Nurses, also known as registered nurses, take care of the sick, treat injuries and give emotional support to patients and their families. Daily activities of the registered nurse may include helping doctors examine and treat patients, administering tests to patients, submitting these tests to laboratories, providing patients and their families with instructions on how to take care of themselves, which can include proper nutrition, exercise and taking medications.
Nurses can focus on one type of treatment or one type of medical problem. Some registered nurses help doctors during surgery, while others work in emergency rooms or intensive care units. Many nurses work in doctors’ offices where they administer medical tests, take patients’ vital signs, dress wounds, do lab work and perform administrative duties.
Types of jobs for registered nurses in Los Angeles can vary — from home health nurses going to people’s homes to help patients to flying in helicopters to get to patients in an emergency. With advanced training, a registered nurse can become a nurse practitioner and prescribe medication like physicians. Nurse midwives can help women give birth.
Registered Nurses in Los Angeles who work in a hospital environment help the sick and often deal with medical emergencies, which can be very stressful. Nurses in hospitals often help many patients at once and spend a lot of time standing and walking. Safety is an issue for registered nurses because they care for people with diseases, move patients frequently, as well as come into contact with radiation (x-rays) and chemicals. Because patients need 24-hour care, hospital nurses often work nights, weekends and holidays. There is flexibility to the nursing profession as many registered nurses are able to work part-time.
How do you prepare to become a nurse in California? Nurses must graduate from an LA nursing school or other nursing school in Southern California. It takes about two years of college to finish an associate degree in nursing and about four years to complete a bachelor’s degree in nursing. A diploma in nursing usually takes about three years. Deciding what type of training to choose is important. Some careers are open only to nurses who have a bachelor’s degree. Nursing education includes clinical training, where nursing students train with registered nurses in a hospital or other healthcare environment. Nurses study anatomy, chemistry, nutrition, psychology, theory and nursing. Upon graduation, nurses must pass a test to obtain a permanent nursing credential to practice in California. Registered nurses take courses every few years to keep their skills current.
Nurses should be caring and nurturing. They also need to be good at identifying problems and remembering details. Nurses need to work well with doctors and patients. Many nurses also supervise assistants and other workers.
In Los Angeles, with experience and advanced coursework, registered nurses can become head nurses or nursing managers. Some nurses move into the business side of health care and find work in large companies in healthcare planning, and marketing.
To prepare for a nursing job in Los Angeles, prospective nursing students should take biology and other science courses. Communication skills are critical, so students need to be proficient in reading and writing. Mathematics is also important as nurses need to account for doses of medicines for patients.
How does a nursing job pay in Los Angeles as well as in the United States? The average half of all registered nurses earned between $ 47,710 and $ 69,850 in 2006. The lowest-paid 10 percent earn less than $ 40,250. The highest paid 10 percent made more than $83,440. (Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics-BLS)
Registered Nurses are the largest occupation in the healthcare industry. There are about 2.5 million nurses in the United States as of 2006, with about 60% employed by hospitals and 20% working part-time.
What does the future hold for nursing? The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects jobs for registered nurses to grow much faster than the average for all occupations through 2016. Many new jobs will be available for people who want to be nurses. Hospitals will need nurses, but many new nurses working in home health clinics, doctors’ offices and nursing homes will also be needed.
For more information about nursing careers in Los Angeles, Go to www.LANursingDegree.com