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Pediatric nursing is a specific field of nursing in which nurses care for infants, children, and adolescents. Practitioners of pediatric nursing are called pediatric nurses. Most nurses who end up working as pediatric nurses get their exposure to pediatric nursing during their undergraduate studies. Nurses interested in pediatric nursing complete field study hours in pediatrics upon degree completion. Like other nurses, pediatric nurses are able to give patients physical examinations, run diagnostic tests, draw blood samples, and measure vital signs.
The benefits of a pediatric nurse include:
- A vast understanding of pediatric specific issues
- A nurse familiar with childhood illnesses and infant concerns
- A nurse specialized in communicating and treating children
- A nurse educated in the latest pediatric treatments
Pediatric Nursing as a Career
Pediatric nurses and neonatal nurses can work in different environments. Some pediatric nurses work in doctor's offices. Others work in hospitals or health clinics. Pediatric nurses can also work in school clinics to provide health care for students and communities. Salary rates for pediatric nurses vary by location and education. The typical salary range for a pediatric nurse falls between $48,000-$68,000 a year, but can go above $100,000 for those with more experience.
Benefits of a Pediatric Nurse
Many parents prefer to take their children to pediatric offices because pediatric doctors and nurses are familiar with childhood illnesses and child development. Pediatric nurses have to connect with the children they work with to keep them calm and understand what is wrong. Many times young children are not able to communicate what hurts. Since pediatric nurses regularly work with younger patients they are usually able to communicate with small children and ask the right questions so that they can better understand the symptoms and get to the root of the problem.
Pediatric Nursing as a Teacher
Pediatric nurses must educate parents when their child has a health concern. They have to train parents how to take care of children who have been diagnosed with chronic conditions that require special care. Sometimes this means teaching parents about dietary changes or mediations. It might also include writing home care plans for families to use to take care of children with special needs.