Like many other health care professions, nursing offers a wide range of areas to specialize in and practice exclusively. Many specializations require a you to pass a series of exams or fulfill certain job qualifications. However, a lot of the healthcare organizations you work for will provide specialization courses and training so that you can prepare yourself while continuing to work and gain experience.
Neonatal nurses care for newborn infants who are born prematurely, with birth defects/malformations, or are at high risk for infections. Depending on the severity of the complication, they can provide care to the same infant from two months up two years.
2. Critical Care Nurse
Critical care nurses tend to severely ill patients in intensive care units who suffer from life-threatening conditions. These nurses can work in several different departments such as the telemetry unit or emergency department.
3. Dialysis Nurse
Dialysis nurses are in charge of conducting peritoneal and hemodialysis treatments to patients with acute or chronic kidney diseases. They support and monitor patients throughout their dialysis and educate them on better lifestyle choices.
4. Nurse Anesthetist
Nurse anesthetists are in charge of administering anesthesia for surgical procedures or other medical purposes. Because they oversee patients that are receiving and recovering from anesthesia, becoming a nurse anesthetist requires a master degree, thorough clinical training, and passing a certification exam.
5. Pyschiatric Nurse
Nurses that care for patients with metal health conditions such as depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, or psychosis are psychiatric nurses. They are in charge of helping patients maintain or regain their coping mechanisms, administering treatments, and assessing mental health needs.
6. Pediatric Nurse
Pediatric nurses specialize in providing the correct care for children and adolescents. They carry out age-appropriate immunizations, developmental examinations or screenings, and play a big role in educating families.
7. Geriatric Nurse
Geriatric nurses treat the acute or chronic illnesses of elderly patients. They work with their families to maintain a specialized treatment plan with medication and therapies.
8. Oncology Nurse
Oncology nurses attend and monitor patients of all ages who are diagnosed with cancer. They administer chemotherapy and other medications, keep an eye on the varying physical changes of their patients, and give support to their patients/patient’s families.
9. Hospice/Palliative Nursing
Palliative nurses provide relief and comfort to patients who are in the final stage of their terminal illness. They work to alleviate the pain and contribute to a better quality of life for their patients, while allowing the family spend time together.
10. Operating Room Nursing
Nurses that care for patients before, during, and after their surgery are perioperative or operating room nurses. They prepare the patient for their surgical procedure, help in the operating room by maintaining sterile conditions and handling the necessary supplies, and monitor the patient after their surgery to prevent complications.
These are just a few of the fields you can specialize in as a nurse but there really is no limit to what you can do with a nursing degree. Many universities offer programs that help students earn specialized degrees and masters through short- term, condensed courses. In fact, CEU provides specialization nursing degrees in diagnostic imaging, radiotherapy, specialized nursing care, clinical trial monitoring, and neurological patient rehabilitation and care. The possibilities are endless!