There’s so much more to nursing than just daily life at a hospital. While most RNs start their career working in a hospital, nursing offers a huge variety of career opportunities – and some are more well-known than others.
In this article, we’ll take a look at 6 of the most obscure nursing jobs on the planet – jobs that even some nurses don’t know about! Take a look, and see some of the most interesting places that your RN can take you!
- Nursing Informatics
Of all the fields listed in this article, nursing informatics is growing the most quickly. Nursing informatics is sort of a blend of IT and nursing, so it’s a very attractive field for nurses who are computer-savvy and enjoy working with technology.
Nurses who work in the informatics field generally troubleshoot problems with medical software, create process documentation, educate other nurses in the use of technology, and supervise tech monitoring systems.
Generally, nursing informatics will require a degree in nursing, as well as an MSN in Nursing Informatics. But that hard work pays off – the median for a nursing informatics specialist is somewhere around $80,000 a year!
- Legal Nursing Consultant
Nurses interested in the field of law can become certified as Legal Nursing Consultants (LNCs). Usually, these nurses work in the field of lawsuits and worker’s compensation cases, reviewing these cases and providing medical expertise to lawyers and their clients.
Often, legal nursing consultants function sort of like an in-house medical expert, explaining complicated medical topics to lawyers, and helping legal professionals interpret charts and understand common medical terminology.
While a certificate isn’t always required to become a legal nursing consultant, many law firms require certification by an accredited educational institution, as this ensures that a prospective LNC has an adequate grasp of the basics of case law.
- Cruise Ship Nurse
If you want every day to feel like a vacation, you could consider becoming a cruise ship nurse! Cruise ships can often hold thousands of people, and travel over water for days at a time – and this means that in-house medical expertise is almost always required. Generally, a cruise ship will employ at least one medical doctor, and usually employ several cruise ship nurses.
Cruise ship nurses enjoy a very diverse workload. Issues can range from simple first-aid and wound cleansing to treating diabetic travelers, or even issues like heat exhaustion, sunstroke, and other issues that are common cruise ships.
And while cruise ship nurses usually don’t make more money than hospital nurses, there are certainly quite a few benefits. Cruise ship nurses get free room and board and usually work in shifts that are several months long – with multiple weeks of paid vacations after each shift.
- Camp Nurse
If you love the outdoors, you could consider becoming a camp nurse. Most summer camps, wilderness camps, and retreats have a nurse on hand to deal with sick campers, minor injuries, and basic triage.
This work is seasonal, so it’s quite popular with school nurses who are looking to make a bit of extra money, and it doesn’t usually require any kind of specialized experience or certification.
And while most camp nurses don’t exactly rake in the cash – most camp nurses make around $20-$30/hour – many nurses enjoy the opportunity to live a more relaxed lifestyle, and enjoy the great outdoors!
- Flight Or Transport Nurse
In some rural areas, normal emergency medical services are unavailable, or too slow. Lengthy ambulance rides, helicopter transport, and transportation of patients by plane often requires a nurse to be on-hand, in order to take care of issues that EMS personnel cannot deal with.
Ground transport nurses do not require specialized certifications, but most hospitals prefer that flight nurses be certified as a CFRN – a Certified Flight Registered Nurse. Generally, transport nurses can expect to make around $63,000 a year, although experienced CFRNs can expect to make quite a bit more.
- Forensic Nurse
Are you obsessed with true crime shows like Bones and CSI?
Well, the lifestyle of a forensic nurse isn’t quite as glamorous as it’s made out to be in Hollywood – but if you want to fight crime, catch bad guys, and enjoy an always-interesting career path, you could consider becoming a certified forensic nurse!
Forensic nurses are often used in cases involving sexual assault, abuse, and other injury cases, and they provide expert analysis and testimony both in and outside of the courtroom.
Generally, forensic nursing requires experience in caring for trauma victims, both physically and psychologically. And though there are no specific certification requirements, most forensic nurses become SANE (Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner) certified when beginning their careers, and some nurses may also become certified death investigators.
Though this may seem like a lot of work, you’ll be well-compensated – the average salary of a forensic nurse is around $80,000 a year.
In Need Of A Change? Check Out These Awesome Nursing Careers!
We know that working in a hospital can lead to some serious burnout issues. So whether you’re seriously considering a career change, or are just curious about other opportunities, these 6 totally obscure nursing jobs are a great place to start! Don't forget to check out the latest job openings at ModernNurse Jobs!
This article was republished with permission from SCRUBS Magazine.
Has anyone started their own body contouring business. Need help
I have done several jobs you mentioned including informatics, camp, transport, and got my legal nurse consulting. The one job not mentioned but very interesting and requiring the longest training period and good nursing experience is clinical documentation integrity specialist. Especially great during pandemic. I work completely remotely.
Hello, how did you get training to become a clinical documentation integrity specialist? This sounds very interesting to me. Thank you!
Please tell us more. What is a clinical documentation integrity specialist, and what do they do?
Corrections nursing has gained popularity. However, go where another Nurse recommends or works. These facilities can have very poor medical and dental care. Staffing in Officers can also be the bottom of the barrel.
So interesting as far as mental illness and self injurious behaviors are concerned. Just be careful of your choice of Prison or jail….bjv RN (MSN)
I work as a Research Nurse helping to care for patients who participate in clinical trials sponsored by pharmaceutical companies. There is a lot of detail involved and paperwork but you still have that patient contact most of us went into nursing initially for. Hours are much better than hospital nursing with no weekends or holidays and no on-call!
I work as a RN Medical Record analyst as a subcontractor – I review medical records for fraud, waste and abuse. Love it!
Where would I look for such a job listing?
Yaya. That sounds really interesting. Do you know if additional help is needed through your company? Maybe you could get a referral bonus. 🙂 If you’d be willing to contact me, my email is [email protected]. Thank you! Hope
Hello, how did you get your training to do this work? This sounds like something I would enjoy. Thank you.
I work as a preauthorization specialist for the physician services t a hospital group. There are over 50 doctors in the group and I set up the program. With a couple of coding specialists working with me we do the preauths for surgeries and procedures, I do mental health preauths and all medication preauths since I’m the only one with meds background. Other practices in the area have now started their own programs as it is more cost effective and time effective than having each nurse do their own auths.
I worked at an Electrical plant as the Safety Assistant. Rode around on a bike or golf cart. Had to wear a hard hat. Took injured people to Dr visits, ran first aid station along with the Safety Director, did safety inspections. Most interesting job I ever had.
I found the same thing. My husband is from Manchester UK. I can’t even with there as a nurse unless I return to school there for a lot more class for a lot more clinical hours. Unless I work for an American company. If you find a cruise line that is flagged out of the US and very few do you Would qualify
I looked into cruise ship nursing and was shocked to find the quals. The cruise ships I investigated required many accreditations and they were European standards not American ones.
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