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I think you should switch to a medical tech program if you only want to do lab work.
The only lab work I can think of that involves a nursing degree would be like if you were involved in research, maybe? But even if you wanted to do that, it would require a post-graduate degree like a Ph. D. And even then, I'm not positive.
How interesting, I am debating between the two careers as well. I really think I would enjoy lab work better, but those jobs seems to be far and few between. However, there seem to be multiple RN jobs. Right now I am just getting my pre-reqs done (since the pre-reqs are the same for both programs) and am going to apply to the RN program, and the Histotechnician program and see what happens! Good luck!
A community college will have a lab tech program. You can also get your bachelors degree in biochem and work in a lab. Nursing is about caring for patients and treating them, you won't be able to work in a lab with a nursing degree.
What you have to consider in choosing a career, are your strengths and weaknesses. Nursing, whether bedside or not requires frequent contact with people: patients &family, doctors, managers. Consider this, if you work in a inpatient hospital setting you will have to assist your patients with cleaning of body fluids. Nowadays only really sick people stay in hospitals, the rest go through ambulatory care or home health. Good communication skills are essential in nursing and it's a high paced environment. In a lab setting you are working mostly with things, you have to be organized , usually there already is a system that you have to follow to keep organized. In nursing , you are handed 3-7 patients,depending on what area you are in and you have to prioritize to choose which patients need more attention, meds need to be handed out at different times, each day is different.
Every day you wake up to go to work , you want to be happy doing what you do! Do what fits you better. Good luck in your decision.