Fill out your new career PROfile on and let employers come to you • SIGN UP

What is the best route for me, an ED RN with 16 years of experience, to help the nursing profession and secure my own financial future?



Dear Nancy,

I have been an RN in the ED for the past 16 years and continue to work there. What is the best route for me to help the nursing profession and secure my own financial future?


Dear Nancy replies:

Dear Cassandra,

It would be important for you to consider asking this question to your fellow colleagues and others who might be in a position to help you with your future plans, such as a current or former instructor or the DON of the ED where you work. You also might review what the Emergency Nurses Association ( ) has to say on the subject you raise.

One idea is to consider is an advanced degree as a nurse practitioner. In this role, you would clearly expand your options in any ED department and your salary would reflect these options. If you decided not to stay in the ED, your specialization in your area of advanced practice, such as the family or the elderly, would allow you to work more independently in a clinic of your own or with other nurse practitioners (consistent with your state’s nurse practice act and rules).

To gain more information about advanced practice, check The American Association of Nurse Practitioner’s website ( The website has a wealth of information that would be helpful, including certification programs, legislation, career information, and of course, information on how The Affordable Care Act supports opportunities for advanced practice nurses.



About Author

Nancy J. Brent, RN, MS, JD, is an attorney in private practice in Wilmette, Ill. This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended as legal or any other advice. The reader is encouraged to seek the advice of an attorney or other professional when an opinion is needed.

Leave A Reply