Healthcare industry keeps expanding at a high rate hence creating an urgent need for more medical professionals. Registered nurses are in high demand due various reasons, which include an aging population, nurses going for retirement and development of the new technology. Considering all these factors together with the satisfaction that comes from assisting people, the merits of becoming a registered nurse outweighs the demerits.
- How You Can Become an RN
- What You Need to Know to Become an RN?
- Registered Nurse Career In-Depth
- Certified Nursing Assistants
- FAQ about Online RN Programs
- Why Should You Pursue BSN?
- What Should You Expect in Your BSN Degree Program?
- How Do You know that You’re Fit for RN programs?
- What Is the Accreditation of the RN Programs?
- LPN-RN Bridge Program
- Paramedic-RN Bridge Program
- Registered Nurse Anesthetist
- FAQ about Accelerated Nursing RN Programs
- How Registered Nurses Keep Up With New Trends in Nursing?
To become an RN or a registered nurse you need to take one of the three options in your education path and these are: a diploma in nursing from approved nursing program, a bachelor degree or an associate degree both in a nursing program. These programs are just the basic entry-level programs, which means they don’t require any previous nursing education. RN programs require a minimum of four academic years and not more than five years to graduate as a registered nurse. These programs also have a strong emphasis on science and research in addition to general education requirements of the nursing college.
Nursing programs recognize the importance of integrating knowledge from other related programs such as behavioral, social and biological sciences, which enable the students to develop necessary qualities of a registered nurse. Professional nursing requires the application of evidence-based practice, scientific knowledge, psychomotor skills, understanding the human behavior and application of various safety measures.
Nursing is indeed a dynamic endeavor that is continually evolving. For one to succeed as registered nurse, clinical reasoning, and critical thinking are necessary when it comes to assisting families, individuals and the larger population in coping with difficult challenges in our daily living associated with health or illness.
Nursing profession requires one to have the knowledge in:
- Normal human growth and development
- Basic human needs
- Actual/potential health problem
- Coping mechanisms that are used by individuals
- Effects of sex, age, religion, racial and cultural factors on the health needs
- Various ways by which a registered nurse can assist people to maintain health as well as cope with different health problems
- Management, life cycle, accountability and other concepts relevant to nursing programs are also embodied in the course.
All these concepts are taught through the entire nursing program.
Well, the duties of RNs depends on where they’re working. However, these duties include assisting physicians, providing care to patients, providing guidance and also leading campaigns on public health. A registered nurse can also expect to operate medical equipment and administering medications. RNs can take a medical specialty in their course as pediatric, neonatal, geriatric, surgical and emergency care. As a registered nurse expect to work in different shifts, which may be on permanent or rotating schedules. Emergency and overtimes hours are very unpredictable in this profession.
These are entry-level nurses who are looking forward to becoming registered nurses. CNAs or certified nursing assistants mostly provide dressing, helping with bathing, hands-on healthcare to people in medical settings and other basic activities in healthcare. CNAs normally work in hospitals, while the majority work in residential care facilities.
- Is it possible to become an RN (registered nurse) online?
Yes, you can earn diploma or associate’s degree online and qualify for the initial RN licensure. The online course is conducted through a hybrid program, which is a mixture of both online and classroom education.
- How does RN online program works?
You are required to complete a non-clinical part of the program through the online nursing college course. Thereafter, you will have your clinical requirements completed through a medical center near your home. Online classes are normally hosted through the college website where instructors post lecture materials and also assignments. Bulletin boards and other discussion forum helps students to either post comments or questions. Some lectures also designate specific times for online chat session with students. An online program is flexible since the students can log in and work at their own time.
- Will I be required to come to campus?
Well, some online nursing colleges may require nursing students pursuing their course online to spend a some days or weeks in campus, although no residency will be required.
- Can I complete the RN program at my own pace?
Some of the online degree programs are more flexible and students can complete their coursework at their own time while other programs that are affiliated with traditional universities require online student to maintain same quarter/semester schedule as other on-campus students. There are also colleges that allow students to accelerate their classes and degree programs.
- Can you start your RN online degree program at your own time?
This depends on the college you have enrolled since some allow self-paced and you can start any time while nursing schools have structured their degree programs like traditional programs. And if this is the case, then the nursing program will have a schedule start date.
- Will you get an academic advisor?
Well, if you have enrolled from an RN program online, it’s likely that you’ll work very closely with your academic advisor to help you plan your curriculum.
- Which nursing programs are offered online?
All programs from RN to BSN program to MSN degree are available online. Other institutions offer a number of advanced degrees and certificates for those who want to pursue nursing programs online.
- Do online colleges offer financial aid and scholarships?
Students pursuing online degrees can be eligible for certain types of financial aids and scholarships just like those student enrolled in other traditional programs.
If you already have the associate’s degree then the next logical step is to earn a BSN in case you are looking for career progression. The good news is that your BSN can be completed while you’re working. This means you can easily advance your nursing career without being worried about taking time off. BSN is available online and therefore earn it while working. If you’re planning to work in health care for some time, then earning your BSN should be your focus. This is a strategic move because there a big short of registered nurses with BSNs, which means you benefit from better salaries. Furthermore, holding a BSN will bring you closer to earning a masters degree and a doctorate. Also, it’s important to note that some hospitals do provide tuition reimbursement programs, meaning that if you want to advance your academics, your workplace can pay for it.
A BSN program incorporates both the coursework and clinical work into the curriculum. Some of the common topics that you will learn include biology, nutrition, anatomy, and physiology, among many other. In case you have already earned your associate’s degree, you have an option of joining any reputable nursing college and enroll for any of the RN programs or BSN programs available. The BSN program covers the following areas:
- Emergency Care
- Health Assessment
- Community, Family and Population-based Practice
- New Trends in Nursing
- Public Health
For you to determine if you’re good enough for BSN-RN programs, you need to consider your academic background. Here are the three types of paths most students follow to become certified registered nurse.
- Those aspiring to become RNs can attend 4 years at the nurse college or university.
- An RN pursuing bachelor’s degree in BSN program
- A student with a degree from a different can enroll for accelerated registered nurse program or BSN program.
Accreditation guarantees every nursing student that the program in recognized nationally, which means that the program meets the education standards required. Independent accrediting organization only register schools or colleges that have undergone a rigorous application process. Accreditation provides a gateway for students to qualify for financial aid eligibility. Furthermore, students who earn a nursing degree from accredited schools can easily apply for higher degree programs in other accredited nursing colleges.
For schools and colleges to be accredited it takes between five and ten years, and the time is different for each college. Therefore, you can check with schools if their RN programs are accredited. Another important element nursing students should check is whether the school is approved to prepare students for NCLEX, which is an examination body.
If you’re a licensed practical nurse and planning to transfer to become a registered nurse, then you can opt for LPN-RN bridge program. There are online courses available for those who are working in medical facilities. It’s also possible to get financial support from your employer to pursue RN program in case you’ve worked with your employer for many years. This course takes between 2 and 3 years and covers a wider area such as psychology, nutrition, liberal arts and behavior sciences. The LPN to RN programs also allows student accelerate or fast track, which means topics are not repeated. Once you have successfully completed the program, you can work in nursing homes, correctional facilities, private homes, health centers for disabled and large corporations.
For paramedics who are planning to grow to progress further in their nursing profession, they can opt for expanding their knowledge by going to RN bridge program. This program will take you 18-24 months to complete. The topics to expect include crisis care, human anatomy, general microbiology, psychology, infant nursing, pathophysiology and family nursing.
A certified nurse anesthetist is a licensed healthcare professional who works in a very demanding environment. Also called CRNA, these nurses administer anesthetics for all surgical cases. Becoming a registered nurse anesthetist is definitely a significant commitment. RN anesthesia programs are not available in all states, and therefore one may be required to travel to those states that offer these programs. Schools that offer these programs are also very competitive when selecting students and the best way to do it, is to prepare the strongest or detailed application which should include excellent transcripts, volunteerism and your experience in intensive care nursing.
A study has shown that there will be a need for more than a million new nurses by the year 2020 and nursing colleges are exploring ways to increase their capacity. One of the approaches is to offer accelerated degree program to non-nursing students wishing to pursue nursing programs.
Why go for accelerated registered nursing programs?
- The accelerated baccalaureate programs are the quickest route to acquire licensure to become a registered nurse for the adults students who have earned a bachelor degree in other disciplines.
- Fast-track baccalaureate programs normally take a short period to complete, which is between 11 and 18 months, while the accelerated masters degree course takes 3 years to complete.
What to expect from accelerated nurse programs?
- Accelerated baccalaureate programs are meant to accomplish many objectives within a short time by actually building on your previous learning experiences. Expect intense instructions and the courses are offered on full-time schedule without any breaks between the sessions. You will receive the similar number of clinical practice hours as those in traditional entry-level programs.
- The admission standards for fast-track programs are high since the RN programs require at least 3.0 GPA, followed by a thorough pre-screening process. Administrators will shortlist the students who can flourish in this challenging environment after a rigorous identifying process. Those who qualify for accelerated nursing programs are advised NOT to work since the programs are quite intense in order to meet the degree requirements.
- Both the fast-track baccalaureate and master’s degree programs in nursing show the ability students to succeed in college or university.
Can you receive financial aid if you’re in accelerated programs?
- Well, there is a limited financial aid for those students who are enrolled in accelerated baccalaureate and master’s degree programs. But, there many practice settings who have partnered with schools and colleges, and they’re offering tuition repayment to nurse graduates as a way to increase the number of qualified nurses.
- Healthcare systems, hospitals and a number of other practice settings are forming the partnership with schools to help ease the financial burden. Some of the health care systems supporting nurse students include Carondelet Health Network, Tenet Healthcare, University of Missouri Healthcare, and Duke University Health-System, among others.
Registered nurses attend workshops and conferences for them stay current with the ever-changing nursing trends, which helps to improve patient care. The meetings can occur at their places of work, convention centers or resorts. Professional nursing organizations, which includes American Nurses Association usually sponsor 2 or 3 days annual conferences. These meetings also help nurses to network with others.