Intermediate care nurses, also called progressive care nurses, provide nursing care for patients who require a higher level of care than what’s provided in a general medical-surgical unit, but don’t require the higher level of care received in an intensive care unit. Intermediate care units are often referred to as step-down units because patients are often stepping down, or transitioning, from the ICU until they’re well enough to transition to the med-surg unit or skilled long-term care.
Because the concept of intermediate care is relatively new, demand in this nursing specialty is growing rapidly. The National Telemetry Association reports a positive job outlook for IMCU nurses due to a shortage of nurses pursuing certification in this specialized field.
Intermediate care nursing is a top recruited specialty on NurseFly with thousands of IMCU nursing jobs available around the country.
Intermediate care nurse salary
According to Salary.com, staff intermediate registered nurses earn a median wage of $76,300, as of July 2020. This works out to about $1,467 per week and $36.68 hourly, based on a 40-hour work week. NurseFly data indicates that intermediate travel nurses averaged $1,639 per week in 2019. Besides their taxed salary, travel IMCU nurses who claim a permanent tax home also benefit from tax-free stipends, such as housing allowances and per diems for meals.
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Intermediate Care Nurse FAQs
What are the best agencies for Intermediate Care Nurse jobs?
The agencies on NurseFly that currently have the most Intermediate Care Nurse jobs are MedPro Healthcare Staffing (1035), TaleMed (739), and American Mobile Healthcare (614).
How Much Do Intermediate Care Nurse Jobs Pay?
For jobs available on NurseFly as of Friday, September 18th 2020, the average weekly pay for Intermediate Care Nurse jobs is $1,761, but can pay up to $3,525 per week. In 2020, Progressive Care Nurses jobs on Nursefly paid a gross average weekly pay of $1,790 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 $1,176 per week.
- min - $590
- avg - $1,761
- max - $3,525
What does an intermediate care nurse do?
Intermediate care nurses frequently care for three or four patients at a time and must check on them hourly. They closely monitor their patients’ vital signs, pain levels, consciousness, and wound sites, if applicable. They may change bandages or administer OTC pain medication and must immediately notify a patient’s doctor if there’s any change in their health. Other common tasks performed by nurses in the intermediate care unit at Putnam General Hospital include airway management, ventilator support, cardiac telemetry to monitor heart function, administering titrated medicated IV infusions, and inserting and maintaining chest tubes and ventral IV lines.
How to become an intermediate care travel nurse?
Transitioning to intermediate care nursing requires candidates to be a registered nurse, which involves earning an associate or bachelor’s degree from an accredited nursing program, passing the NCLEX exam and fulfilling state licensing requirements. Further certification requirements include Basic Life Support for Healthcare Professionals and Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support with Progressive Care Certified Nurse credentialing and certification in telemetry preferred, if not required. Most facilities also request travel IMCU nurses to have recent experience in acute care and/or acute care telemetry with one to two years of experience.
What skills make a good intermediate care nurse?
IMCU nurses must have well-rounded nursing skills to care for a variety of patients’ needs. It’s essential they have solid critical care skills to quickly analyze data and react to potentially life-threatening situations. They must also possess a blend of technical and soft skills. Essential technical skills include advanced knowledge of cardiovascular health, vital sign monitoring, wound dressing, medication dose titration, EKG and echocardiogram monitoring, and medical record-keeping. Exceptional interpersonal skills, including communication, collaboration, compassion, and empathy, rank among the top desirable soft skills.
Where do intermediate care nurses work?
Intermediate care nurses typically work in a hospital setting, but they may work in different areas of the hospital. Many hospitals have stepdown units between the ICU and med-surg unit and between the NICU and pediatric ward, but they may also provide intermediate care near the emergency department or postoperative recovery rooms.