How to Choose a Nursing Program near Hamilton Georgia
Choosing the best nursing college near Hamilton GA may feel like a challenging undertaking, especially if you aren’t sure what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you need to receive the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and evaluate the qualifications of each program you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate choice. The fact is, too many future students base their determination exclusively on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Selecting the least expensive college or the one that is nearest to your residence is undoubtedly not the most reliable way to select a nursing program. There are several important additional factors to explore before you determine where to attend classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first review what the job of a registered nurse is in our health system, along with the nursing degree choices that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, including Hamilton GA hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary job is to support doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the specific duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization along with where they work. Some of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Monitoring patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and generally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are several degree options available to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or advance to obtain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are available in the Hamilton GA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program offered by community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and later attain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more extensive training than the ADN. It is commonly a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their prior training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might wish to advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is typically a 2 year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has obtained one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Additional requirements for licensing change from state to state, so don’t forget to check with the Georgia board of nursing for any state requirements.
LPN and LVN Training
There are generally two scholastic accreditations available that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be concluded in the shortest period of time, typically about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The other alternative is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and typically require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with offering a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you seek, it needs to be Georgia approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the syllabus properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to earn a college degree. CNA education can be obtained at Hamilton GA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to receive at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum amount of instruction directed and each state has its own requirements. So it’s necessary to make certain that the program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but additionally those for Georgia or the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to check with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training is state approved. As well as the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be other prerequisites as well.
Things to Ask Nursing Schools
Once you have selected which nursing program to pursue, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus near Hamilton GA or on the web, you can use the following pointers to start narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within Georgia and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we earlier mentioned, the site of the school along with the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two factors that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to see how your selection compares to the field.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program as well as the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Aside from helping make sure that you obtain a premium education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available in Hamilton GA for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are enrolled in not only provides an exceptional education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Georgia or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Additionally, get in touch with the Georgia school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Hamilton GA healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgments are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the RN colleges you are looking at what their graduation rates are as well as how long on average it takes students to complete their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were unhappy with the program and dropped out. It’s also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a favorable reputation within the Hamilton GA medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with Hamilton GA hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Nursing Online Schools
Attending nursing programs online is emerging as a more favored way to get instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Many schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs require a certain number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more practical approach to finding the free time to attend classes for many Hamilton GA students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and household obligations have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Hamilton GA?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Hamilton Georgia area. If that is the case, then the following information may prove to be both educational and useful regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Hamilton is a city in, and the county seat of Harris County, Georgia, United States. It is part of the Columbus, Georgia-Alabama Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 1,016 at the 2010 census, up from 307 at the 2000 census. As of 2015, the population had risen to an estimated 1,158.
In January 1912, the lynching of a black woman and three black men in Hamilton attracted national attention from the press and widespread outrage. Dusky Crutchfield, Eugene Harrington, Burrell Hardaway, and Johnie Moore had been held for questioning in the death of a white landowner. They were later shown to have been utterly innocent. They had never even been arrested. A mob of white men took them outside town, hanged and shot them. While many white families tried to build walls of silence around the murders, the effects of these crimes were long-lasting. Coverage by local white newspapers at the time suggested the four were guilty. The Montgomery Advertiser did not even report their names correctly.
Hamilton is located slightly northeast of the center of Harris County at 32°45′53″N 84°52′23″W / 32.76472°N 84.87306°W / 32.76472; -84.87306 (32.764669, -84.873103).U.S. Route 27 runs through the city from north to south, leading southwest 25 miles (40 km) to Columbus and north 8 miles (13 km) to Pine Mountain. Georgia State Route 116 intersects U.S. Route 27 in the city for a very short concurrency. Atlanta is 87 miles (140 km) by road to the northeast. The city is located at the southern base of the Pine Mountain Range, the southernmost mountain range of the Appalachian Mountains.
Select the Right Nursing Degree near Hamilton GA
Selecting the right registered nursing degree program is potentially the most critical phase to beginning a new career in the health care industry. There are numerous aspects that you must take into account when selecting a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, obligations, and economic status. As we have pointed out in this article, it is important that you choose an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Hamilton GA.
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