Nursing as We Age.....

  1. I was curious as to what the career plans are for nurses on this section of the forum. These are concerns because aging is enividable and some of us don't have enough retirement money to retire.

    I am an older student and was wondering what we can do as RN's later in our career?

    Are we washed up at 65?

    What type of work can we do as we get older?


    thanks very much...
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  2. 33 Comments

  3. by   MAISY, RN-ER
    My hope is to have a private venture involving my family. I have a business background and am an RN(second career), my daughter is in school for nursing and business, my son is a pharmacy major with a minor in business, and my husband has his MBA in business. Between all of us, I am hoping we have some good ideas. Healthcare is, and will be, major business. It's just finding the right thing.

    I also hope that in the next few years I'll be able to complete my MSN giving me the option to teach...I am also hoping my husband takes that option. I wouldn't mind having my summers off(till we get something going). I could deal with approximately $60k a year to teach nursing theory-won't kill my back or risk my license.

    Nice dreams, but everyone has to have some goal. For now I am in the ER. Don't forsee 20+years of that!
    Maisy
  4. by   llg
    I think this is a wise question -- one that more people should be asking. I have seen a lot of "older" students graduate only to realize a year or two later that their bodies just can't handle the physical labor of a hospital staff nurse job. When they began their education, they were encouraged by people who said, "Go for it ... You're only as old as you feel ... etc." with good intentions. But they didn't deal with the physical reality of sore feet and knees and hips and shoulders etc. They also didn't plan to get the additional education they would need to qualify for jobs away from the bedside. So... some of them leave nursing.

    Even nurses who entered the field as young adults fail to plan for a career as they age. I think a lot of them assume that they will be able to retire at 40 or 50 before it become a big problem. They don't think that things like divorce, widowhood, kids college bills, their own retirement needs, etc. will ever actually happen to them. "Someone will come along to take care of them in their later years." Reality is that for most of us, our retirements will be funded by the work we do throughout our lives and we will need to work at least into our 60's.

    I have spent most of my career in CNS and Staff Development roles and I am still feeling every one of my 52 years in my knees and hips. I am also getting worn down by the political stresses of my current job. I am hoping that I will be able to switch to part time employment and/or a university teaching position for the last few years of my career. My dream is to begin teaching full time (classroom only, no clincial undergrad clinicals) in a couple of years to revitalize my career and then switch to part time at age 62 to ease into retirement. It would mean a drop in income, but I am optimist that I could swing it financially.
  5. by   NurseCherlove
    Quote from MAISY, RN-ER
    My hope is to have a private venture involving my family. I have a business background and am an RN(second career), my daughter is in school for nursing and business, my son is a pharmacy major with a minor in business, and my husband has his MBA in business. Between all of us, I am hoping we have some good ideas. Healthcare is, and will be, major business. It's just finding the right thing.

    Maisy
    WOW Maisy, I think that is an awesome idea - to combine the loyalty of your family with such complimentary skillsets!

    That's like me and my fiancee. He's a GI doc and my goal is to become a Cardiac NP. I just love cardiac. But I still ever now and then play around with the idea of him just starting his own practice with me as his NP (yeah, I would bite the bullet and do GI). I still find myself sometimes wondering how he could somehow combine GI and Cardiology to be profitable with growth potential.
  6. by   leslie :-D
    Quote from NurseCherlove
    I still find myself sometimes wondering how he could somehow combine GI and Cardiology to be profitable with growth potential.
    bariatrics.
    'tis the way of the future.

    leslie
  7. by   TonyFl
    bariatrics???- bariatrics is the branch of medicine that deals with the causes, prevention, and treatment of obesity.bariatrics is the branch of medicine that deals with the causes, prevention, and treatment of obesity.

    how do you see yourself fitting into that area?
  8. by   TonyFl
    Wow...good response llg.

    What about Home health....is that too much for RN as they age?
  9. by   ebear
    Go Maisy!!!!!!!!
  10. by   traumaRUs
    I became an RN at 34 and realized about 10 years later that in order to remain in nursing, I had to further my education. So...off to school I went. In the end, I have an MSN in nursing (concentration in management and leadership) and a post-MSN adult health CNS. So...I can teach and/or be an APN in my state.

    Education is all about expanding your options as we age.
  11. by   Nurse_Diane
    Quote from earle58
    bariatrics.
    'tis the way of the future.

    leslie

    Yes, unfortunately though.....
  12. by   NurseCherlove
    Quote from earle58
    bariatrics.
    'tis the way of the future.

    leslie
    Hmmm. Not a bad thought atall. He always did say that if he did not do GI, he would've liked to be a plastic surgeon, helping people to look and feel better about themselves.
  13. by   Shantas
    After I turn 65 I dont think I would want to think about nursing anymore!! My hubby said I just need to work hard 5 more years, then I could just be a stay at home mom!! He has been counting that since 2005....it is 2007 now but he still says 5 more years....I told him he needs to subtract some years from it.....!!
    So I hope by the time I turn 65, I will be able to save enough money so that I can say good bye to nursing career and enjoy my life
  14. by   P_RN
    I retired at 55 on permanent disability. Feeling pretty sorry for myself I discovered there are people who buy computers and don't know what to do with them. Tee hee I do. I can set themup wires and all and demo most of their programs. My neighbor and I do that. She's 40 years younger so she crawls with the wires and I do the upper part.

    There are also people who can type (kind of) but not in APA style or with adequate grammar and syntax. In college it was $1 page. Now it's been hit by inflation. I used to type 60-70 on a manual typewriter. Maybe 1 error. NOW I have a computer, with spellcheck, a thesaurus and a dictionary. I have typed a bunch of medical reports that transcriptionists send me when they get overwhelmed. FTP is good for that. Saves gas too. I did some medical coding but YUK didn't like it. And the beautiful thing is 33 years ago when the hospital FORCED me into the retirement system...I acceded. So now I can type for fun money or not.

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