To become a nurse administrator, an applicant must be proficient in many different tasks on an executive level. Nurse administrators are sometimes referred to as Directors of Nursing due to the fact that their job is to manage the nursing staff of facilities like large hospitals and medical facilities or departments. They are responsible for any administrative duties that include scheduling, developing safety protocols and training procedures, as well as evaluating each member of the staff and attending meetings that pertain to the daily operations of the facility,
As a member of upper management, it is up to the nurse administrator to be able to work with not only the nurses but other members of the facility staff. This means that in addition to understanding and being able to assist with the nursing portion of their position, they must also be effective managers that can organize, delegate, and work to solve sensitive issues throughout their department as well as the rest of the company. A nurse administrator must have the confidence and self-assuredness to take positive action in all types of situations.
What Are the Duties of a Nurse Administrator?
A nurse administrator is first and foremost a nurse. Their duties begin and end with patient care. Nurse administrators manage all of the nursing personnel under their position. This means that the administrator is responsible for providing each nurse with the proper training they need to remain productive and efficient at their job. This additional training can include safety protocols, the dispensing of medications, and the proper use of PPE and other necessary pieces of equipment. A nurse administrator must also be able to perform proper evaluations on an employee’s performance and take any actions that are necessary.
It is also up to a nurse administrator to act on behalf of their department when it comes to issues that affect the facility as a whole. This may include dealing with issues involving poor patient care, not following safety protocols, or providing positive feedback to a member of the nursing staff that has gone above and beyond for not only the patients but the facility as well. Nurse administrators play an important role in the operation of any type of large medical or long-term healthcare facility. They are responsible for every member of their staff as well as their actions.
What Type of Education Does a Nurse Administrator Need?
Due to the type of work that a nurse administrator is required to do, a basic degree program in nursing may not be as sufficient as one might believe. In most cases, applicants who are preferring this type of position have already completed either a Bachelors or Masters degree in Nursing Studies and are ready to move forward through their education to either a Masters degree or a Ph.D. program. While a nurse administrator still pays close attention to hands-on patient care, this is often delegated to the floor staff of each shift. It is up to the nurse administrator to address any complaints that arise about patient care as well as offer appreciation to nurses who continually go above and beyond for their patients.
As part of maintaining their credentials from year to year, a nursing administrator must enroll and complete so many continuing education classes each year. This means enrolling in the classes, successfully passing them, and then receiving your certification. These courses are designed to keep the student as up to date as possible in terms of the latest trends and topics in the nursing and healthcare/medical fields. Certification courses can also help to keep management skills up to date. Receiving a certification for a class or program is a great way to prove your value and may open the door to more opportunities down the road.
How Much Can a Nurse Administrator Make in a Year?
Nurse administrators, especially those with an abundance of experience in both management as well as nursing, can expect to earn a higher than average salary. The median salary for this type of position is approximately $81,000 per year. Individuals who are just moving up and may not have the managerial skills as sharp as they need to be may earn around $59,000 to start. As they continue to gain experience and move up in the ranks, they can expect their salaries and benefits to increase as well.
Nurse administrators who bring a Masters degree or higher and several years of experience to the table may expect to earn as much as $121,000 per year if the facility is large enough to offer that amount. It’s important to remember that the size of the facility as well as its location will be determining factors in the amount of salary a nurse administrator is able to earn. An administrator in a small facility that has the same experience and qualifications as one in a major city may only make half as much in terms of salary and benefits.