Pediatric Endocrinology Nurse Job Description & Scope of Practice
A pediatric endocrinology nurse treats children with disorders of the endocrine system, such as diabetes. The nurse assists both children and their parents learn how to manage the effects of their disease.
A nurse who specializes in pediatric endocrinology assists the doctor in conducting patient exams and patient evaluations as well as providing treatment and educating parents and children being treated.
Some of the most important job duties and roles of this nursing position include:
- Educating children and their families on managing their disease
- Conducting routine medical examinations
- Assisting with patient testing and evaluation
- Providing information to patients and parents about medications
- Acting as a liaison between the doctor and the patient’s family
Nurses may work in a hospital or clinic, or as part of a private practice. Some nurses may pursue a research position, to assist in the technological advances of treating pediatric endocrinology disorders.
How to Become a Pediatric Endocrinology Nurse
This specialty nursing position is an ideal career for a nurse who wants to find an important medical specialty field and who also likes working with children and their families. The position begins with proper education and experience. The first step is to earn a BSN, Bachelor of Science Nursing degree. It is helpful to include specialized endocrinology coursework. You must then become a licensed nurse by taking the NCLEX-RN exam. Then you will be prepared to begin working in the nursing profession.
Nurses who wish to pursue working in an area of specialty, such as pediatric endocrinology, will need to practice as a general RN for several or more years to gather experience. It is best to gain experience by working in a pediatric practice or in a children’s ward. Additionally, it is useful to work in the area of endocrinology as well as to take some advanced courses in the subject to improve your area of expertise.
Pediatric Endocrinology Nurse Education Requirements, Certification, and Schooling Programs
Those striving to work in pediatric endocrinology will need to begin with a strong nursing undergraduate program and receive a Bachelor’s of Science degree in nursing (BSN) It is recommended that the nursing candidate begin taking specialized courses in pediatric nursing and endocrinology as soon as possible. Many nurses will first get some practical experience before continuing their education.
Nursing students may wish to pursue an advanced degree such as a Master’s degree. The concentration should be in the area of pediatrics or endocrinology. Pediatric endocrinology nurses are not currently certified. However, many nurses in the field choose to become certified in another area such as pediatric nursing. The Pediatric Nursing Certification Board (PNCB) certifies pediatric nurses who meet qualifications and pass a certification exam. Successful applicants receive the Certified Pediatric Nurse (CPN) credential. Qualifications include 1,800 hours of pediatric clinical experience working as a Registered Nurse (RN) within two years prior to the exam. The exam covers multiple topics in the following disciplines: respiratory health, gastrointestinal health, infection disease, emergencies, oncology and mental health among others. Certification is voluntary, but it is highly recommended by the Society of Pediatric Nurses (SPN).
Pediatric endocrinology nurses may choose to join the Pediatric Endocrinology Nursing Society (PENS), a non-profit organization specializing in the advancement of pediatric endocrinology nursing.
Pediatric Endocrinology Nurse Salary and Career Outlook
This is a highly specialized area of nursing. All nursing positions, especially those requiring special education and training, are expected to grow in the coming years. The area of endocrinology in particular is growing rapidly. A nurse with a specialization in pediatric endocrinology will be in high demand in the coming years. The salary for a nurse with this area of expertise ranges from $65,000 to $82,000. The more education and experience the nurse has, the higher the salary is likely to be.