4 Outside-the-Box Job Opportunities for NPs & PAs

Are you growing tired of the same old workday? Do you feel stuck in your nurse practitioner or physician assistant career? Perhaps you've been working in the same clinical setting for a long period of time and your brain is permanently on autopilot. Or, maybe your schedule no longer fits with the needs of your family. Whatever the reason, there comes a time in our lives as NPs and PAs when we need to move on. Fortunately, for healthcare providers there are some exciting and unique opportunities available. Start thinking outside the box when it comes to your next position with opportunities like these. 

1. Telehealth

Most nurse practitioners and physician assistants think psychiatric consults when they hear telehealth. The virtual medical field, however, is rapidly expanding its reach. New companies offer online services like primary care and wellness consultations and are actively seeking providers to facilitate these sessions. Better yet, caring for patients from a laptop allows NPs and PAs to work from home, often on their own schedule. Telehealth platforms can be the perfect way to add flexibility and a change of scenery to your nurse practitioner career. 

2. Locum Tenens Assignments

Are you ready to get up an go? If spontaneity with a steady paycheck appeals to you, consider locum tenens opportunities for nurse practitioners and physician assistants. These jobs are short-term assignments ranging from a single shift to a few weeks or months, or a even long-term gig. NPs and PAs working in locums accept temp positions based on their availability. Often, housing or a living stipend is provided in addition to an hourly wage. Accept opportunities across the country or in your local area. Just remember, you'll need to get licensed in the sate where you're planning to work. 

3. Home Health 

Working in home health isn't generally regarded as the most riveting of clinical opportunities among nurse practitioners and physician assistants. However, this growing field does offer several perks. If you're sick of sitting in a cramped, windowless office, hit the open road and travel to see your patients. Home health nurse practitioners commonly visit patients who have been recently released from the hospital providing follow-up care to prevent readmission. Home health visits may also take place in facilities like assisted living residences or nursing homes. Home health nurse practitioners may enjoy increased flexibility in their schedules and find the arrangement a refreshing change of pace from the clinic or hospital setting. 

4. Foreign Service Medical Provider

Foreign Service Medical Providers are employed by the U.S. Department of State and work in countries across the globe- from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to Beijing, China or Quito, Ecuador there are endless locations available to nurse practitioners in this field. The U.S. Department of State warns that as a Foreign Service Provider you may work in small or remote countries, harsh climates and in environments where American-style amenities and the latest technological advances are often unavailable (If you are like me, this is actually a job endorsement rather than deterrent).  

Responsibilities of nurse practitioners working as Foreign Service Medical Providers include providing primary health care services, managing preventative medicine programs such as ensuring safe drinking water, coordinating emergency medical response, and evaluating local medical resources. Applicants to the program must have at least four years of clinical experience within the past six years.

5. Correctional Facilities

Are you ready to test your clinical know-how? Correctional facilities employ physician assistants and nurse practitioners to care for their inmate populations. Complex medical problems are more prevalent among incarcerated individuals as they may not have received consistent healthcare in the past. Specialty visits are also difficult to arrange for these individuals, so healthcare providers working at such facilities do it all! If you're looking for a clinical challenge and a non-traditional work environment, consider checking out opportunities at correctional facilities in your region (here's a look at the job safety stats). 

 

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