Family nurse practitioners have valuable experience and skills that make them flexible to take up other career options outside traditional care settings. Shortage of nurse practitioners can lead to burnout, forcing some family nurse practitioners to step back from the hospital or clinic settings to pursue their interests and passion.
Fortunately, FNPs can follow their teaching, writing, and traveling passion while still handling various duties of a nurse practitioner. Experienced or retired nurse practitioners looking for secondary careers should consider the following career options.
Also read: 4 Reasons to Choose a Career in Nursing
1. Start a Mobile Clinic
Low-income and minority communities often have disproportionate access to medical services. Family nurse practitioners can make an impact in such areas by running mobile health clinics. Ideally, mobile clinics target vulnerable communities by providing plenty of health services, including primary care, treatment of common conditions, screenings, and more.
Mobile clinics can expand their efforts by partnering with nonprofits and community organizations like food pantries to allow the vulnerable population access to more resources beyond the health services. Fortunately, nurse practitioners can easily raise funds to support this dream through sourcing grants, service contracts, and commercial financing.
2. Skilled Nursing Care Facilities and Long-Term Care Facilities
Family nurse practitioners who enjoy working with patients should consider working in skilled nursing facilities or long-term care facilities/nursing homes. Skilled nursing centers admit aging patients who have been discharged from hospital settings but need supportive and rehabilitative care before returning home or admission to long-term care centers.
Typical services provided in skilled nursing facilities include physical rehabilitation, prompt medical treatment, and occupational therapy. A major challenge faced by aging patients is dementia and the risk of falling. Skilled nursing care nurses should help patients improve their muscle strength and regain their ability to live independently before being discharged.
If you prefer working with such patients for an extended period and at a slower pace, you should consider switching fully to long-term care facilities. NPS working in long-term care centers should also be prepared to help their patients complete their activities of daily living. This includes taking a bath, sitting down, random walks, cleaning, and other ADLs. However, you should consider specializing in gerontology.
Also read: Pros and Cons of Nursing Career
3. Convenient Care Clinics
Most chain stores, such as Walmart and Target, have a designated area for clinics and other health-related service provisions that family nurse practitioners can take advantage of. Unlike the busy hospital setting, convenient care clinics aren’t busy, but you will have to provide a wide range of services.
Common services include treating minor injuries, immunizations, colds and fevers, and flu shots. Convenient store clinics are becoming popular because of their convenience, affordable services, and low wait times.
4. Nurse Researcher
According to the BLS, the average growth rate for nurse practitioners will surpass the normal growth rate in a few years. Besides compiling such statistics, nurse researchers are tasked with developing and implementing specific studies that explore various aspects of illnesses to improve patient outcomes based on report findings. Like other studies, medical research is funded by government grants and nonprofits.
Family nurse practitioners can also explore their careers as health coaches, school nurse practitioners, cannabis clinic managers, health writers, and other options. However, you should be certified as a nurse practitioner to leverage these flexible work settings and specializations.
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