Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Celebrating Nurse Week in 2017

nurses should be honored for their contributions to society
The American Nurses Association announced Nurses: “Making a Difference Every Day” as the theme for Nurses Week. Nurses Week in the U.S. is celebrated May 6 to 12. Nurses Day is May 6.
The Canadian Nurses Association decided to reprise last year's theme because of its popularity. Think you Know Nursing? Take a Closer Look will once again be the theme for Nurses Week which will be celebrated May 12-18. Nurses Day is May 12.

The International Council of Nurses has declared Delivering Quality, Serving Communities Nurses Leading Primary Health Care as the theme for International Nurses Day which is May 12 in honor of the birth date of Florence Nightingale.

Florence Nightingale is one of the most revered icons of the nursing profession. Although over the years many have challenged having Nurses Day or Nurses Week honor her stating that she does not accurately represent modern nursing, none have succeeded.

Known as the Lady with the Lamp, Florence Nightingale earned her reputation as a pioneer in nursing for her work during the Crimean War in Turkey. In 1854, she took 38 nurses with her to attend to wounded soldiers in Scutari, Turkey. She observed the unsanitary conditions and surmised that they contributed to the death rate of the soldiers, perhaps more than their injuries. Here are some contributions:,%20Inc.,-Inc./57ced86c1126f4220a8b6080/#lat=40.609253&lng=-73.956167&zoom=15

As she began to impose and implement improved sanitary conditions, the death rate declined and she collected this data. (Over six months the death rate had declined from 60%% to 2%.) With this data, she invented the PIE chart and proved to the military that the poor conditions contributed to the high death rate of the soldiers. She was then able to raise funds through the London Times to order more clothing, bedding and bandaging materials for the soldiers.

Taking on more of an administrative role, Ms. Nightingale continued to visit the wards at night. Her rule that she be the only woman on the wards at night earned her the title of the Lady with the Lamp.

The nursing profession has come a long way since then. Nurses Day and Week celebrations are designed to honor nurses for their continued efforts to promote health and wellness and role in primary health care. Nurses make a difference in someone's life everyday!

Help Honor a Nurse

The general public can help honor nurses during Nurses Week or on Nurses Day and help raise awareness of the nursing profession by:

  • writing letters to the editor of local newspapers asking everyone to do something to thank a nurse
  • encouraging local government officials to take out an ad in a local newspaper to honor nurses or to issue a Proclamation for Nurses Day or Nurses Week
  • local merchants can honor nurses by offering discounts for their goods or services for Nurses Day or during Nurses Week
  • establish a local scholarship fund for new nurses and nurses continuing their education
Honoring nurses and raising awareness of the nursing profession will help to encourage young people to explore a career in nursing. There is a tremendous shortage of nurses worldwide which is expected to reach crisis levels in the next decade as the population ages and grows.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Nursing Degrees to Meet Job Growth Demands

The advanced degree training by nurse practitioners means that graduates are prepared to take on specialized care of patients in a variety of health care settings. Careers as nurse practitioners join other popular health care careers such as physical therapy, occupational therapy and health care administration.

According to the Canadian Nurses Association, this is an excellent time to enter nursing in order to meet a shortage. The aging population, dwindling number of physicians and increasing variety of nursing settings means that nurse practitioners will be in demand for years to come.

How Does a Nurse Practitioner Differ From Other Trained Nurses?

In most Canadian provinces, nurse practitioners, sometimes called NP, have a broad scope of practice. Nurse practitioners diagnose and manage disorders and chronic diseases, refer people to specialists, prescribe medications and order diagnostic tests such as x-rays and ultrasounds.

Nurse practitioners can perform physical examinations, provide care during pregnancy and after the baby is born, for both mother and child.

Nurse practitioner careers are a good choice for people who enjoy more rigor in the nursing practice and want to deepen understanding about certain types of nursing care. Here are some samples:,-Inc./#lat=40.609904&lng=-73.956231&zoom=17,_Inc.

Nurse Practitioners Use Specialized Nursing Education

For example, nurse practitioners are found applying specialized nursing skills in acute care settings, such as emergency wards or intensive care units. Others work in family practice, diagnosing primary care concerns such as throat and ear infections.

Other nurse practitioners can perform minor surgeries, often in a family practice or ambulatory clinic, while still others work to provide health promotion and prevention services.

In Canada, the completion of a nursing degree is the entry towards becoming a nurse practitioner. Graduates can then work towards becoming a nurse practitioner by taking additional classes and passing the official nursing practitioner examination.

The Canadian Nurse Practitioner Examination ensures that registered nurses who apply for registration as nurse practitioners within their jurisdiction meet an acceptable level of competence before they begin to practice.

Nursing Degree Programs First Step in Specialized Nursing Career

In addition, the Ontario Healthcare Primary Nurse Practitioner Program offers a certificate, continuing education and courses. The program is a consortium of nine Ontario universities that offer nursing degree programs.

Through this program, students take courses over one year to learn advanced skills in these areas:

  • Pathophysiology for Nurse Practitioners
  • Advanced Health Assessment and Diagnosis
  • Therapeutics in Primary Health Care

An Integrative Practicum

Nurse practitioner programs continue growing across Canada as the demand for graduates with these advanced nursing skills increases. Students interested in the field of nursing would be well-served to consider pursuing this specialized nursing training in addition to obtaining a nursing degree.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Alaska RN Schools & License Guidelines

Individuals without an official nursing background who are interested in becoming an Alaska Registered Nurse must first graduate from a state-approved RN Alaska program.

All states in the U.S. approve and regulate their own registered nurse (RN) prelicensure academic training programs, the majority of which are either associate-level or bachelor's programs in nursing.

The Alaska Board of Nursing is the organization responsible for approving those AK RN schools found across the state.

This article shows interested nursing students where they can find state-approved Alaska RN programs, and also explains the state's licensing requirements.

RN Alaska License Guidelines

The following requirements must be fulfilled for individuals who have never earned an approved nursing degree before being allowed to work as an Alaska Registered Nurse:

  • Finish an AK RN program that has been state-approved
  • Pass the national licensing examination (called the NCLEX-RN)
  • Complete a criminal history review

Registered nurses in other states who hold a valid license, and who have not been charged with any ethical infractions, can apply to have their license transferred to Alaska. For information on how to obtain an application, contact the board at 907-269-8438.

Alaska Registered Nurse School Curricula

Alaska schools that house nursing programs are able to build their own unique nursing curricula. However, in order to be state-approved, RN Alaska programs must minimally offer the following:

  • Two years of full-time learning
  • A theoretical, academic learning component
  • A clinical training component

In the academic portion of nursing programs, students learn numerous important areas of study in the classroom, including:

  • Psychology
  • Microbiology
  • Medical ethics
  • Pharmacology
  • Social sciences
  • General nursing practice
  • Medical and surgical nursing
  • Mental health issues

In the clinical, hands-on training portion of AK RN programs, students are supervised as they work with patients of all ages. This work, which is often performed in local hospitals, gives students the opportunity to practice those nursing skills acquired in the classroom.

Finding AK RN Schools

The Board of Nursing approves a handful of programs across the state, including an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) program and Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program available from the University of Alaska in Anchorage.

For a complete list of approved nursing schools in the state, contact the board at 907-269-8438.

Benefits of RN Alaska Training

Those who are able to both graduate from an approved nursing program and pass the national licensing exam are able to seek work as an Alaska Registered Nurse.

According to statistics from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, RN jobs are expected to rise in demand over the next ten years as the nation's population ages, making an investment in nurse training a wise move.