CNA certification as a step Toward Becoming an RN
Registered Nursing (RN) is the largest healthcare occupation. As per the findings of BLS (May 2011), there are more than 2.7 million jobs for RNs. If you want to become an RN, you might want to start your career by achieving entry level Nursing Assistant Certification (CNA).
CNA to RN Bridge Programs
Getting CNA certification is the shortest way to becoming an RN. In order to become an RN, you can then undergo a 2 year associate degree program from an accredited community college. But if you want to become an RN without going the CNA route, you need to undergo a 3-year hospital based RN diploma or a bachelor of science in nursing from a university or college. The duration of this program is 4 years.
The associate and bachelor degree programs follow the same course work, which include studies in nursing, anatomy, nutrition, chemistry, physiology, social sciences and biology. Both these programs require basic college courses in history, humanities, English and mathematics.
If you undergo a Bachelor degree program, you need to study leadership and management additionally. Besides classroom studies, RNs must also acquire clinical experience and laboratory work. Teaching hospitals that conduct diploma programs often work with a community college or local university for providing required classroom work to the students.
After completing the course successfully, you can apply for a license. State board of nursing is the authority for issuing a certificate. A license for an RN is a must for working in the District of Columbia and all 50 states. However, the requirements of licensing vary slightly from state to state. You must also pass a National Council License Exam for working as a registered nurse.
In order to get a license, you need to submit a background and medical check before the licensing authority. You must also submit a fingerprint card to the local department of public safety. Fees for getting a license, continuing education requirements, work requirements, etc. will also vary depending on the norms of each state.