Ambulatory care nurses are registered nurses who specialize in treating patients in an outpatient or short stay setting. They’re part of a multidisciplinary healthcare team that provides primary care to a diverse population. The continuity of patient care that’s often provided in outpatient settings allows nurses to bond with their patients, which can make these positions very rewarding. The outpatient settings also frequently offer a better work/life balance with shorter business hours that often don’t require working nights and limited weekend hours required.
Ambulatory care nurse salary
According to ZipRecruiter, ambulatory care nurses in permanent positions earned an average annual salary of $85,670 in December 2020, which breaks down to about $1,647 per week or $41 per hour. Travel ambulatory care nursing jobs posted on NurseFly during this same period paid a gross average weekly rate of $1,727 when working an average of 36 hours per week. Pay packages for travel nurses who claim a permanent tax-home may include untaxed stipends for housing, meals, and other living expenses.
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Ambulatory Care Nurse FAQs
How Much Do Ambulatory Care Nurse Jobs Pay?
For jobs available on NurseFly as of Sunday, April 11th 2021, the average weekly pay for Ambulatory Care Nurse jobs is $1,817, but can pay up to $2,671 per week. In 2021, Ambulatory Care Nurses jobs on Nursefly paid a gross average weekly pay of $1,727 per week working an average of 36 hours per week. This includes non-taxable compensation like living stipends, meal stipends, and housing which add up to an average value of $997 per week.
- min - $1,322
- avg - $1,817
- max - $2,671
What does an ambulatory care nurse do?
Ambulatory care nurses often care for high volumes of patients in a short amount of time. Each patient encounter can be unpredictable and may require independent and collaborative activities. Depending on the type of environment the nurse works in, they may care for patients with a range of injuries or illnesses and have an incredibly diverse set of tasks each day. One of their primary tasks will be identifying each patient’s needs to determine what type of care is required. Other general tasks an ambulatory care nurse may perform include:
Evaluating patients’ general health
Developing patient care plans
Recording patient histories
Taking vital signs
Assisting doctors during exams and procedures
Performing various procedures and diagnostic tests
Calling in refills to pharmacies
Coordinating healthcare services
Providing health-related education to patients and their families
Providing care across patient life spans
Inpatient duties may include documenting admissions and discharges, post-operative care of surgery patients, and collaboration with various members of the healthcare team
Where do ambulatory care nurses work?
Ambulatory care nurses usually care for non-emergency patients in a variety of settings where patients don’t stay overnight or are anticipated to have a short hospital stay (usually less than 36 hours). Some common places they may work include hospital-based outpatient clinics, non-acute ambulatory day surgery and diagnostic centers, short-stay inpatient units, stand-alone specialty care outpatient clinics, solo or group medical practices, and nurse-managed clinics. Other possible places of employment include university and community clinics, telehealth services, Veterans Administration clinics, and patients’ homes.
What skills make a good ambulatory care nurse?
Good ambulatory care nurses have intuitive, multifaceted clinical knowledge with strong assessment and organizational skills to expedite appropriate treatment. They possess keen critical thinking skills, can think on their feet, and are prepared for various types of health issues. Ambulatory care nurses have excellent collaboration skills and easily function as part of a multidisciplinary team. Their exceptional communication and interpersonal skills promote a pleasant bedside manner in a frequently fast-paced environment, which allows them to effectively interact with all types of patients.
How to become an Ambulatory Care Travel Nurse
Pursuing a career as an ambulatory care travel nurse starts with earning a nursing degree. Prospective nurses need at least an associate degree in nursing, but some facilities prefer a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. Graduates must take and pass the NCLEX-RN and complete all other state licensing requirements to become a registered nurse.
Although not required, board certification is a smart career move. The American Nurses Credentialing Center offers Ambulatory Care Nursing Certification (AMB-BC™) after practicing nursing full-time for two years and completing 2,000 hours of clinical practice and 30 hours of continued education in ambulatory care nursing.