Hospice / Palliative Care Nurse – Career and Education Profile

Not every disease can be cured. As a hospice or palliative care nurse, you’ll work with patients who are dying to provide the highest quality of live possible.

Job Responsibilities

Hospice nurses, also called palliative care nurses, work to ensure that a patient is as comfortable as possible. At this point, the patient is no longer treated, but is instead offered help with pain management. Your tasks may also include providing companionship, helping patients work with lawyers to prepare wills and otherwise prepare their estates, assisting mental health doctors who help patients deal with fear and depression, and more. You could work as a home health care nurse in this field for patients who are able to live out their lives at home or you could work in a hospice facility, which provides round-the-clock care for patients as they near death.

Salary and Career Options

Hospice nurses make around $50,000 annually, according to reports, but this figure depends on a number of factors including your location, your level of education, and whether you are a home health care nurse or work at a hospice facility. You can also make more money by specializing in a certain kind of illness, as some facilities are specifically set up to help patients who are all dealing with the same medical condition.

Educational Requirements

As a hospice LPN, you’re only required to go through a short program to earn certification, but you can make more money and work in better jobs if you go back to school to earn an associate of science in nursing or a bachelor of science in nursing. The hospice field is also a great place for nurse practitioners, a type of advanced practice nurse that requires you to have at least a master’s degree. As an RN with experience working in this field, you can choose to seek certification from the National Board for Certification of Hospice and Palliative Nurses if you wish.

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