A career in public health nursing is an exciting career pathway because it provides the opportunity for a nurse to work in a variety of fields and specializations, offering services for the benefit of the community while still earning a good wage.
Public health nursing involves working with the population. This is in contrast to the typical nursing practice which involves a close relationship with patients. The community is broken down into smaller units and a public health nurse fits into virtually all these segments. They tackle issues like contraception, cancer, immunization, HIV/AIDS, STDs, and drug abuse. Generally, public health nurses work with the population to raise awareness, improve safety and implement intervention programs aimed at improving overall health and well being
Where Public Health Nurses Work
- International Agencies & Volunteer/ Non-governmental Agencies
Public health nurses are highly sought after in these fields. United Nations Organization such as WHO, UNICEF and others like Action Against Hunger, Doctors Without Borders, Red Cross and others require the service of public health nurses in order to implement their programs and achieve their set objectives.
- Government Agencies And Health Department
Another important area where public health nurses work is in government agencies and health departments where they study and analyze health patterns in order to develop mechanisms and intervention programs that reduce hazards, prevent disease, raise awareness and promote health.
- Community clinics
As established earlier public health nurses work with communities and community health centers. This provides the perfect opportunity for public health nurses to relate with the community and meet their medical needs. In concert with the community they also work to promote specific health agenda and interventions that factors in the needs and challenges of the community. Issues such as contraceptive use in family planning, obesity, and drug abuse are handled under this segment.
Hygiene and sanitation is an important component of public health. Public health nurses work in schools to promote health through preventative measures that enhance health, personal hygiene and responsible lifestyles.
How Much Do Public Health Nurses Earn?
The answer to this question is Good Money. Depending on the organization and the location a public health nurse practices, the average annual salary of a public health nurse is :
United States: $63,752 per year
United Kingdom: £42651 per year
Canada: $75,944 per year or $39 per hour
Germany: $56,594 per year or $27 per hour
South Africa: R 287, 079
Nigeria: =N= 218,050
Some career opportunities in public health nursing also come with long- term care, life insurance, training opportunities, and a good retirement package.