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Career Definition for Geriatric Care Administrative Nurses
Geriatric care administrative nurses manage facility operations, implement policies, control finances, maintain supply levels, and hire and train new staff. They are responsible for the administrative and marketing aspects of the geriatric care facility, whether it is a nursing home, assisted living facility, or geriatric division of a hospital. With the aging Baby Boomer population and the advancements in medicine that are resulting in longer life expectancies, geriatric care is expected to be in high demand for the foreseeable future.
|Education||Master's degree in business or health administration|
|Job Duties||Manage facility operations, implement policies, control finances|
|Mean Salary (2017)||$92,750 (health services managers employed in nursing homes)|
|Job Growth (2016-2026)||20% (all medical and health services managers)|
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
There are several ways to advance to an administrative position in a geriatric facility; most paths require a master's degree in business or health administration or management. Since small facilities will often require a geriatric care administrative nurse to provide care to their patients in addition to administrative duties, a Registered Nurse license (RN) might be necessary for some positions. Many employers will require experience in administration before a candidate is considered for any managerial position.
Geriatric care administrative nursing responsibilities require innovative management skills that incorporate new medical and technological advancements. Strong team work, communication skills, and organization are key in any managerial position; in the medical and health care services, this can also mean long hours and on-call duty in times of emergency. Larger hospitals often hire a few administrators to manage operations of a hospital geriatric unit, while small private nursing homes may require their geriatric care administrative nurses to provide nursing care to the elderly in addition to maintaining the business-side of the facility.
Career and Economic Outlook
Occupational prospects for business managers of geriatric facilities are excellent, especially for managers with experience in the medical profession, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS, www.bls.gov). Annual pay varies according to experience and education. The mean annual salary among health services managers working in nursing home facilities in May 2017 was reported as $92,750 by the BLS, while those working in specialty hospitals, such as a geriatric hospital, earned a mean annual wage of $125,730 in the same year. According to the BLS, job growth for all medical and health services managers was projected to increase by 20% between 2016 and 2026.
Similar career options in this field include:
Health Services Manager
For those interested in hospital or nursing home administration who may not want additional nursing responsibilities, becoming a health services manager could be a good option. These managers oversee all aspects of a health care facility, such as running staff operations, tracking expenditures and profits, organizing medical records, preparing budgets, and making sure legal and organizational regulations are adhered to.
A bachelor's degree in a health administration or business field is how most get their foot in the door, but some larger companies require a master's degree and years of experience in the industry. Administrators of nursing home facilities must be licensed in all states, and some states require licensure of assisted-living facility administrators. The BLS predicts the employment of medical and health services managers will grow 20% during the 2016-2026 decade. In 2017, the BLS determined that these managers earned a mean annual salary of $111,680.
Licensed Practical Nurse
If providing nursing care to the elderly or other groups of patients sounds appealing, but the additional educational requirements of a nursing administrator are a turn-off, consider becoming a licensed practical nurse. Also called an LPN, a licensed practical nurse works under the supervision of a registered nurse and offers basic care such as dressing and bathing assistance, catheter insertion, IV set-up, dressing changes, and vital sign monitoring. To work as an LPN, earning a nursing certificate is necessary and all states require licensure by examination. BLS figures from May of 2017 reported the mean yearly income for LPNs at $45,710. This field of nursing, which also includes licensed vocational nurses, should grow by 12% between 2016 and 2026, as stated by the BLS.