A nursing specialty is the focus of an identified specific area within healthcare. It can include a specific patient population like pediatrics or geriatrics, a health condition such as cancer or diabetes, and specific areas of the body like the heart or digestive system. Prior to selecting a specialty, rotations to acquire hands-on experience are typically required. Once complete, nurses can pursue certifications in their desired specialties. With over 100 nursing specialties, nurses have many options to choose from when deciding upon a career path. We have compiled a few of the top nursing specialties.
1. Emergency Room Nurse
An emergency room nurse is typically the first health care professional that a patient will encounter. ER nurses work in a high pressure, fast- paced environment, and see a wide range of injuries and conditions. In addition to treating serious injuries and wounds, they are tasked with the responsibility of triaging patients based on the urgency of their conditions.
2. Dialysis Nurse
A dialysis nurse (or Nephrology nurse) cares for patients who have kidney failure and require dialysis. Dialysis nurses are responsible for overseeing patients during their dialysis treatment, provide education on kidney disease and chronic illnesses, and reassess patient once dialysis is complete.
3. Home Health Nurse
Home health nurses work with patients in the home setting who may have recently been discharged from the hospital, are elderly, chronically ill, or disabled individuals. Home health nurses may assist with daily tasks or focus on other tasks such as dressing wounds, administering medication, and taking vitals.
4. Neonatal Nurse
Neonatal nurses care for newborns, especially those who may have been born prematurely or with health complications. Other duties may include assisting with the birthing process, and providing education to parents on caring for their babies.