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Nursing Careers Increase to 2050 in Robotics, Rehabilitation, Aerospace and Travel Medicine

Updated on March 2, 2017
Patty Inglish, MS profile image

Degrees in medicine, psychology & sports. 20+ yrs research/treatment in allopathic & alternative medicines, brain studies, space medicine.

Who will be the first nurse on the moon?

Appollo 11 Moonwalk.
Appollo 11 Moonwalk. | Source

RN Jobs Increase Since 2005

450% Increase in Registered Nursing Jobs 2005 - 2016

Increase in numbers of job listings has been continuous overall, with marked increases in the 2010s.
Increase in numbers of job listings has been continuous overall, with marked increases in the 2010s. | Source

Largest US Advertisers for Registered Nurses

  1. Supplemental Health Care
  2. Advanced Travel Nursing
  4. Sunbelt Staffing
  5. Tailored Healthcare Staffing
  6. Ascension
  7. Maxim Healthcare Services
  8. TravelMax Nursing
  9. PSA Healthcare
  10. Favorite Healthcare Staffing
  11. Fresenius Medical Care
  12. MedPro Healthcare Staffing
  13. Core Medical Group
  14. Aureus Medical Group
  15. HCA and HCA Manorcare
  16. Providence Health & Services
  17. Catholic Health Initiatives
  18. UCLA Health
  19. Tailored Healthcare Staffing
  20. Cedars-Sinai Los Angeles

Access the series of links below for descriptions and reviews of the types of nursing and related careers available now and in the near future. The American Space Medicine Association link provides a list of scholarships, training programs, and other much-needed information for a successful career in aerospace or undersea health, medicine, or research.

High Demand Jobs

An extreme demand for RN licensed nurses in the USA exerted itself from 2014 - 2015, as shown on the graph above. As of June 2015, the USA has at least 1,200,000 openings for RNs advertised. In late 2016, over a million positions were open as well.

Nursing to the Year 2050

The US Federal Department of Labor's Occupational Outlook states that Registered Nursing is the largest healthcare field existing today, with 2.6 million jobs already filled in 2010 - 2011. The job market for RNs is forecasted to increase by 22% in the decade 2008 - 2018, which is much faster than other occupations on average.

Nursing shortages exist in some areas of the United States, but employers are attacking this problem with the several attractions of Travel Nursing (see link below). These features include travel expenses, higher pay, increased benefits, and rent/mortgage payment for the working period of 3 to 12 months.

Travel Nurses are sometimes able to be hired in their own cities with these added benefits, because of shortages at some hospitals; while others are able to be posted in exotic locations such as the Hawaiian Islands and other sites known for travel.

Required education will usually involves a Associate's or Bachelor's Degree or a Nursing School Certificate, advanced nursing positions require a Master's Degree. At the same time, one can begin as a Nursing Aide and study all the way up to Physician/MD, sometimes with tuition reimbursement from a local hospital or clinic employer (see links under "Training", below).

Robotics and Nursing

Robotics: Bicentennial People

If you have seen the film or read the book Bicentennial Man by the late author Sir Arthur C. Clarke, You may recall that nurses attended each of the very aged that were near the 200th birthday mark in a future century. Sir Arthur predicted in a timeline he prepared in the mid-to-late 20th Century that immortality would be achieved by medical science sometime after the year 2100.

While human DNA is programmed to an age-limit of 113 years give or take a few, immortality is still unreachable through physical means for us homo sapiens. However, lifespans are adding years to themselves - and still a few more for females than for male cohorts.

Robotics is Combining With the Human Body

Bicentennial Man
Bicentennial Man

Stars Robin Williams as a robot who gradually earns the legal of status of human after 200 years of service to others. I have watched this movie many times and see more aspects of it that today's medicine is approaching with each viewing.


Aging and Humanity In the Field of Nursing

The Boomers are retiring in greater numbers in the 2010s, but the Millennials almost match their number as a cohort and will retire in large numbers beginning in the 2030s. Nothing is limiting the growth of the human population, even given disaster, illness, and abortion, so population numbers are set to increase and the openings for healthcare providers needed with them.

Bicentennial Man and its spinoffs and inspired works of other authors bring to mind a possibility of human-robotic hybrids. Sci-fi fans see "Borg", but so many military personnel are returning from Iraq and Afghanistan in the 2010s with three limbs replaced by electronic prosthesis that the possibility is enduring. Already, medical science experiments with building electronics into the interior of limb stumps with promise for additional advances.

Rehabilitation Medicine

Medical Advances in Biology

Regardless of the Borg, our more reachable medical advances to the year 2100 - including new cosmetic surgeries, artificial bones and organs, growing new organs, and advanced dental implants - will all require additional nursing positions.

Nursing jobs of all types will increase throughout the 21st Century, not only because of the aging and increasing populations on Earth, but also as a result of exploration into outer space and to the bottoms of our oceans. These extreme environments require advanced medical care and prevention.

As we search for additional resources and living spaces, the need for medical and health related services will increase proportionately. In addition, new fields of nursing will emerge, like that of Space Medicine that began to congeal in the 1990s.

Underwater Medicine is sure to follow and increasing numbers of projects send scientists and explorers deeper into the oceans each year. An example of that already is Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy, for which specialist nurses are in high demand.

Prostethics and Paralympic Events

Cpl. Brian Wilhelm uses a mono-ski at the annual National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic, April 4-9 at Snowmass Village CO. Capt. David Rozelle, behind him, lost his right foot after a land mine explosion.
Cpl. Brian Wilhelm uses a mono-ski at the annual National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic, April 4-9 at Snowmass Village CO. Capt. David Rozelle, behind him, lost his right foot after a land mine explosion. | Source

Aerospace Medicine

Inside a space station, life is full of adjustments.
Inside a space station, life is full of adjustments. | Source

Undersea Medicine

Undersea medicine is much like aerospace medicine in that it is drawing additional nurses into its ranks of new jobs. In the US Navy, particularly increasing opportunities exist. Undersea and aerospace medicines are related in the need for treatment among the hazards of exploration and work, and the differences of conditions suffered in the air and under water when compared to those of patients on land.

Naval Undersea Medical Institute


Best American Nursing Schools

Top Nursing Schools In the USA

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    As of 2009, a worldwide shortage in health related professionals at all levels had been savaging the populations in many nations, but clearly in America. Our country had formerly been called The Land of...

  • Top 5 Hot Nursing Schools in the San Francisco Bay Area

    In the latest evaluation of top nursing schools in the country, the complex provided at the University of California - San Francisco (UCSF) appears on several Top 10 Lists in nursing specialties.

© 2011 Patty Inglish


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    • Happyboomernurse profile image

      Gail Sobotkin 5 years ago from South Carolina

      Fascinating, well documented hub on where nursing careers and medicine are heading in the future.

      The current economy has many of my nursing (boomer) peers remaining in their nursing jobs longer than they expected and I even know some boomer nurses who used to work part-time but are now working fulltime so the real shortage has been delayed for a little while.

      Thanks for the interesting look at the future. Rated up, useful, awesome and interesting.

    • Patty Inglish, MS profile image

      Patty Inglish 4 years ago from North America

      Nursing jobs at all levels are available across most of the USA in 2013. Travel Nursing is still a lucrative option with increased pay and a lot of perks.

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