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Sunday, July 1, 2007

Become a Registered Nurse

Become a Registered NurseWhen a family member or friend becomes ill, are you the first person to step up to play nurse? Do you thrive on caring for people in their time of need? If you have an empathetic personality and aren't squeamish about illness or injury, you might consider a career as a registered nurse (RN).

Registered Nursing in a Nutshell
There are an estimated 2.4 million registered nurses in the US,
which makes nursing the largest career among medical health professions. This is because registered nurses perform a wide variety of medical duties, including treating patients, educating the public about health issues, operating medical machinery and providing emotional support to patients and their families. RNs are, quite literally, the medical Jacks and Janes of all trades.

Education Requirements for Registered Nurses
There are three basic paths to registered nursing:

A Bachelor's of Science in Nursing degree (BSN), which takes four years to complete.

An Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN), which takes from two to three years to earn.
A diploma, which is administered by certain hospitals after three years of training.
Individuals with BSNs generally have greater opportunities for career advancement

Once you complete one of these approved nursing programs, you must pass the NCLEX-RN, a national licensing exam, in order to earn your nursing license. Thereafter, periodic renewal of your RN license is required.

Day in the Life of a Registered NurseWhile there are many fields for nurses to specialize in, the list can be broken down into a few major categories: work setting and treatment type; disease, injury or condition; organ or body system type; or population.

For example, trauma nurses work in emergency rooms to treat patients with life-threatening conditions, while transplant nurses monitor patients who have undergone organ transplants, and neuroscience nurses work with patients who suffer from nervous system dysfunctions. Nurses may also cater their work to a particular sector of the population, such as neonatology nurses, who administer care to infants.

Regardless of your specialty, most of your day will be spent walking or standing. You will typically work 40 hours a week in a very clean, well-kept environment, but your schedule will dictated by your work setting. If you care for the elderly in 24-hour care homes, for instance, your might be required to work nights, weekends and holidays. You may even be required to be "on call" to work on short notice.

Job Growth for Registered Nurses
This is one of the fastest growing careers available. Registered nursing jobs are expected to grow much faster than average for all occupations through 2014
. In fact, registered nurses are projected to create the second largest number of new jobs among all occupations, as baby boomers reach retirement age and demand more medical care.

Get Your Nursing Degree Today You Can Start Here!

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