Published On: Thu, Mar 19th, 2020

Why Florida Is One of the Best States to Practice Nursing

Who wouldn’t want to live in the Sunshine State where there is literally something for everyone of all ages, all genders, and all walks of life? From Spring Break on Fort Lauderdale Beaches to the many spectacular theme parks and activities the state is so proud of, there is always something to do and see and a climate that is the main attraction. If you are considering a career in nursing, this is just the beginning of all that Florida has to offer, and the reason why it is one of the best states to practice nursing. Here are several other important considerations you might want to examine.

An Ever-Growing Geriatric Population

Although your specialty in nursing may not be geriatrics, the one thing to consider is job stability going forward. If there is one thing that can be said of nursing in Florida, there will always be a need for those professionals who are willing to care for an aging population. Most people don’t realize that Florida is second only to New Mexico in the volume of retirees settling in the state from other regions of the country. There is no secret to the fact that aging brings with it a number of health concerns which necessitates more frequent visits to doctors and hospitals. If you are looking for a career with a solid future in Florida, nursing would be something to consider.

A Large Global Community

Another thing which can truthfully be said of Florida is that there is a large number of international travelers and residents who comprise a large portion of the population at any given moment. While those of Hispanic heritage are the largest group of internationals, there are few (if any!) nationalities not represented in a statewide population of 21.3 million people as of the latest census estimations in 2018. At that time, the population was comprised of:

  • 74.7% white residents
  • 21.4 % Hispanic
  • Pacific Islanders and Asians rounding out the remainder

This, in and of itself, brings with it a concern for the number of global pandemics the state faces and with that, a need for highly skilled and trained medical professionals. As a leading national port of entry with International Airports and literally hundreds of cruises docking along the shoreline, there is always a concern such as the current novel coronavirus which is yet to be contained. Nurses will always be in high demand in a state that sees such an influx of global travelers and immigrants.

Quality of Life for Families

Referring back to the sheer number of attractions in the state, of which theme parks and beaches rank highly, Florida is seen as a great state in which to raise a family. Many nursing positions are based on longer days with shorter work weeks, making this ideal for family life. On off days there is much to do with the kids so that there will always be a healthy balance between work and family life. This is one of the leading reasons why so many young families opt to live in the Sunshine State. Yes, nursing is a demanding career, but Florida provides ample opportunities for leisurely activities as well.

A Perfect Environment for Transitions

However, some young professionals find that there are not the opportunities for the careers in which they had thought to pursue. Also, many find they are no longer interested in the degree they had already achieved or are looking to transition to another career. With nursing so highly needed in the state, it can be practical to pursue an accelerated BSN online from a nationally renowned school like Baylor University in which much of the course work is done online with only clinicals and a 2-week on-campus visit required. Those who already have a Bachelor of Science need only take the 62 required hours to transition their degree which will all but assure them a job with a future in a state with great medical needs. 

In much of the state, the cost of living is just at the median of the national average, making this an ideal environment for transition.

A Look at Florida Taxation

Another major appeal of working as a nurse in Florida is the fact that there is no state income tax to be withdrawn. As one of only nine states that don’t withhold state income tax, Florida is extremely appealing to professionals such as nurses that can earn a rather healthy salary. Florida also doesn’t tax food at grocery stores which keeps the cost of living lower as well. Many states like neighboring Georgia do tax food items, so this is just one more way to stretch that attractive income even further.

An Abundance of Hospitals and Clinics

Then there is the fact that Florida has 349 hospitals, of which 155 are privately endowed entities and 45 government institutions. With that many hospitals in the state, it isn’t a leap to believe there will always be work within a hospital setting if so desired. However, there is an abundance of private physicians and clinics in which to work, and with a state having such a wide scope of demographics, there is always a need for nurses with a specialty.

Putting It All Together

In summing up all the reasons why Florida is one of the best states to practice nursing, perhaps the main allure is the fact that there is always something fun and affordable to do on vacations and days off. Many states don’t offer the sheer number of activities to enjoy, which makes working a full-time job more frustrating than it needs to be. Much of the time is spent wishing and waiting for annual vacations which can have a significantly negative impact on job satisfaction and performance.

It is also good to remember that Florida has a large international population with a large number of elderly patients who will always be in need of medical care. If you are seeking a state in which to enjoy a long and fruitful career in nursing, Florida should be at the top of the list. Not only will there always be a need for your services, but there will also always be something to keep you entertained and pampered on days off. Who could want for more? 

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