Nurses are a critical part of a functioning healthcare system. They help prevent people from getting sick, promote good health and assist patients, providing in-hospital care and emotional support. America is suffering from a shortage of nurses – and the problem will only get worse as the population ages. Nursing is a challenging career, but by helping to meet the ever-present demand, you can enjoy a high salary, benefits, job security and the satisfaction of helping to save lives.
Nursing Career #1: Electrophysiology
Electrophysiology is a specialized type of cardiology, involving the diagnosis and treatment of heart arrhythmias (irregular heart rhythm) and related issues. EP (electrophysiology) nurses plan, evaluate and assess, ensuring that patients receive safe, appropriate care.
EP Nurses also assist during cardiac procedures, administering “twilight sedation” and scrubbing patients prior to the surgical implantation of pacemakers and internal cardiac defibrillators. Working in an EP lab requires nurses to be highly autonomous and good at making important decisions.
The average annual salary for electrophysiology nurses is $63,000.
Nursing Career #2: Surgical Lab Nurse
In the past, surgical skills were learned and developed in the operating room. That’s no longer the case – as surgery becomes more complex and patients face longer wait-times, a new way of training has emerged: the surgical lab. In this advanced learning environment, hands-on training, including safety procedures, lab set-ups and instrumentation is provided.
Surgical lab nurses – who may work in the learning lab or the operating room – must be capable of performing in a fast-paced, dynamic environment. Such nurses help with pre and post-operative care – starting intravenous drips, giving patients post-surgical bedside care and assisting with cleaning and bathing. Good communication is an important asset – a surgical lab nurse educates patients about post-operative procedures.
The average annual salary for a surgical lab nurse is between $63,000 and $69,600.
Nursing Career #3: Cath Lab Nurse
One of the most sought after RN jobs is that of a cath lab nurse. These nurses take care of patients while they undergo various cath lab procedures – like cardiac catheterization, in which a thin tube is inserted into a blood vessel which joins the heart. Cath lab nurses don’t perform the catheterization themselves – rather, they assist the doctor and administer pre and post-operative patient care. Such nurses also help place heart stents, pacemakers and cardiac defibrillators, and operate medical equipment during operations.
Many operations take place during regular hours, but emergencies happen. Cath lab nurses need to be available at all times. The work isn’t always fast-paced but can be stressful, which requires calm, focus and the ability to work well under pressure.
The average annual salary for a cath lab nurse ranges from $65,000 to $83,000.
Reap the Rewards of a Wonderful Career
Nursing can be challenging – it’s not for the faint-hearted. However, by joining an outstanding medical institution like St. Elizabeth Healthcare in Cincinnati, OH, you’ll be helping to fill America’s nursing gap – as well as creating a stable, well-paid and respected career for yourself.