There are four different public health nurse jobs: individual counseling and support, managing vaccination and treatment programs, teaching, and working for a government agency. A public health nurse works with a broad range of public and private sector clients to reduce diseases, educate, and protect the community. The role of a public health nurse is central to maintaining a low mortality rate in a community, stopping the spread of disease, and avoiding crisis situations.
In order to qualify for public health nurse jobs, you will need to become a licensed nurse. This requires successful completion of a registered nurse (RN) program and examination. Many nurses return to school to obtain additional certification in public health after five to seven years' experience working in hospitals and other health care facilities.
One of the most important public health nurse jobs is to provide individual counseling. Clients are typically referred to this service through a hospital, social worker, or long-term care facility. The counseling is targeted to the client and is focused on specific challenges. For example, many maternity departments will refer clients with their first child to the public health nurse. The nurse can schedule a series of home visits to provide assistance and support during the first six to eight weeks after the baby comes home.
There are a broad range of public health nurse jobs available in disease prevention. Vaccination programs are critical to disease prevention and reduction in the community. In addition to these programs, there are various public health nurse jobs available in clinics focused in specific communities. These clinics focus on local health issues. They can be found in areas with high poverty rates, homelessness, and other risk factors.
There is a wide range of public health nurse jobs available in teaching. Using his or her presentation skills, they can work in community centers and with local organizations to spread information and education. Many community centers and associations offer health related courses to meet the needs of the community.
In order to become an instructor, many professionals complete a certificate program in adult education. Learning the most effective way to teach adults can be a huge help when making this career transition. Bridging the information gap is critical to maintaining healthy communities and improving people's health.
Many public health nurse jobs are found in social services related government agencies. The nurse is typically responsible for working with the social worker and other members of the health services team to respond to crisis situations, reduce spread of disease, and combat health issues in the community.