CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) — A relatively new venture continues to create more small businesses in West Virginia.

When you think about nurses, we’re used to seeing them in hospitals or the doctor’s office, but now, that’s changing. A growing number are now going out as solo practitioners.

The Center for Nurse Entrepreneurship helps nurses to start their own businesses. While nurses have medical skills, most don’t have backgrounds in finance, marketing, or legal knowledge to launch self-employment. That’s where the “Future of Nursing West Virginia” steps in.

“Entrepreneurship is very common in West Virginia. the majority of our economy is small businesses. But nurses are underrepresented, really across the nation, in terms of owning their own businesses,” said Laure Marino, Project Coordinator at The Center for Nurse Entrepreneurship.

The legislature expanded the duties nurses could perform a few years ago, and that’s why some of these new business were launched. Some are involved in substance abuse treatment, while other focus on mental health or house calls.

The state now has more than 100 nurse-owned businesses, and the numbers are growing. For more information go to the Future of Nursing WV website.

The center also hopes this will attract more young people into the nursing profession. Right now, every state in the nation is facing a critical shortage of nurses.

Laure Marino will also be a guest this weekend on “Inside West Virginia Politics.”