually become a pediatric nurse and what does the role entail? To save you some time, we’ve compiled a short list to help you land that dream job, so keep reading to learn more.
Where will I work?
As a nurse, you won’t necessarily be working in a hospital even though most of us associate this position with hospitals—we can thank Grey’s Anatomy for that. However, there are various settings you could work in. Naturally, hospitals are an option and they are usually a great choice because they employ more people so you’ll most likely be able to get hired in some of your local hospitals very quickly.
In addition, you could also find a job in a private clinic or even a physician’s office where you’ll be working in a less-crowded environment, which is great if you’re an introvert or if you prefer to keep to yourself. Also, schools are an option and that means your task will be to treat sick students and update their medical records regularly.
What salary can I expect?
Pediatric nurses were and have always been in demand and the overall job outlook is nothing short of excellent. The average salary for pediatric nurses in the US was reported to be somewhere in the ballpark of $75, 000. Do have in mind that this figure varies depending on the state and your level of experience and qualifications. The more qualified you are, the higher the figure will be.
As mentioned, your income will also depend on your place of residence. For instance, some of the highest-paying regions in the US when it comes to pediatric nursing are Massachusetts, Hawaii and Connecticut. So, good news to all of you living in these parts of the state!
What kind of education will I need?
Whichever profession in the medical field you decide to pursue, you’ll need to put in the effort and time to get the relevant education. First of all, you’ll have to acquire a Bachelor degree and become a registered nurse before you can specialize in a specific field. If you choose to continue your training in pediatrics, you can pursue an Advanced Degree.
The best part about being a pediatric nurse is that you have a wide range of learning opportunities at your disposal. For instance, you could take online courses and get your PALS certification that you’ll later be able to add to your resume.
Do I possess the right qualities?
Even with the highest possible qualifications, it will all be in vain unless you have the right personal traits for the job. As a pediatric nurse, the first thing you must have is patience. Working with children is never easy as they often misbehave and disobey, so you’ll have to be very patient if you don’t want to go mad before you’re 40.
Also, you should be gentle and able to adjust your communication to make it easier for the children to identify with you and feel relaxed. An anxious and impatient person with a hot-temper would probably not be best for this role.
The bottom line
Hopefully, the short list has answered your questions about pediatric nursing and helped you decide whether this career path is the right one for you. If so, don’t hesitate to sign up for a nursing program and start learning right away.