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Can new nurse graduates enter the field of risk management?

Tuesday June 25, 2013
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Dear Donna,

Can new nurse graduates enter the field of risk management? What are the requirements?

New Nurse

Dear Donna replies:

Dear New Nurse,

New graduate nurses can and have entered the specialty of risk management. The only requirement is that you have a healthcare background, which you already do. In fact, non-healthcare individuals once dominated the field, but we have evolved beyond that.

Check out the website of the American Society for Healthcare Risk Management (www.ashrm.org). Attend local chapter meetings as a guest for now. Do some informational interviewing (www.Nurse.com/Cardillo/Interviewing) with members and officers. When there's something you want to do or learn more about, it makes sense to rub elbows with those already doing it.

Keep in mind that many nurses are not aware of the changing hospital job market or that new nurses cannot find bedside hospital employment. So when they say, "You need to get hospital experience first," you might say "I hear what you're saying but, as I'm sure you're aware, most new nurses are not being hired by hospitals these days. I'm very interested in risk management and am confident I can do a great job there and learn." You have to sell yourself and overcome objections.

Use the search feature at Nurse.com and you'll find many articles and previous Q&As on this subject. Here's a great CE course (free to read-only) that gives you a good overview of the role of risk management in healthcare http://CE.Nurse.com/CE105-60/every-nurse-is-a-risk-manager/coursepage.

Best wishes,

Donna Cardillo, RN, MA, well-known career guru, is Nurse.com’s “Dear Donna” and author of “Your First Year as a Nurse: Making the Transition from Total Novice to Successful Professional” and “The ULTIMATE Career Guide for Nurses: Practical Advice for Thriving at Every Stage of Your Career.” Information about the books is available at www.Nurse.com/CE/7010 and www.Nurse.com/CE/7250, respectively. To ask Donna your question, go to www.Nurse.com/Asktheexperts/Deardonna. Find a “Dear Donna” seminar near you: Call 800-866-0919 or visit http://Events.nursingspectrum.com/Seminar.