Critical Care Nursing Careers with BSN

Is It worth Pursuing a BSN to Work in a Critical Care Unit?

RNs who have their BSN degrees are among the most sought after nursing professionals. As health care becomes more technical, and sicker people are surviving longer; the job outlook for critical care nurses is consistently expanding. If you ever want to work as a travel nurse, becoming a critical care nurse will afford you opportunities to travel throughout the world.

Critical Care Nurse Salary

Critical care nurses are among the most highly paid nursing professionals. New critical care nurses may start at over $45,000 annually. In large metropolitan areas, experienced critical care nurses may earn over $90,000 per year. However according to the median is $86,500 roughly depending on the education level coinciding with CCRN certification. Since critical care nursing requires an exceptionally high level of expertise, orientation programs for new critical care nurses are extensive.  Many facilities offer substantial sign on bonuses for nurses who commit to work in intensive care for a specified length of time.

If I Become a Critical Care Nurse, Does That Limit the Types of Units That I Can Work In?

Absolutely not! While all critical care nurses provide services for the sickest of the sick; critical care units are diverse. If you work in a general intensive care unit you will likely care for people of all ages who suffer from a broad array of illnesses and injuries.

You may prefer to specialize in a particular type of critical care setting. There are specialty intensive care units for children, newborns, burn victims, and people who have suffered neurological damage. Specialty intensive care nurses provide services to people who are undergoing organ transplants, or having cardiac surgery.  Opportunities exist in general hospitals as well as specialty hospitals, such as facilities for pediatric patients.

I Am an LPN, but I Think That I May Enjoy a Career as a Critical Care Nurse

The first step towards becoming a critical care nurse is to further your education. You need to become an RN. More and more health care facilities require that nurses possess a BSN as well.

Check out educational opportunities in your area and online. You may be able to take advantage of programs which afford opportunities to complete your degree at an accelerated rate. You are given credit for your LPN education and experience.

  • LPN to RN/BSN Online - Achieve Test Prep

    *Must Be a LPN/LVN

    LPNs earn your ADN or BSN degree online in up to 1/2 the time and cost of traditional programs. With No Waiting List to get started, Free Books, and Low Cost financing options available, this is the perfect way for LPNs, LVNs, and Paramedics to earn your Associates Degree in Nursing and your RN license. Our convenient, instructor led test-out program allows you to learn at an accelerated pace and earn college credit-by-examination which then is eligible to be transferred to an ACEN accredited nursing school or 100's of universities nationwide.

If you are currently enrolled in a BSN program, find out if you can complete a practicum in an intensive care unit. If that is not an option, attempt to do your practicum on a unit which accepts patients who have just been released from intensive care; such as a cardiac step down unit.

Now Is the Time to Start Working towards Your BSN

The demand for critical care nurses is always high.  You will always have job security, be on the front line of saving lives, and experience a fast paced, exciting career. Further your education so that you can reap the rewards that critical care nursing provides. Get insight into 2015 LPN to BSN programs.

Critical Care Nurse Organizations & Related Sites

Last Updated/Verified: Jul 2, 2023