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Nurse First News Blog

Male Nurses: What You Need to Know

Posted January 21, 2020

The nursing profession needs people that are dedicated to the care of others – male or female.  There is a perception that nursing is only a female profession, but that couldn’t be further from the truth.  Males bring just as much to the table as their female counterparts.  Nursing is not about your gender, but about how much care and love you put into the profession. This blog will dissect how to become a male nurse, why men should be nurses, what it is like to be a male nurse and the pros and cons of male nursing.  It’s time to throw away the “male nurses” stereotypes and follow your passion…

How to Become a Male Nurse?

The steps to becoming a male nurse are exactly the same as they are for female nurses.  You can read complete details in our “How to Become a Registered Nurse” guide – but as a quick reference, you must complete the following steps to work as a nurse:

  1. Complete an accredited RN program
  2. Take and pass the NCLEX exam
  3. Obtain a state license

As soon as you have completed each of those steps, you’re ready to apply for your first nursing position!  The fun and exciting world of nursing is upon you…

Why Men Should Be Nurses 

Nursing is a profession in high demand, and the healthcare field always needs more phenomenal nurses. According to the U.S.Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment for Registered Nurses is set to grow 12%from 2018-2028 – an increase that is much more rapid than the average occupation.  Nursing is a rewarding, challenging and lucrative nursing career path.  Speaking of lucrative, registered nurses can expect an average salary of about $75,000/year. Of course your salary will greatly depend on your specialty, state and facility – but ultimately, the sky’s the limit.  As a nurse gains more experience, management opportunities will arise, which in turn will increase your yearly salary.  It is cited on Indeed.com that the average national base salary for a Nurse Manager is around $92,000/year.  

Whatever path in nursing you decide to take, you are sure to find fulfillment. The field has a variety of specialties to choose from, whether you want to feed your adrenaline side in the emergency room or delicately care for the elderly in a long term care setting. Whatever your passion or motivation, you will find it as a registered nurse.  At the end of the day, gender doesn’t define a great nurse.  It is the kindness, compassion, empathy, drive and motivation to do right by your patients and their family members that makes a phenomenal nurse. 

What Is It Like to Be a Male Nurse?

You have accepted an offer at a hospital and as you anxiously await your start date, numerous questions roll through your mind, such as:

  • Will I be the only male nurse on my floor?
  • How will I be received on my first day?
  • Will I get weird comments from patients about being a male nurse?
  • Will I have to explain my career choice to everyone I encounter?

As you walk into your first day, more than likely all of these anxious thoughts will soon dissipate.  Nursing is nursing no matter your gender, age, race, ethnicity, etc.  When you begin your career as a male nurse,you’ll quickly realize that your team has one main goal in mind: providing excellent patient care.  Being that you are 12% of the population that holds the title of “man nurses”, you’ll notice that conversations will spark about your career choice.  This is a great opportunity for you to share your passion for the profession, along with creating a relational moment between you and your patient.   

With any career, your experience is truly what you make of it.  It is crucial to have a positive, helpful and team player attitude on your floor and throughout the entire facility.  The vibe you give is the vibe you’ll get. 

Pros and Cons of Being Male Nurses

Pros

Eliminate Stereotypes

Nurses are not just females, say it with me!  Be proud and confident in your career choice. You are a kind, caring, compassionate, empathetic and extremely intelligent person. The world also needs fantastic male nurses.  Nowadays, males enter the field of the nursing profession are essentially eliminating gender stereotypes in the field.  It’s time to make man nurses more commonplace!

Uniform Only

While your banker friends are trying to decide on their shirt and tie for the day – you get to slip on a comfortable set of scrubs!  Not only is your work attire comfortable, but you can choose a pair of shoes that feel like you’re walking on clouds. Not every profession has this luxury – count your blessings! If you’re still looking for the “right” scrubs, we suggest checking out FIGS. According to their website the uniforms are made with Technical Comfort, which is design, performance and comfort all rolled into one. 

Cons

Stigma 

The stigma around the nursing profession is that it is a caring type of role, and therefore, should be an occupation held only by women.  It is difficult to believe that gender bias in specific occupations still exists today.  There is a perception that men that go into nursing did so because they couldn’t get into school of nursing.  That stereotype could not be further from the truth. When you look at the other side of the coin, women take on roles as physicians, accountants and police officers – all jobs that were once dominated by the male population.  There isn’t room in our society for gender bias – especially when it comes to people following their career aspirations.  Man nurses are strong, intelligent, caring and compassionate additions to the profession. 

The Doc Is Here

Gender bias is in full effect with this one! Some of your patients might assume that you are the doctor because you’re a male. Try to roll with the punches on this one and take pride in your incredible abilities as a nurse.  Stand proud!

Conclusion

Male or female great nurses are not defined by their gender.  Great nurses are defined by their unique characteristics and undeniable love for their profession. To quote Aristotle, “where the needs of the world and your talents cross, there lies your vocation.”    

References

https://www.medelita.com/blog/benefits-of-being-male-nurse/
https://www.statisticstats.com/health/male-nursing-statistics/

https://www.thegypsynurse.com/blog/men-in-travel-nursing-pros-cons-of-being-a-male-nurse/
https://www.medprostaffing.com/the-rise-of-the-male-nurse/

https://www.fastaff.com/blog/male-nurses-dont-carry-purses-top-10-reasons-why-its-great-be-male-nurse
https://online.maryville.edu/nursing-degrees/top-5-benefits-of-teamwork-in-nursing/
https://minoritynurse.com/male-nurses-overcoming-the-stigma/
https://www.thejobnetwork.com/why-men-should-consider-becoming-a-nurse/
https://www.indeed.com/career/nurse-manager/salaries

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