Nurses provide care and services that are essential to the lives of millions of people. And while the job outlook for nurses is promising, that doesn’t mean that nurses always earn enough to reach their financial goals. If you’re a nurse who recently experienced a pay cut due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there’s even more financial pressure to make ends meet.
There are plenty of ways to earn extra money as a nurse, and many of them only require skills you already possess. Nurses possess a unique skill set that makes specific jobs off-limits for other workers. With a bit of digging, you can find ways to make extra money doing what you already know how to do.
Keep reading to learn more about ways to make extra money as a nurse within the medical profession and other opportunities that exist.
11 Ways to make extra money as a nurse
The obvious way to make extra money is to seek out opportunities that already exist in the nursing profession. Yes, that means more hours doing what you already do, but it probably also means you don’t have to learn a bunch of new skills or earn extra certifications. Here are some ways to make money on the side as a nurse.
1. Pick up extra shifts
This may seem obvious, but your best option might be to simply pick up more nursing shifts on your off days. Depending on where you work, you might be able to pick up extra shifts, especially during shortages.
2. Become a telehealth nurse
One of the fastest-growing services within the healthcare industry is telehealth. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), telehealth visits increased by 50% in the first quarter of 2020 compared to the same period the previous year. In the age of social distancing, telehealth has gone from an alternative way to receive medical advice to a vital way to receive medical care, safely.
Working as a telehealth nurse involves providing nursing care remotely via video conferencing or by phone.
3. Sign up to be an immunization nurse
Another way to make extra money as a nurse is to sign up to work as an immunization nurse. Every year hospitals, physician offices, and other medical settings run immunization clinics to give seasonal flu shots. Right now, the need is even more significant with the release of several COVID-19 vaccines.
Some health departments are creating volunteer programs using retired medical professionals, students, and first responders to give vaccine shots. Your employer might be looking for extra help as more shots are rolled out across the U.S.
Nurse side gigs
4. Try your hand at medical transcription
Medical transcription involves converting medical audio files from doctors into written form. You’ll need a computer, access to the internet, and listening and writing skills.
In some instances, you may need to get certified as a healthcare documentation specialist (CHDS) or a registered healthcare documentation specialist (RHDS) transcriptionist (RMT). This involves passing a certification exam.
5. Become a first aid course instructor
Nurses can also get certified to teach first aid and CPR to other people. Instructor training is available through the American Red Cross. Red Cross instructors teach lifesaving skills to more than nine million people each year, so there’s always a need for more licensed instructors.
6. Spend your summer working as a camp nurse
Another place to look for temporary work is at summer and day camps. Most camps require a camp nurse present during the camp season. This might not be something you can do on a day off since many camps run several days in a row.
7. Become a certified medical coder
Medical coders work in healthcare settings transferring claims into standardized medical codes for insurance reimbursement. Medical coding programs are in-person and online, with certification available through several associations.
8. Work as a home health aide
There’s always a demand for workers to provide health and personal care services to people at home. The best part is that you don’t need any extra training or certifications to work as a home health aide or caregiver. Tasks often fall outside of healthcare, like cooking, providing transportation, and general care.
9. Get into freelance healthcare writing
Being a nurse gives you an insider perspective and unique insights into the healthcare profession. You can use your experience and education to write healthcare content for health websites, blogs, and more.
Freelance writing is a great side job for nurses because you can do it at any time and from anywhere. You can create an online portfolio to use as a vehicle to land freelance clients.
10. Start a side business as a health coach
People are obsessed with trying to live healthier lives. As a nurse, you may better understand what it takes to improve health and wellness. You can use your experience and education to start your own health coach business. Health coaches assist clients in setting health goals and creating action plans to achieve them. Depending on the type of health coaching you want to do, you might need to get certified.
11. Sign up to be a legal nurse consultant
Legal nurse consultants provide medical insights and advice to law firms, insurance companies, government offices, and other legal entities. Becoming a legal nurse consultant also opens you up to be used as an expert witness in legal cases.
Certification is not always required but is available through organizations such as the American Association of Legal Nurse Consultants (AALNC).
Investing in real estate as a nurse
Real estate investing is another way to make extra money no matter what you do for a living.
Whether it’s flipping houses or purchasing and renovating properties to rent, there is money to be made in real estate. However, there’s also an investment of time and upfront costs to consider.
This side hustle’s a great way to grow wealth, but it’s also not something that happens overnight. If you don’t possess the necessary skills or knowledge, you might have to rely on others to get your property to sell or rent. Do your homework to determine if it’s a viable option before jumping into the real estate game.
What about side hustles like DoorDash for nurses?
If you want a break from working in the healthcare industry, you can always make money in the gig industry as a driver. You can drive people around working for Uber or Lyft. You can also deliver food for services like DoorDash, Uber Eats, Postmates and GrubHub. Another option is becoming a shopper through Instacart or Shypt.
Unfortunately, most gig economy jobs don’t pay as well as what’s already available in the healthcare field. You’re likely to make more money picking up a few extra nursing shifts than driving around town on your off days. Plus, being a driver puts added wear and tear on your personal vehicle. The best way to make the most of your time and maximize your earnings is by putting your existing nursing skills to use.
Start making more money as a nurse
Like many professions, there are endless ways to make extra money as a nurse. You’re only limited by your imagination, although some side gigs might require additional certifications or skills.
Having a side gig can help you reach financial goals faster, like paying down your nursing student loans, saving for retirement or buying a house. It’s also a great way to put your skills to use or learn new skills along the way.
Are you a nurse with a side hustle that earns you extra income? Let us know what you’re doing to make extra money so that other nurses can do the same.