A career as a paediatric nurse offers diverse career paths

October 23, 2014

Article by Global Pre-Meds
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Gap Medics student Liam in the pediatric department, Iringa Regional Hospital, Tanzania As challenging as it may be, a career as a paediatric nurse can also be immensely rewarding as you watch your young patients bounce back to health. If you love spending time with and caring for children and you have a keen sense of humour and quick wit along with an abundance of patience, this is definitely a career path you should consider pursuing. 

What’s more, as a paediatric nurse, there are several diverse career paths that you can choose from. Here are some of the more common opportunities:


Paediatric floor nurse

Hospital floor nurses interact very closely with the patients. There is no exception in the case of paediatrics. Nurses who work in this field will have a chance to interact with their patients as well as their family members. As a paediatric floor nurse you will be responsible for taking care of the daily medical and personal needs of your paediatric patients during their stay in the hospital. This will include administration of medicines, regular check-ups and follow-ups. These nurses often become an emotional anchor for the patient and their parents during the most trying times.

Paediatric ER nurse

Paediatric emergency room nursing is one of the most challenging paediatric sub-specialties you can choose to pursue. All emergency rooms are fast-paced, high intensity and extremely challenging environments to work in and having to deal with children within this environment makes it even more challenging and heartbreaking. As a paediatric ER nurse you will often find yourself dealing with some of the worst-case scenarios and being emotionally strong is absolutely crucial to being able to stay objective and think efficiently so that your patient gets the best possible care under the circumstances. Paediatric ER nurses care for children with chronic illnesses, accident victims, abuse victims and mentally ill children and adolescents.

School nurse

As a school nurse your main responsibility would include keeping a check on the health of the students and treating them for minor injuries and illnesses. In addition, you will also have to develop and maintain an efficient communication channel with parents and hospitals in case of emergencies. School nurses are also increasingly being given a lot of responsibility when it comes to special needs children who are enrolled at a school.

Home healthcare paediatric nurse

Parents of disabled children, special needs children and children suffering from various diseases or illnesses often opt to have their children cared for at home instead of subjecting them to extended hospital stays. If the family can afford it, they get full time medical assistance in their houses so that the child can be comfortable and well cared for. Home healthcare paediatric nurses keep a constant check on the child, monitor them regularly, give them emergency medical support when needed and act as a liaison between the child and hospital.

Public health nursing

Nurses who opt to get into the public sector generally work in public clinics or part of programs that focus on women, infants and children. Working in this sector is great for anyone who is looking at the bigger picture and wants to save people who cannot afford insurance or expensive medicine.

Working with juvenile detention facilities or adolescent inpatient treatment facilities

Nursing professionals who work in juvenile detention facilities and other corrective centres take care of the medical, social and psychological needs of children in these facilities. The ability to stay calm in high-pressure situations is a crucial requirement in this role.