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Exploring Seven Ways Nurses Use Writing in Their Jobs

Exploring How Nurses Use Writing in Their Jobs

Nursing is a profession that requires a wide variety of skills. Writing may not be the first skill that comes to mind when thinking of nurses, but it is a vital part of their job. Nurses use writing for documentation, patient records, communication, and other essential tasks. In this blog post, we’ll explore how nurses use writing in their jobs and the importance of writing skills for nurses.

Why Do Nurses Write?

One of your primary duties as a nurse is to educate the public about health conditions, especially conditions affecting the specific communities nurses work in. Writing is one avenue that nurses of different specialties use to get information to the public. Nurses often write privately to chart critical information about a patient. Other nurses use writing to write in public forums to spread educational material that is informational and helpful. As a nurse, writing is a vital communication skill. With this skill, you can help save lives and help people better manage their health at home. In addition, this skill can also be beneficial for businesses in need of content writing and creation.

Types of Writing Nurses Engage In

Nurses may use several different platforms to reach a specific audience. Here are seven ways you can use writing in your job.

concentrated nurse writing on a clipboard

1. Writing for a specific health website or journal

Several online health forums (i.e., WebMD and Healthline) work with nurses to write on health education topics. This trend is because nurses spend a moderate amount of time working alongside medical professionals. In your work, you’ve probably needed to document patients’ charts. Thus, your writing skills are a requirement for being part of a healthcare team. Many online health forums understand this and will hire nurses to write for them.

2. Health Content Writer for a Business

Businesses across the globe provide services and products to help people live longer, healthier lives. They need to market their product in a way their target audience understands. That’s where nurses come in. Nurses use writing for businesses that sell products to other companies or consumers. As a nurse, you are trusted with communicating because you can offer a potential client perspective on a product or service they didn’t know they needed.

3. Nurse Blogger

Many nurses use writing to share various health topics that need nurses’ perspectives by having their own blogs or guest blog with others. Blogging is an excellent opportunity for nurses to reach multiple audiences seeking health professionals who can effectively communicate on different health topics. You can also blog to write on healthcare-related topics, including entrepreneurship and small business development. 

4. Nurse Researcher

Some nurses may decide to become faculty members at academic institutions for research. Research nurses work to uncover new scientific knowledge and then write about it in research journals or broadcast it through media outlets to reach a larger audience. Nurse researchers may also be hired to write grants. This application of writing is essential because discoveries in science can lead to better health outcomes for the public.

female nurse writing medical records on her office

5. Nurse Educator for a Hospital

Nurse educators also spend a great deal of writing for their jobs. As a nurse educator, you are the expert on a particular health topic. You’ll likely write pamphlets and short summaries on this topic to engage your target audience. Nurse educators also work to educate other nurses in the hospital. This teaching can happen when new evidence-based practices need to be introduced to the staff. Nurse educators can spend a great deal of time writing out educational materials for staff. They may also need to write reports to document the implementation of these practices.

6. Writing at the Bedside

Most nurses start their (future writing) careers at the bedside. You probably noticed this job requires a lot of time to write. This aspect is crucial because nurses spend more time with the patient than anyone else on the healthcare team. Documenting what you saw, heard, felt, or even smelled during your patient’s assessment should be charted so a medical provider can follow up as needed. You may also spend a good part of your shift writing patient care plans.

 7. Nursing Instructors

As a nursing instructor, you may write for future nurses. Nursing instructors create lectures and assignments for students and provide written feedback on papers. Some nursing instructors may also work in clinical settings where they often write book chapters, books, and journal articles for publication.

Putting Your Nurse Writer Skills to Good Use

As a nurse, you are a valuable member of any writing team and can work in various settings that require writing. You provide experience in multiple specialties and can host content everywhere. The combination of writing and communication skills nurses possess makes them a critical asset to businesses, consumers, and the general public.

So what does it take to write in the areas mentioned above? According to RegisteredNursing.org, nurse writers do not need a special certification to write, but they should have several years of experience as a nurse before offering guidance in medical writing. Good writing is effective for almost any audience and conveys a level of expertise in health science over the general public. 

Are you interested in becoming a nurse writer? Click here to learn about more work opportunities for nurse writers.

References

Kelbach, J.(2022, July 20). How nurse writers help conquer your content marketing ROI goals. WriteRN Content Agency. https://writern.net/how-content-writers-help-conquer-your-roi-goals/

Leibold, N. (n.d.). Writing in Nursing. Why Writing Works: Disciplinary Approaches to Composing Texts. http://otb.smsu.edu/

Maynard, K. (2022, September 14). 5 reasons why nurses are the best choice for healthcare content writing. WriteRN Content Agency. https://writern.net/why-nurses-best-choice-for-healthcare-content-writing/

Registerednursing.org. (2022, November 24). Nurse writer. RegisteredNursing.org https://www.registerednursing.org/specialty/nurse-writer/#becoming-nurse-writer

Shely, A. (2022, June 15). What types of writing do nurse writers do? WriteRN Content Agency. https://writern.net/what-types-of-writing-do-nurse-writers-do/

About the Author

Alexandria Jones-Patten
Alexandria Jones-Patten, PhD, MBA, MSN, RN

Alexandria Jones-Patten, PhD, MBA, MSN, RN has been a Registered Nurse since 2017. She has a background in cardiovascular care and providing primary care to populations experiencing homelessness.

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