Are you thinking about exploring a new nursing specialty? Or have your students been asking which specialties to choose in their future careers? According to Scrubs Magazine, three poised for future growth are informatics, telemedicine, and geriatrics. Why are these the ones to watch? Let's take a look at each.
In today's high-tech hospitals, informatics nurses are indispensable in helping create and analyze software to help make nurses more effective and better trained. A recent article in Scrubs Magazine reported that,
"If you’re an informatics nurse, you could find yourself on a typical day observing and interviewing other nurses to determine what their needs are and help the computer programs make their lives easier. You would also assist in deciding how computers help the patient to receive better care."
With technology growing at an unprecedented pace, nurses and students need to understand informatics and its impact on the health care system. Combining the best-selling text, Nursing Informatics and the Foundation of Knowledge, Second Edition, by Dee McGonigle and Kathleen Mastrian with exciting online learning activities and animations that bring difficult informatics concepts to life, Navigate eFolio: Nursing Informatics and the Foundation of Knowledge is the complete online solution for nursing informatics courses.
While not listed yet as an American Nurses Credentialing Center specialty, telemedicine is crucial for many patients who live far from care centers. With the Affordable Care Act adding more than 30 million new patients to the health care system, telemedicine will continue to grow, especially as the Internet brings the potential for more interactive connections between nurses and patients.
Health Technology Literacy: A Transdisciplinary Framework for Consumer-Oriented Practice by Maryalice Jordan-Marsh examines the wide-range of resources used by health consumers to inform and support their decisions around their own health care. It offers strategies for building supportive social networks online or via cell phone, while analyzing the trend that consumers are proactively seeking the health care information they feel they deserve.
As more Americans age, geriatric nurses will be in more demand than ever. Scrubs Magazine writes that,
"The baby boomers aren’t getting any younger, and they will require nurses with specialized knowledge to help them. If you want a specialty that will be hungry for professionals, and one that will allow you the special role of helping the aging through the last years of their lives, you should become certified as a geriatrics nurse."
Based on the Core Competencies set forth by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) and the John A. Hartford Foundation Institute for Geriatric Nursing, Gerontological Nursing: Competencies for Care, Second Edition by Kristen L. Mauk is a comprehensive reference on caring for older patients. New to this edition are chapters on promoting healthy aging, managing dementia, leadership, and end of life care.
What do you think of these growing specialties? Are there more you would add to the list?