Prompted by a flourishing need to educate and care for patients with chronic or life-threatening conditions, nearly 527,000 additional registered nurses (RNs) nationwide are expected to have already landed jobs by 2022. This marks a 19 percent increase in the number of nurses that were employed in 2012. In Los Angeles, registered nurses earn an average annual salary of nearly $70,000, according to current data. Experts say efforts are underway to recruit more pediatric nurses.
“With the continued evolution of drug-resistant diseases and new infections, our nurses will need to be on the front-line of learning, teaching and delivering new treatments,” said Andrée Mulia, a nurse recruiter at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. “Because we are caring for children that are more acutely ill, further specialty training and advanced education are needed and expected.”
How are you training pediatric nurses?
“We offer the Versant RN residency program that prepares them for work in an acute care environment. In the third quarter of 2015, we will introduce an RN transition program for nurses who are experienced in adult medicine and would like to enter a pediatric nursing role.”
What differentiates an admirable pediatric nurse?
“An exceptional pediatric nurse is a professional who has the passion for pediatrics and family centered care, and will be an advocate and change agent to deliver the best care for our children.”
How does a nurse lodge a sound career in pediatrics?
“Education is the key for a sustainable career in pediatrics. We are seeing more needs for advanced practice nurses and will continue to see a demand for nurses in such subspecialties as neonatal and oncology.”
What is your message to endeavoring pediatric nurses?
“I encourage them to become an active member in a pediatric organization, such as the Society of Pediatric Nurses, and participate in conferences the California Nursing Student Association holds. They should also volunteer in a pediatric hospital or for a mission to see if this career path suits them. Pediatric nurses are very special, and when you are around the children, you will know in your heart that you have found your calling.”
Sharon Raiford Bush is an award-winning journalist who covers topics of social interest in greater Los Angeles. Some news articles she has authored have been archived by the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC. Sharon also contributes to Examiner.com.