How to Become a Geriatric Nurse

A geriatric nurse is a person that works with the elderly in a medical setting. If you enjoy helping your grandmother or the people at the senior center, you may be a perfect fit for a geriatric nursing job. It only takes a few years to become a geriatric nurse, and this career is in high demand at the moment. You should have no trouble finding work if you decide to pursue this profession. Here is a guide explaining how to become a geriatric nurse so you can start your career as soon as possible.

Step 1 – Determine If Geriatric Nursing Is Right for You

Before you take the time to actually become a geriatric nurse, you need to figure out if this is a good career fit for you. Geriatric nurses have to take on some less-than-appealing job duties in their day to day lives because of the general needs of the elderly. You have to be willing to take on those kinds of challenges, should they come up in your work. Here is a general overview of what you may do as a geriatric nurse:

  • Provide emotional support
  • Prepare walkers and wheelchairs
  • Monitor vital signs
  • Give sponge baths
  • Educate families
  • Control dietary intake
  • Clean bed pans
  • Change adult diapers
  • Answer questions
  • Administer medications

If you feel you can muster the courage to do all of that and more, you can proceed to the rest of this guide.

Step 2 – Get an Education

You will need to get a nursing degree with a minor in geriatrics. This could be an ADN, BSN, MSN, or anything else you want. Just note that higher degrees will probably lead to better paying jobs, so you might want to invest in the best education you can get. Your schooling will teach you about medical terminology and processes that you will refer to on a daily basis. Pay attention in class, and you will be able to do well in the job itself.

Step 3 – Get Certified

You need some kind of certification to verify your skills as a geriatric nurse. Knowing how to become a geriatric nurse won’t mean anything if you don’t have the credentials to get a job. Check out some of the certification programs below to enhance your hirability in the future.

  • Advanced Cardiac Life Support
  • American Nurses Credentialing Center
  • Basic Life Support
  • Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
  • Critical Care
  • Family Practice
  • Licensed Practical Nurse
  • Licensed Vocational Nurse
  • Registered Nurse

Step 4 – Find a Job as a Geriatric Nurse

Geriatric nurses have the chance to work just about anywhere, and they are always in high demand. Thus you should have no trouble finding work in this profession, should you choose to follow the guide above. Here are just some of the many employers you could apply with as a geriatric nurse:

  • Long-Term Care Facilities
  • Rehabilitation Clinics
  • Home Health Care Offices
  • Hospitals
  • Residential Care Facilities
  • Nursing Homes
  • Health Care Service Providers
  • Assisted Living Facilities

Now that you know how to become a geriatric nurse, all you have to do is figure out if you actually want to go through with the process. If you do, you need to start looking for schools that can help you reach your career goals. In no time at all, you could have the job of your dreams and all the rewards that come along with it.