Are You Considering Being A Self-Employed Nurse?

Are You Considering Being A Self-Employed Nurse?

Nursing is a growing career with a proliferation of opportunities to be explored. A traditional hospital setting has its limitations for nursing personnel. Many nurses strike out on their own due to a proliferation of restrictive regulations and protocols that stifle independent thought and creativity. There are many abusive practices at play in traditional hospitals. The self-employed nurse enjoys many advantages that a traditionally employed nurse cannot: You work in the specialty of your choosing doing only what you love to do. You determine your hours and who you will work with. You can work from home or in a traditional office setting. You have greater flexibility and opportunities for creativity. You set your own financial and nursing goals.

Possible Career Paths

As you contemplate moving toward career independence, there are a myriad of avenues to be explored such as:

*Private duty nurse in traditional facility or in private homes.

*An expert consultant or a forensic RN for the legal arena.

*Wellness coach which is popular with thriving baby boomers.

*Nurse practitioner for in-store clinics in retail stores that are growing in popularity.

*An educator in scholastic facilities and trainer for courses such as CPR.

*Consultant for problem solving, insurance fraud, and cost cutting measures.

Some of the Realities

If you are considering setting out on your own there are some questions to ask yourself. These are some realities to be considered for a responsible change from the hospital setting:

How will you market yourself? What makes you special? How do you feel about self-promotion? Do you have a network of contacts to tap into? Do you have a sustain system in place? What licenses and permits do you need? What kind of record keeping needs to be done? Can you keep the records or do you need help? How much money do you need to start your business? Do you have that money and if you do not, how will you get it? What insurance do you need? What about healthcare insurance for you and your family? Where will you base your business; in your home or in an office? Can you live with the inherent uncertainty that accompanies independent contractor’s paychecks?


If you are an independent contractor, it is basic to keep accurate records of your earnings and expenses. You are required to file estimated taxes quarterly if you will be paying more than $1000 yearly in taxes. You will use a 1040 ES Form for this purpose and when you file for the year, you use a schedule C or C-EZ as an preference for your 1040 form.


The career path for self-employed nurses is an exciting and rewarding one and there will always be a need for experienced nurses in the community. After much soul searching, you can decide to be an independent contractor and pursue the many directions your independence can take you. A good idea in the beginning is to interview nurses who are working independently for their input as to career path direction and experiences they have had. Groups such as Score (affiliated with the Small Business Administration) help individuals starting their own businesses by providing input based on experience and they cover all aspects of a start-up. A little research before you take the drop will insure you of success.

Copyright (c) 2012 Nurse Entrepreneur Network

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