A nurse administrator is a person that supervises nurses to ensure that the patients receive excellent care. Nurse administrators work at an executive level as persons in charge of the nursing department in a healthcare institution. They can also oversee all other departments or a network of hospitals. Some hospitals refer to the role of a nurse administrator as a director of nurses or nurse executive.
An administrator usually reports to a CEO or someone just below this position. The position of a nurse administrator in the hierarchy makes it different from that of a nurse manager who performs some roles of administration but at a narrower capacity. For instance, a nurse manager can be in charge of a unit but still answerable to a nurse administrator. Both roles require a similar set of skills, but administration requires more knowledge or supervision, management, budgeting, and finance.
Role and Duties of a Nurse Administrator
The job of a nurse administrator is extremely varied hence tricky to describe the responsibilities of a typical day. The roles and responsibilities depend on the scope of duties that a healthcare institution specifies. Nurse administrator is a highly regarded position because of the essential role in managing staff and performing other essential duties. Nurse administrators spend most of their time to oversee n performance of staff members serving in their departments.
Due to the nature of their job, nurse administrators barely perform the daily bedside care but delete gate such duties to other nurses. Nurse administration is a fast-paced position that requires the occupier of the position to fulfill different functions in a day. It requires extreme knowledge about nursing and administration functions.
Nurse administrators are responsible for these duties.
- Recruiting, hiring, and training nurses
- Budgeting and reporting financial matters
- Conducting performance evaluations
- Deciding on the equipment to purchase
- Developing and ensuring compliance of policies and procedures
- Linking nursing staff, departments, and hospital executives
- Developing strategic visions for their departments or hospital
- Create work schedules, perform reviews, and establish work policies.
A nurse administrator also maintains ethical and legal standards for nursing job performance.
Most of the work takes place in an office but not on care floor, so the administration has minimal or no direct interaction with the patients. However, they apply their knowledge and skills to improve the experience of patients in their department and across an entire organization. A nurse administrator plays a role in improving the quality of care by increasing the allocation of resources, providing education and leadership to new nurses as well as clinical staff. They also set policies, priorities, and departments to improve health for large populations. Nurse administrators should have excellent communication skills because they act as a link between the nursing staff under them and other departments in a facility. They must also be skilled writers as the job involves report writing and reviewing.
Where Does A Nurse Administrator Work?
Nurse administrators can perform their duties at hospitals and clinics of all sizes.
Nursing administration job takes place in the various healthcare setting, including:
- Outpatient care centers
- Physician offices
- Government agencies
- Nursing and residential care facility
Nurse administrators can manage a small team at places like a skilled nursing facility or manage large teams of nurses at a big city hospital. It might also be a broader reach job of managing multiple teams or departments at a large healthcare facility. Training to Be a Nurse Administrator
A primary goal for those aspiring to become a nurse administrator is to pursue extensive education and gather work experience to be class above other nurses. An applicant to the nursing administration position must be a registered nurse with at least a bachelor’s degree in nursing, but a master’s degree has turned to be a standard in the field. Many nursing administrators have a Doctorate. A Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) enables students to start developing managerial skills that they need for transitioning into a senior role.
MSN programs can offer targeted training with a nurse administrator concentration. Graduates of a related masters program may also pursue a post master’s certificate tailored for registered nurses seeking recognition in nursing administration as their additional specialty.
Curricula for these programs incorporate
- Nursing research
- Heath policy
- Health research
An MSN degree provides eligibility to apply for a DNP program that is of many benefits to those who are aspiring to become nurse administrators. A nursed with a DNP degree, the experience of 2-5 years and relevance professional certifications can become a nurse administrator. DNP program prepares a student for nursing administration role because they learn about these essential subjects that help in conducting administrative duties.
- Resource management
- Resource and statistics
Students can also pursue a course in leadership, health policy, and global public health.
DNP capstone projects provide them with a forum to evaluate essential current issues with a significant impact on the healthcare sector and share the work with healthcare communities. Nursing programs for all academic levels have an option to study on–campus or online. Anyone can study while working to gain clinical experience as it counts towards consideration for nurse administration application.
Students should after earning an advanced degree, apply and pass a national certification exam by the relevant examining body to become eligible to work in an executive position.
Nurse Administrator Job Outlook
Nurses in all cadres are the largest block of workers in healthcare, and always there is a shortage of their services. The need for well-qualified nursing administrators with a grasp of healthcare functioning is high and will continue growing in the coming years. The demand for nurse administrators even in countries with a high number of medical staff like the USA will, according to BLS grow by 20% up to 2026. The growth is almost three times higher than the average for other occupations.
A rise in population will create the need for more healthcare facilities or departments and generate more job openings. Candidates with masters or doctorate in nursing or health administration are in a better position to fill the role of a hospital administrator in the future.
The median salary range for nurse administrator is between $83,000 and $107,000. It depends on the type of employer, work location, experience, and level of responsibility. Hospitals pay the highest salary while residential care facilities offer the lowest payment.