Age of a Nurse

Nurses General Nursing


Those of you who are RN's. Do you see people working as an RN until they are in their 60's or even close to 70 years old? I was wondering if it was a career that people can stay in that long. I am a high school teacher and the oldest that I have ever seen a HS teacher work is 50's occasionally into early 60's but that is rare. People do not teach for 40 years very often.

Do you see people being a RN for close to 40 years very often?

Also, would you say that nursing is a very emotional career.


Specializes in LTC.

I know an RN in her 70's and an LPN in her late 60's.

Specializes in LTC.

I've been seeing a lot of nurses working into their 60s and even early 70s. In this economy I don't think they have a lot of choice.

Specializes in Case mgmt., rehab, (CRRN), LTC & psych.

My friend's mother turns 60 years old at the end of this year and has been a nurse (LPN) since 1969. However, she has severe OA of the bilateral knees due to the physical nature of a hospital nursing career over the years. She now works the overnight shift at a nursing home because her body can no longer tolerate the fast pace of a hospital. She has no money saved for retirement, unlike most longtime schoolteachers.

In addition, ageism exists in many areas of nursing, although it cannot be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

Physical injury is common in bedside nursing and has disabled many nurses years before they could retire. Mental burnout is common in bedside nursing and has caused many nurses to switch careers. So, yes, there are barriers to a lengthy career as a nurse, but there are numerous people on these forums who have been in nursing for many years. It all depends on the luck of the draw.

Specializes in Electrophysiology, Medical-Surgical ICU.

my grandma is an rn and she is almost seventy she doesnt work full time though

There aren't many hospital bedside nurses over 55-ish, but there are some hardy souls. However, there are many nurses who have go on to other opportuinties that are easier to work until retirement age, - clinics, outpatient surgeries, home, hospice, businesses, sales, etc. A nursing education gives flexibity few others offer.

If you look around my unit, the majority are in their 20's and 30's. There is a strong but small group in their 40's, but only a couple older than that.

I have known older nurses move on to teaching positions and clinic jobs. A few retired.

Sure I know a few nurses that are older, but they are few.

Specializes in Critical Care, ED, Cath lab, CTPAC,Trauma.

NUrsing especially at the bedside is particularly physical. Nurses for the most part don't have tenure and we don't have retirement packages so we need to work until we cannot work anymore or we a dumped out to pasture!!!!

Specializes in ER, CCU, M/S, Oncology, Resp.

I know several nurses that are in their 60's and 70's and still working bedside. However, none of them are doing it because they want to. They are doing it because they have to. I am 47 right now, but expect I will fall into that "have to work" catagory when I am that age. I know my body will not do well doing bedside nursing at that age, so I am preparing for it now. I have started my own business and I am working on my NP. I will still be working at that age, but at least I won't be killing myself at the bedside.

62 this year. Have now worked 42 yrs as nurse. Several in my hospital older than me but some started a lot later than I did. 2 friends from ns still working full time though since having children I have been blessed to only have to work part time.

Specializes in ICU, ER.

I know an ER nurse and a SICU nurse both in their mid-sixties who work circles around the twety-somethings.

At my very small hospital (80 beds) almost all of the nurses are over 50! I feel like the odd one out in my 20' fact I think there are maybe only 7 or 8 RNs at my hospital around my age, everyone else is older. There are 2 nurses on my floor (med-surg / ortho) who are 66 and 67, both still working full-time 12 hr shifts (days). And most impressively, one nurse is 70 still working full-time days, 12 hrs shifts. She just celebrated her 50th year as being an RN last month. We threw a huge party for her and the entire hospital came, and there was a front page article in the newspaper about her. :-)

+ Add a Comment