Gerontology Nursing - Geriatric Nurse Practitioner Career
Geriatric Nurse: A Geriatric Nurse is a registered nurse who specializes in Gerontology. This means that a Geriatric Nurse provides healthcare to geriatric or elderly individuals. As a high proportion of the population is becoming older, Geriatric Nurses will be treating increasing numbers of patients. This is why a career as a Geriatric Nurse will be in high demand for the years to come. Registered Nurses who have graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing (BSN) will have studied Gerontological nursing as part of their baccalaureate program. Most BSN programs also have additional elective subjects in Gerontology that an undergraduate can choose to study.
The main duties of a Geriatric Nurse include:
- Providing healthcare to the residents of long term care units and nursing homes.
- Educating and supporting the families of elderly patients.
- Building relationships with the patient and his/her family.
- Assessing the patient’s ability to do routine daily tasks.
- Working with patients with Dementia and other illnesses effecting the elderly.
- Diagnosing and managing diseases.
- Promoting good health.
Where they work: Geriatric Nurses can work in Hospitals, Long Term Care Units, Nursing Homes, Community Care, Home Health, Outpatient Clinics. Today as many of the elderly choose to stay at home there is a demand for Geriatric Nurses to work in Outpatient Clinics and Home Health.
Qualifications: Gerontological Nurse Practitioner (GNP) Certification programs are available to Registered Nurses who hold a Master’s Degree or higher from a Gerontological Nurse Practitioner program. Along with theory and an examination, there is also a minimum number of supervised clinical hours (usually 500) that must be included in your program. The Commission on the Collegiate of Nursing Education (CCNE) and the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) offer accreditation for these courses.
Typical GNP programs include modules in: Health Assessment, Pathophysiology, Pharmacology, Disease Prevention, Health Promotion and Disease Diagnosis and Management.
Find a Nursing School near you: Use the Further Your Career zip code search box, to find schools and colleges in your area that offer nursing programs.
Below is a list of some of the various types of medical nurses / assistant nurses: