If you are a nurse and have an interest in public health, then the master in public health nursing degree, may be suitable for you. Obtaining this degree will enable you to access a variety of careers in which you can continue to advance your practical nursing skills and at the same time enhance the overall health and access to health care. Public health nurses usually work within communities and community health provision facilities, although they can also be found within government agencies and nonprofit organizations.
What are the different things you can do with a Masters in Public health nursing degree?
Let’s take a look at some of the possible careers.
#1 Public Health Nurse
As a public health nurse, you will be responsible for preventing illness and disease by educating the public on good health practices. You will usually work in underserved areas, researching and preventing epidemics and providing vaccinations. Your focus will be on the education of the community, rather than on providing health care itself, being an advocate for community members.
The focus is on preventive care, developing educational programs, and communicating with the community and those that provide clinical care. You will also create appropriate treatment plans and evaluate their effectiveness, while at the same time referring patients to support services within the community.
According to Payscale.com, public health nurses had a median salary of $56,757 per year as of September 5, 2017.
#2 Public Health Analyst
As a public health analyst, you will work for organizations to determine the progress of public heath issues, while also managing the professionals addressing them. You need strong communication skills and an analytical mind that can think outside of the box to create efficient programs to improve outcomes of health programs.
You will also be responsible for maintaining the efficiency of public health programs. This means setting the budgets properly and using the resources appropriately. You will be a team player, working with everyone within the health organization and the general public, but you will equally be able to work on your own under minimal supervision. A strong element of your role will be to increase patient satisfaction with the available programs. This means that you will regularly have to be out in the community for site visits and research.
According to Payscale.com, public health analysts had a median salary of $62,027 per year as of September 6, 2017.
#3 Managed Care Manager
Managed care managers are responsible for the activities of a care center, and its contracting and negotiating positions. They ensure that appropriate contracts are implemented and budgeted for, while meeting all the relevant professional standards. Furthermore, they focus on coding and claims, interacting with various departments.
They will also supervise other staff within the facility, while evaluating their performance, training, and selection. Between 25% an 30% of your working time will be spent traveling to and from centers and contractors. You must be a strategic thinker that can build relationships with other providers and insurance companies, while focusing on budget constraints as well.
The core tasks of a managed care manager include analyzing the various reimbursement methods of the facility and taking part in the care contracting activities. Furthermore, you will be responsible for staff supervision, selection, and retention, as well as for the operational resources.
According to Payscale.com, managed care managers had a median salary of $65,938 per year as of September 5, 2017.
#4 Public Health Information Officer
Public health information officers usually work for government agencies. Their primary responsibility is to maintain good relationships between populations and the government. Typically, these professionals work in offices, but some travel will be required. They often work during the evenings and weekends, as people are often not available during regular office hours. Additionally, they have strong relations with heads of government like mayors and city planners and managers.
In a sense, these professionals are public relations specialists, but with a focus on health care. More often than not, they are government representatives, making appearances and speaking on behalf of the town. They have strong links with the local and national press, being a spokesperson for both the government and the citizens of the community.
Besides having extensive knowledge on public health issues, therefore, these professionals are also strong communicators. They hold regular public speaking events and must be well organized, as well as dependable. Furthermore, they must understand modern technology, have strong organization skills, and pay attention to details.
They focus on improving communication across the board between government agencies, the press, and its citizens. With modern communication methods, a strong element of this is using social media and other such forms of digital media. They may also provide training to other public health professionals on how to appropriately use these tools and technologies, and how they can be beneficial in terms of improving the links between health agencies and the population.
According to Payscale.com, public health information officers had a median $51,703 per year as of September 5, 2017.
#5 Public Health Educator
Public health educators are responsible for teaching community members about wellness and healthy behaviors. They create, implement, and monitor programs that aim to improve overall health, often in underserved communities. They will also collect data and talk about issues and concerns with both the public and with health care providers.
They can be found in a wide range of settings, including colleges, private businesses, doctors’ offices, the government, nonprofit organizations, and hospitals. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), there were some 61,400 health educators in 2014, 22% of whom worked for the government. Others worked for private, local, and state hospitals, ambulatory health care services, professional, civic, grant making, religious, and other similar organizations, and in social assistance.
The majority work in offices, although frequent travel is required to attend meetings and deliver programs. A lot of time is spent in the field, therefore, working directly with members of the community to hold events and to collect data. Full time working hours are common, and many also have to work during unsociable hours.
According to the BLS, health educators and community health workers had a median salary of $44,390 per year as of May 2016. However, this is at the bachelor’s degree level or below. Those who have earned a master’s degree are more likely to find themselves in the top 10% of earners, who earn more than $95,730 per year as of May 2016.
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- Public Health Nurse Salary. (2017, Sep. 5). Retrieved from http://www.payscale.com/research/US/Job=Public_Health_Nurse/Salary
- Public Health Analyst Salary. (2017, Sep. 6). Retrieved from http://www.payscale.com/research/US/Job=Public_Health_Analyst/Salary
- Managed Care Manager Salary. (2017, Sep. 5). Retrieved from http://www.payscale.com/research/US/Job=Managed_Care_Manager/Salary
- Public Information Officer Salary. (2017, Sep. 5). Retrieved from http://www.payscale.com/research/US/Job=Public_Information_Officer/Salary
- Health Educators and Community Health Workers. (2015, Dec. 17). Retrieved from https://www.bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/health-educators.htm