20 Incredibly Unique Nurse Practitioner Jobs You Might Have Never Heard Of!
Written By: Donna Reese MSN, RN, CSN
Although there is plenty of demand for nurse practitioners in hospitals, urgent care, and physician offices, are you wondering whether are there any unique jobs for nurse practitioners? Fortunately, there happens to be a banquet of other interesting choices to choose from in the fast-growing profession of nurse practitioner! This article outlines 20 most incredibly unique nurse practitioner jobs that may surprise and interest you. If you are considering breaking out of the traditional NP role, read on to discover some of the more unusual and exciting career possibilities for a nurse practitioner!
WHAT ARE THE MOST UNIQUE NURSE PRACTITIONER JOBS?
(The following are the 20 most incredibly unique Nurse Practitioner jobs you might never have heard of)
1. Travel Nurse Practitioner
The travel nurse practitioner specialty is also termed locum tenens
. Locum tenens means the nurse fills a temporary staffing need at a particular facility. These types of nurse practitioners can find positions at inpatient and outpatient hospitals and clinics, home health, or the government.
Travel nurse practitioners enjoy excellent pay and freedom to choose where to live, work, and play. This unique nurse practitioner job is popular with young or single adult nurses and those who love to travel and enjoy freedom and adventure.
2. School Nurse Practitioner
Many are not aware that there is a difference between a school nurse working in a school and a school nurse practitioner working in a school-based health clinic. School nurse practitioners generally work in inner-city or underserved rural areas in a school-based health center
. While school nurse RN's take care of the daily acute care of children in school and perform state-mandated screening such as hearing and vision, the NP provides an advanced nurse role. School nurse practitioners provide physical exams, complex chronic and acute illness care, medical follow-up for ongoing problems, prescribe medication and immunizations, and referrals to outside agencies.
3. Health Coach
Nurse health coaches combine the physical, psychological, social, spiritual, and cultural components of health and wellbeing. Nurses are already attuned to taking care of mind and body as they are trained to see the patient as a whole person. This niche in the NP profession is becoming popular, and online training can easily be found to further your expertise in the area of health coaching.
Nurse coaches can own their own health coaching business or work in wellness centers and spas. They can also work in hospitals or specialty clinics. This unique job for nurse practitioners is a good fit for an NP who enjoys working one on one with patients and is up to the challenge of managing their own business if they so desire.
4. Onsite Corporate Health Nurse Practitioner
Some employers offer a health benefit of onsite wellness. This perk may provide onsite health care services such as medical screening, exercise programs, health coaching, injury prevention, safety classes, physical therapy, health education, managing chronic conditions, case management for workmen's compensation injuries, and providing care for acute occupational injury. This model's purpose is that employees will miss less time with illness, injury, and outside medical appointments with wellness and prevention services readily available.
With their medical background, a nurse practitioner is well equipped to provide many of the necessary services for an onsite corporate health clinic
. In fact, the majority of these types of clinics are staffed by nurse practitioners or physician assistants.
If you are interested in this unique nurse practitioner job, look for onsite health clinics mainly in large corporations and cities.
5. Cannabis Clinic Manager
A quick job search found this specialty area of nursing to be a new and popular specialty for nurse practitioners. And it is currently in demand! The best part is that cannabis clinics are popping up all over most cities, so you may be able to find one close to home. In addition, the salary is quite good! According to ZipRecruiter
, they see annual salaries as high as $141,000 for a nurse practitioner in this unusual field.
For this specialty, an NP would serve as the onsite medical authority, overseeing patients by providing education and counseling on usage, dosing, drug interactions, and allergies.
If you want to be part of an up-and-coming and atypical career, a Cannabis NP is undoubtedly a unique nurse practitioner job.
6. Medical Weight Loss Clinic Owner
Nurses are well suited to counsel clients regarding weight loss due to their medical background and empathetic nature, and skills as educators. With more than 70 percent of adults in the US overweight
, there certainly is a need for weight loss education and programming.
It is no wonder that nurse practitioner-owned Medical Weight loss franchises are on the rise. With the benefit of having full practice authority
, the NP can own and operate such a business independently. Although start-up costs may be high, purchasing a weight loss franchise or center can pay off in the long run with high returns for those who are bold enough to take a chance on a business endeavor.
7. Opioid Addiction Clinic Nurse PractitionerOpioid Addiction treatment
centers are in demand due to millions of Americans now receiving treatment for this type of addiction. What makes this specialty unique for nurse practitioners is that they fill a critical lapse in healthcare in rural America
. Previously, there were no options for the opioid-addicted in these areas. Thanks to NP's, addicts in remote regions can now receive prescribed medication and treatment to help them recover. If you enjoy a challenge and love the beauty of working in rural USA, this will be one of the more unique nurse practitioner jobs to choose from.
8. Movie Set Medical Team
Are you intrigued with movies, Hollywood, and acting? If so, there is a niche for you in the film set medical team. Hollywood is the logical location for this type of position, but there are medical teams all over the US keeping the sets and actors safe and provided for medically.
A movie set medical team can be comprised of nurses, nurse practitioners, EMT's and paramedics. Work is usually contractual through an employment service that caters explicitly to production companies.
With the COVID Pandemic, movie set medical teams are currently even more in demand. These medical teams are responsible for COVID precautions on the set and filming. In addition, the team provides COVID testing and vaccinations on location.
9. Health Content/Medical Writer
Nurse Practitioners have a lot of experience reading and writing health-related content. Therefore, they are a natural fit for a health content or medical writer's career. Many nurse practitioners read research and nursing journals regularly and are well qualified to write similar content.
Based on your nursing credentials, you can easily find work as a health content writer. Being a health writer does not require any additional schooling, although online classes are available to help guide you in your writing business's start-up if desired.
You can find employment with numerous organizations such as educational institutions, marketing companies, magazines, online publications, health corporations or pharmaceutical companies, and many more. You can also work in research or write books. The possibilities are endless!
The lure of this type of job is that you can set your hours, work as much or as little as you like, and best of all, there is plenty of work available. You can really mold this career to be what you want it to be, making it one of the more versatile and unique nurse practitioner jobs to consider.
10. Clinical Research Nurse Practitioner
A clinical research nurse practitioner is a highly respected part of a clinical research team mainly comprised of physicians, nurses, and nurse practitioners. This specialty NP usually works in a large teaching hospital but can also work in universities and pharmaceutical companies. The clinical research nurse practitioner will conduct exams related to the study, document, review, and analyze reports and results.
11. Forensics Nurse Practitioner
Forensic nurse practitioners study criminal law and assist with crime scenes and assault victims. This type of NP often works in the ER to gather evidence of bodily injury crimes. You most likely will need to testify in court regularly and may be asked to present community education on domestic violence or child abuse.
This unique nurse practitioner job is not for the faint-hearted. However, a forensic nurse practitioner is an essential influence for those who have been abused or battered.
12. Aesthetic Nurse Practitioner
An aesthetic nurse practitioner, sometimes termed a cosmetic nurse, works with cosmetic and skin issues and treatments such as Botox injections and skin peels. This NP works as the primary provider in the clinic. Luckily, this specialty is one of the easiest NP programs
to gain acceptance. After following the steps to get certified
in this field, an aesthetic Nurse Practitioner can even own their clinic or spa.
13. Legal Consultant
A nurse practitioner working as a legal nurse consultant
or LNC analyses testimony and medical reports pertaining to cases involving injury or healthcare. They can also perform medical exams for the client. Additionally, legal nurse consultants serve as expert witnesses and provide testimony. Also, they can work for insurance companies, law firms, government agencies, and health care facilities.
14. Cruise Ship Nurse Practitioner
Do you enjoy exploring foreign or tropical destinations? A cruise ship nurse practitioner career may appeal to those who desire to travel. Many nurses may picture days off relaxing on a beach or exploring exciting local attractions while in port. While this is true, hours on duty may be long and tedious while at sea.
Cruise lines look for nurse practitioners with emergency room and cardiac experience. In addition to acute-care responsibilities, this specialty NP may perform x-rays and lab tests and assist with safety checks.
15. Mental Health Nurse Practitioner for Homeland Security ICE Unit
One of the more unique jobs for nurse practitioners in the Federal Government would be a Mental Health Nurse Practitioner employed by the ICE Health Services Corps
at the detention facilities. The Mental Health Nurse Practitioner provides psychiatric evaluation and counseling, and drug detoxification care to detainees in ICE custody.
This type of position could be an eye-opening experience that you will never forget and is undoubtedly a unique job for nurse practitioners.
16. Parish Nurse Practitioner
Parish nurse practitioners may own their community clinic based on their faith principles. This type of clinic operates similar to a local family practice but with the flexibility to incorporate religious beliefs and counseling to integrate both health and spirituality. Some parish nurse practitioners even do home visits.
17. University/College Student Health Center
A nurse practitioner with a background in adolescent and family health may enjoy a job working in a local university student health clinic. These NP's may prescribe medication, perform physical exams, lab tests, acute care, vaccinations, and counseling in addition to urgent care. A background in drug and alcohol abuse as well as common gynecologic issues and infection is beneficial.
18. Hospice Nurse Practitioner
A hospice nurse practitioner is not to be confused with the RN hospice nurse. A hospice nurse practitioner has a specific role within the hospice team. The NP is primarily the one to assess the patient and provide the physician with information to certify the patient for hospice services.
These empathetic nurse practitioners help keep a dying patient comfortable and pass on with dignity by being an integral part of the hospice team.
19. Homeless Population Nurse Practitioner
Nurse Practitioners help to fill a gap in medical care for the homeless. Access to a hospital or medical care for a homeless person can be challenging. Mobile health care units
staffed by nurse practitioners can provide direct medical services to the homeless population. Local community centers and homeless shelters are also ideal spaces for this type of specialty NP to work.
20. Sports Medicine Team
Do you enjoy sports or orthopedic medicine? If so, you may want to investigate a career as a sports medicine nurse practitioner. This specialty NP works with orthopedic physicians who specialize in sports-related injuries. Many sports medicine teams work with professional athletes and high school teams. Having a background in orthopedic surgery is a plus for this job.
Areas to work include sports venues, orthopedic practices, and clinics.
The Bottom Line
After reading this article, I think the answer to the question of "are there any unique jobs for nurse practitioners?" is obvious. Whether you are looking for a traditional NP job or something outside of the box, there are plenty of exciting choices for you. Even with the 20 most incredibly unique nurse practitioner job examples listed above, I am sure that there is an array of other unique options that should fit any NP's career preference. Lucky for you, the job market is waiting for you to find it!
Donna Reese MSN, RN, CSN
Donna Reese is a freelance nurse health content writer with 37 years nursing experience. She has worked as a Family Nurse Practitioner in her local community clinic and as an RN in home health, rehabilitation, hospital, and school nursing.