UNITED STATES—Understaffed and overworked, nowadays it’s easy to take a look at a medical system and think that everyone involved in the field is underappreciated. However, even during regular times, when the system is not suffocated by a worldwide pandemic, nurses tend to get the short end of the stick. 

Sure, there are pros and cons, like in any job, but when times get tough, nurses are the core of the medical system. So, let’s take a look at both the ups and downs of being a Registered Nurse (RN) in America: 

Wide Range of Opportunities

As an RN, you have the possibility to move around the country with the job, due to the travel nursing current. For instance, an RN can find a wide range of travel nursing jobs in California, that may pay better than your current position in a different state.

In fact, California, Massachusetts, and Hawaii are the states where nurses earn the highest salary. 

Plus, as a traveling nurse, you have the chance to experience different work environments and work with a bunch of interesting specialists in the medical field. Overall, if you are passionate about the job, being a nurse puts you right in the middle of things which is a fantastic chance for learning and growth.

A Lot of Background Work 

Sure, nurses are always by the doctor’s side, offering tools and administering treatments. However, their job extends way beyond the treatment options. Nurses are the ones who provide emotional support and comfort to patients and relatives going through difficult times. 

Nurses are the empathic face of the medical system because they are the ones closest to their patients. Still, this takes a toll on one’s mental and physical health if it’s not properly addressed. Sadly, this happens more often than not due to staff shortage and long hours. 

Increased Job Flexibility

If you don’t want to fully embrace being a nurse, you have plenty of flexibility. You can have a regular job and work part-time as a nurse. Furthermore, you can also choose your shifts and change the schedule according to your needs.

This is true because nurses are needed 24/h, so if you prefer to work the night shift, you only need to ask. 

The Credit Goes Elsewhere

While it’s true that the doctor is directly responsible for the treatment of the patient (they are the ones specifying the doses and the medication), nurses are the ones who administer it and have the most direct contact with the patient. 

However, at the end of the day, when the patient gets better, the credit goes to the doctor alone. Sure, some people will remember your care and empathy, but to the scientific community and the world, the credit doesn’t go to the RNs.

It’s Not Boring

If you don’t like the idea of sitting in an office all day long and looking at a screen, then you may be a good fit for a nurse. As an RN, the job is never the same. Even with two patients with the same diagnosis, the journey to healing is completely different. 

Plus, you get to work with specialists in a wide range of medical fields. You’re also at the heart of the field, learning about new discoveries, seeing how new technologies get to help people and make their lives better. 

Key Takeaway 

Nurses may have it a bit more rough than some medical specialists, but it is a highly rewarding job that always finds ways to amaze you. It’s also a never-ending journey for improvement, with new challenges every day. 

Nurses may be underappreciated in certain situations, but the same can be said about everyone. It depends on the point of view.