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Five Ph.D Specializations You Can Choose From In The Nursing Field

Ph.D in Nursing Jobs

Getting your Ph.D in nursing degree opens many doors for you in your future. There are many specializations and jobs available to you if you decide to pursue your Ph.D degree. Here are five specialized fields and jobs you can break into with an Ph.D.

1. Family Nurse Practitioner: Family Nurse Practitioners provide care to individuals and families throughout their lives. They work as a specialized expert nurse under a physician. Much like a physician, family nurse practitioners can prescribe medicine, examine patients, work on disease prevention as well as treatment, and diagnose illnesses. Some family nurse practitioners can even open their own private practice and become an individual's primary health provider.

2. Gerontological Nurse Practitioner: Like geriatricians, gerontological nurse practitioners work mostly with elderly people. You can be an expert nurse practitioner and work in nursing homes, hospices, or open your own private practice. A gerontological nurse practitioner also diagnoses illness, prescribes medicine and treatment, and conducts exams. Gerontological nurses focus on pain management and illness prevention with primarily elderly patients.

Nurse Anesthetist: Nurse Anesthetists are responsible for administering anesthesia to patients before, during, and after surgery. These nurses are very valuable to surgeons and an intricate part of a patient's recovery and treatment of illnesses. Becoming a Nurse Anesthetist requires a rigorous educational and training path in which an MSN degree is only the beginning. A Nurse Anesthetist will have to be prepared for many situations, sometimes under great pressure, but Nurse Anesthetists are often the highest paid and most in demand of all nurses in today's healthcare job market. Nurse anesthetists are always needed in the emergency room, the operating room, and for outpatient procedures.

4. Nurse Practitioner: A more generalized position than gerontological or family nurse practitioners, these nurses work directly under a doctor to provide care to a wide range of patients. They can be the primary health care practitioner for all kinds of patients under a physician and a few run their own private practices. General nurse practitioners prescribe medicine, order lab tests and diagnose illnesses. 

5. Pain Management Nurse: Pain management nurses determine the source of the pain for patients with either chronic or acute pain, and work with other nurses to help manage it through medication and therapy. Pain management nurses also teach patients how to manage their pain through their medication or alternative methods. Pain management nurses will coordinate with other nurses to relieve pain in patients through often times elaborate, cooperative methods. Pain management nurses find work in hospitals, rehabilitation centers, and working with gerontological nurses in nursing homes. 

These are all things you can do with an Ph.D degree. Obviously this is not a comprehensive list, as there are many other careers you can pursue with this degree. Find a great program that will prepare you for a rewarding and rigorous career and see where it takes you. 

More Stories By Zack Jones

Zack is recent college graduate from the Arizona State University.