There is always a dire need for registered nurses. Insurance companies, hospitals, clinics, schools, camps, and other places have continual openings for nurses. The option for working as a medical researcher or consultant is also available for registered nurses. Unfortunately, even though there are over three million registered nurses in the country, the US has suffered from a shortage of nurses in the last decade. The current shortage is set to get even worse in the coming years. Not enough nurses can be found to fill the positions available, although nursing is a job many would desire to have. If this position interests you, the field is ready and waiting.
There is a wide scope of responsibilities associated with registered nurses in the medical field. Entry level nurses in hospitals and clinics are generally assigned to patient care. Nurses with more advanced educational qualifications can go on to work in special departments such as pediatrics or maternity wards.
With higher qualification, an RN can even assume many of the duties a doctor normally performs. Nurse practitioners are allowed to diagnose patients and prescribe treatments. Nurse practitioners can choose to work alongside doctors or alone in their own practices.
Your education determines how fast you’ll make headway and what position you will achieve as a registered nurse. In order to become a registered nurse, you are required to have a college education prior to taking the licensing exam. This means that you can apply with a master’s degree, bachelor’s degree, three-year diploma, or associate’s degree in nursing or a related field. The more advanced degrees will open your future to more career possibilities.
Good grades can help you land your first position. Diligent studies in your high school biology and chemistry courses will help you greatly while earning your nursing degree. Diligence and focus will also help you make fast headway. Before choosing a school for your nursing degree, verify the schoolís accreditation status with the Nursing Accrediting Commission before proceeding.
The mandatory exam that you need to clear to become a qualified nurse is the NCLEX-RN exam or the federal nursing exam. Periodic license renewal is mandatory in all states, sometimes requiring continuing education classes. If you are already a registered nurse in one state and you move across state lines, ask the Nursing Board if you need to retest.
As a registered nurse, you may encounter difficulties finding the right job. You may also find that the responsibilities associated with your profession can be pretty overwhelming. Nursing is a far cry from, for example, acting, where a minor slip-up on stage is not going to ruin a life. Mistakes in nursing, on the other hand, can have extremely dire ramifications. Even after you complete your education, you might not get a job right away due to a lack of experience and the importance of the work. Don’t get discouraged. The best career advice to an aspiring nurse is to get the most experience and exposure possible related to your field. Take advantage of volunteer nursing programs at clinics, hospitals, and health-related NGOs. You can also volunteer in international medical missions in developing countries. Most of the smaller missions will accept you fresh out of school, but the larger ones will probably want at least some experience.