Long Term Care Nursing + Salary, Careers & Jobs Outlook
Long term care nursing is a nursing specialty that works with patients who are in need of extended care as they are dealing with long term illnesses and disabilities. Long term care nurses specialize in the coordination of care of patients, performing nursing tasks particular to the elderly population, respond to changes in patient statues, and also provide mental and physical support to families and patients.
In the majority of long term care facilities, the long term care nurse works with doctors, social workers, speech pathologists, physical therapists, case managers and others to improve the care of the long term care patient.
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The long term care nurse works with patients across the entire life span with patients with various types of afflictions and diagnoses. Generally, most of the patients are elderly but there are exceptions to this every day. Many patients with which you will work have chronic diseases such as hypertension, heart disease, diabetes mellitus, chronic kidney problems, osteoarthritis and pulmonary disease. Some other patients may suffer from Alzheimer’s multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease and AIDS.
Typical tasks that you will complete include:
Vital sign checks
Enteral tube feedings
Exercises – range of motion
Administration of medicine
Where Oncology Nurses Work
Long term care nurses often work in nursing homes and retirement centers, assisted living facilities, long term acute care hospitals, adult day care facilities, skilled nursing facilities and more.
You may have one or more of the following job titles in your work as a long term care nurse:
Director of nursing services
Infection control nurse
Wound care nurse
Job Opportunities & Salary Outlook
The employment for registered nurses is going to grow by as much as 26% by 2020, states the Bureau of Labor Statistics, or BLS. One of the biggest reasons this explosive growth is happening is that the US population is aging, but living more active lives than ever before. People want to have more access to health care services as they age so that they can live more productive lives. This is going to be a major driver for nursing employment for the foreseeable future. It is expected that the area of long term care nursing will see particularly quick growth in demand.
Also, with the pressure to reduce health care costs, more patients are being moved out of hospitals as soon as they can and into longer term care facilities. We expect that this will boost demand for long term care nurses, too.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics states that the median wage for nurses is $64,700. Indeed.com reports that the average salary for a long term care nurse manager is $67,000.
Related Long Term Care Nursing Jobs
- Clinical Nurse Manager
- Case Management Nursing
- Clinical Manager Admin Nursing
- RN Hope
- RN Rn’
- RN Supervisor B
- LPN Charter House
- LPN Residential Shift Supervisor
- Medical Assistance Administrator
- Occupational Health RN CH
- Behavioral Health Manager
- Nurse Home Visitor
- RN Supervisor a
- Nurse Manager RN
- Public Health Specialist
Long Term Care Nursing Requirements
To become a nurse in this speciality, you first will need to earn at least a diploma or associate’s degree in nursing, or preferably a bachelor of science in nursing. Then, you will need to gain work experience with long term care patients. You should see at patient wards where long term care patients are, such as in your hospital or in a nursing home. You should gain at least a year of experience working with these types of patients.
After you have gained some experience with elderly patient care, then you can seek out specialized long term care nursing training. This could consist of a certificate program beyond your bachelor’s degree training. You may also be able to find a master of science in nursing program that specializes in long term care nursing.
Long Term Care Quick Links
Are you ready to earn your online nursing degree?
Whether you’re looking to get your pre-licensure degree or taking the next step in your career, the education you need could be more affordable than you think. Find the right nursing program for you.
RN-to-MSN online programs provide an accelerated route for registered nurses to earn their master of science in nursing degree. Our rankings highlight the top programs.
Nurses pursuing their doctor of nursing practice (DNP) degrees attain the highest level of education in the profession. DNP degree-holders become nurse practitioners (NPs), healthcare administrators, nurse educators, and researchers.
Want to become a nurse practitioner but don't have a bachelor's degree? No problem. Check out these top RN-to-MSN bridge programs.