If you are one of those looking to join the healthcare industry, then you will be glad to know that nursing schools in Kentucky can improve your chances with the various programs that they provide. There are currently about 40 educational institutions in the State of Kentucky that provide training programs of varying levels to candidates who want to make a substantial career in the healthcare industry. Some of the programs can lead to graduate degrees and even more advanced studies for those seeking specialization.
There is no question that nurses are currently in high demand in the State of Kentucky, which translates to excellent job opportunities in some of the best hospitals and healthcare facilities that incidentally are in huge abundance in the State. According to the figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics under the U.S. Department of Labor, the hourly wage for nurses in the State is a bit lower compared to the national median average, but the huge opportunities for career growth more than make up for the difference. Some of the training programs in nursing schools in Kentucky include:
Licensed Practical Nurse / Licensed Vocational Nurse (LPN/LVN)
There are many options open to candidates who want to take advantage of LPN/LVN programs in the State. Some of the nursing programs are designed to satisfy the requirements of the first year of two-year Associate Degree in Nursing courses. This means that after the first year of the LPN/LVN program, candidates have a number of options to consider on which path to follow for their career growth.
This program can be a potential leap to a Registered Nurse (RN) licensing program should candidates choose to take advantage of it. The State Board of Nursing is the best source of information for licensing requirements and other options in the field of nursing. There is no question that an RN will bring in more money as well as open up more employment opportunities. This is of course at the expense of having to invest in more time and money to train. Those who want to begin their career immediately; an LPN/LVN program is adequate.
Associate Degree in Nursing / Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ADN/BSN)
For the 45,000 Registered Nurses practicing in the State of Kentucky, the average salary that they receive is relatively lower than what the national average dictates. However, they do benefit from lower cost of living and more employment opportunities that can result in career advancements that may not be open in other States. Moreover, the State of Kentucky is one of the 24 Nurse Licensure Compact States, which means that Registered Nurses and Licensed Practical Nurses can practice their profession interstate without having to secure additional licensing.
Those who are seriously looking for a career in the nursing field can appreciate this built-in advantage from nursing schools in Kentucky. Admission to the ADN/BSN program will be based on individual requirements of the educational institutions after the completion of general education courses pre-requisites. This program is actually a combination of general education, clinical instruction, and nursing courses.
Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing
Considering that the State of Kentucky has a relatively lower nursing shortage compared to other States, the number of Registered Nurses is almost twice that of those holding Bachelor of Science in Nursing degrees. This is perhaps because there are many counties that present enormous employment opportunities like Fayette and Jefferson for example. It is important for candidates to be aware that every RN in the State is required to undergo complete background check as well as continuing education training for their licensure.
There are numerous educational institutions where candidates can take advantage of these types of programs. However, some of the more prominent nursing schools in Kentucky that make it to the top of the list are:
• Kentucky State University – normally has a one year RN to BSN program based on pre-requisites that must be satisfied by all candidates.
• University of Kentucky – has one of the best in-classroom and online RN to BSN programs around the country. It allows candidates to go to class once every month while completing their homework and online assignments on their off days.
• Frankfort Regional Medical Center (FRMC) – recipient of the Gold Seal of Approval from The Joint Commission among other honors, it is considered as one of the best places to train and work in the State according to the Kentucky Chamber of Congress.
• University of Louisville Hospital – boasts of a specialized nursing care, it provides ample training for stroke and adult burn care.
• Morehead State University – this is a public university that has an exclusive online RN to BSN program. Candidates have the choice between a full-time or part-time program from one of the 25 universities in the south. A full-time program can be completed in about three semesters, while the part-time program will normally take six semesters.
Masters in Nursing (RN to MSN)
Since 2011, the State of Kentucky Board of Nursing began officially using the term Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRN) as the descriptive title for candidates of the Masters in Nursing program. Before this time, the title was Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner (ARNP) to describe the kind of specialized experience and education that candidates go through. The Board of Nursing adopted the changes to be able to have a more accurate reflection of the reality that nurse practitioners are not the only Advanced Nurses practicing in the State of Kentucky.
The APRN covers Nurse Practitioners (NP), Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNA), Certified Nurse Midwives (CNM), and Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNS). Consistent with what is being experienced in many States, there is also a shortage of physicians in the State of Kentucky. Because of this shortage, the Master’s-prepared nurse practitioners are tasked with the responsibility of delivering direct patient care where the shortage has not been addressed.
The approximately 3,000 NP currently in active practice deliver the necessary primary care in many rural as well as medically underserved areas of the State. The number of CRNA is the State of Kentucky is about 1,000. They are primarily responsible for the delivery of anesthesia in many small and rural areas. An APRN who has taken advanced training course in pharmacology in nursing schools in Kentucky becomes eligible to issue medical prescriptions in the State of Kentucky.
These training programs provided by nursing schools in Kentucky allow candidates to maximize the benefits of joining the medical industry.