5 Careers for a Master’s in Nurse Administration Graduate

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Updated August 4, 2020

MSN in Nursing Administration Jobs

  • Chief Nursing Officer
  • Patient Safety Manager
  • Nurse Management Consultant
  • Quality Improvement Director
  • Long-Term Care Administrator

Attending graduate school online or on-campus would prepare RNs for many different Master's in Nurse Administration careers. Nursing administration is an umbrella term used to describe managerial, MSN-level jobs with strategic leadership responsibility over health services operations. According to the Journal of Professional Nursing, MSN admission skyrocketed by 10.5 percent from 2011 as baccalaureates became more commonplace. Getting your foot into the administrative door leads to high pay, excellent benefits, and hirability in a booming market. The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects faster-than-average growth for 69,800 nursing administration openings and total U.S. employment of 422,000 by 2026. Nursing administration programs at CCNE-accredited colleges can take 12-36 months, but the payoff includes these great career possibilities.

1. Chief Nursing Officer

Chief Nursing Officer is an executive, C-suite position reserved for experienced master's graduates who can effectively administer a medical facility's entire nursing workforce. CNOs are responsible for hiring qualified nurses, planning professional development, ensuring regulation compliance, allocating budget resources, establishing patient care policies, and supervising departmental heads. Serving as the liaison between nurses and senior executives to enhance the health services provided leaves Chief Nursing Officers with a big median wage of $218,881 on Salary.com.

2. Patient Safety Manager

The Center for Patient Safety reports that up to 98,000 sick or injured people die unnecessarily from mistakes in America's hospitals each year, so this is a wide-scale, life-saving nurse administration career. Patient safety managers analyze clinical risks, investigate complaints, assist with legal claims after incidents, create action plans to prevent future mishaps, issue alerts to nursing staff, and help emergency preparedness initiatives. Protecting each soul's right to effective care gifts patient safety managers with an $82,857 average salary.

3. Quality Improvement Director

Preferring CPHQ certification, a quality improvement director is among the upper-level, Master's in Nursing Administration careers where clinical expertise is applied to enhance operational plans. Daily duties include performing department reviews, overseeing regulatory readiness, establishing performance goals, training personnel, promoting safety cultures, recommending better practices to executives, and heading the clients rights committee. According to Salary.com, quality improvement directors snag mean income of $110,299 by making nursing units as successful as possible.

4. Nurse Management Consultant

Unlike most nursing administration jobs, nurse management consultants are self-employed or third-party APRNs who are hired on contractual bases to propose ways health providers can improve service efficiency. They're busy conducting onsite analyses, reviewing economic records, surveying staff, brainstorming alternative policies, implementing operational changes, and testing for positive results. Nurse management consultants strategically bid for jobs and earn $91,383 yearly on average to rejuvenate clinical organizations for patients, profits, and progress.

5. Long-Term Care Administrator

Geriatrics RNs getting nursing administration master's degrees can coordinate the delivery of long-term care in nursing homes, rehabs, and assisted living centers since the Census Bureau records 49.2 million adults over 65 today. Long-term care administrators are specially licensed to manage residential services, hire round-the-clock staff, purchase facility supplies, plan activity calendars, oversee insurance billing, and abide elderly law regulations. LTC administration jobs present average wages of $109,008 on Salary.com for meeting older patients' physical and mental needs.

Advancing beyond a Bachelor of Science in Nursing could help you join the forefront of management, meet new licensing laws, become more clinically confident, increase your autonomy, and broaden your professional network. A Master's in Nurse Administration will also position you for other careers like ambulatory care manager, wellness director, discharge coordinator, clinical informatics administrator, diagnostic lab manager, and managed care executive.

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