In the US you can become either a US Licensed Practical Nurse or a Licensed Vocational Nurse. To practise as one of these you need a license. First, the nurse’s education starts with completing a year’s program that must be accredited by the Board of Nursing in its own state. The types of organizations who offer these courses include hospitals, technical schools, community colleges or high schools. This program should consist of learning about appropriate subjects in the classroom, like Pharmacology, Nursing and Biology. Then there is also practical clinical experience to master, during which students should always be supervised. Passing this year’s program offers a Certificate in Practical Nursing to LPNs or LVNs. Taking the National Council Licensure Examination or the NCLEX-PN as it is also called, will give students the right to work in all states with the license they receive as a result of passing the exam. The pass rate for the exam is 70%.
To become a registered nurse, which is a step higher, LPNs and LVNs have to take a registered nurse education program. Apart from this option, LPNs and LVNs can rise through the ranks to become supervisors. There are a few major qualities that all nurses need to succeed in the profession. Nurses have to be compassionate, meaning they should enjoy caring for others. Interpersonal skills are important so that interacting with both patients and other medical staff is easy. Some stress that can arise from the job can be combatted by having the right kind of patience to deal with the situation. The job is often very detailed orientated, as it requires doing repetitive tasks in the right order to make sure patients get the right sort of treatment done in the right way. Communication skills are useful for explaining conditions to patients and other medical professionals, like doctors and nurses. There is a physical element to the job; nurses must have the stamina to bend over patients, lift patients and administer treatment.
When considering becoming a nurse in the US, it is essential to realize that the rules on getting a license to practise are dependent on the particular laws of each state. Transferring a licensure to a different state will involve adjusting to that state’s new rules for licensures. Above all, a student must have a visa that allows American students to study legally in the country whether that is a permanent or temporary visa. If a foreign student wishes to become a nurse in the US they must apply through the organization that offers the certification program called the Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools. The three parts of this program consists of an English proficiency test, an evaluation of credentials and an exam on nursing that lasts for one day. This nursing exam is a multiple choice test.
Studying a three year degree is another option for talented students who have passed high school exams, with advanced qualifications in Biology, English, Maths and Sciences. Clinical experience must be achieved through nursing students working for a certain amount of hours in psychiatry, obstetrics and paediatrics. Of course, this experience is most often got in local hospital placements.