Registered nurses, or RNs, have a wide variety of career choices in health care and administration in the fast-growing health care industry. The demand for RNs is the highest among all occupations, according to the US Department of Labor. Subsectors with high demand include home health and nursing informatics.
The growing demand for registered nurses is being driven by aging baby boomers, an increase in lifestyle diseases and improvements in health care. Supplementary education opens up more choices to RNs. Opportunities are increasing in specialties ranging from neuroscience and genetics to HIV/AIDS and diabetes. Nurses with training in informatics are playing an important role in the information-driven health care environment. Those interested in teaching should obtain an advanced degree at the master's or doctoral level.
Older nurses seeking less physical work can find opportunities in administration, informatics, teaching and home-health settings. Entrepreneurial RNs are developing business opportunities in the home health care market by responding to the needs of a health conscious society that is living longer and requiring lighter health care services. As part of this trend, a booming health information market is increasing demand for dietitians and preventive health specialists. Related positions include holistic nurse, hospice nurse and managed care nurse.