How to Become a Registered Nurse in Kansas
The field of nursing remains a strong career path in terms of opportunities and employment. Nursing is predicted to continue to grow by 20% through the year 2020. The growth is due to the many advances in healthcare that leads to an increase in healthcare options. Coupled with an aging population that requires more healthcare for longer periods of time translates to more nursing opportunities.
To become a registered nurse in Kansas requires candidates to complete a nursing program that results in at least an Associate’s degree at a college or university and approved by the Kansas Board of Nursing (KBON). Most Associate degree programs take two years to complete. Completing an Associate’s degree program can be a stepping stone to a higher nursing degree. The approved program will include class work and clinical training. The clinical training will be completed at a healthcare facility and under the direction of a registered nursing instructor.
Once the educational requirements have been met, the graduate is required to pass the National Council for License Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). After graduation, the graduate will submit an application, complete with fingerprint card, criminal background check and transcript from the nursing program, to take the NCLEX-RN to the KBON and register with Pearson VUE, the test administrator. Once the KBON approves the application, Pearson VUE will be notified of the applicant’s ability to test. The student will receive an authorization to test (ATT) and contact Pearson VUE to make an appointment to take the exam. Students have up to years from the date of graduation to take the NCLEX-RN exam. When the applicant passes the exam, the KBON will issue an RN license to the applicant. If the graduate does not pass the exam, they will receive an application to take the test again.
All RN licenses expire on the last day of the birth month of licensee in the odd or even year based on the year born. Licenses expire every two years and are subject to renewal. The KBON no longer issues paper licenses. All licenses are subject to check and verification through the KBON website. RNs are required to complete 30 continuing education hours each renewal period. The hours must be approved by any state board of nursing or nationally recognized nursing organization. The hours must be completed before renewing a license.
Nursing is a very challenging career and RNs will find a great deal of challenge with the variety of tasks an RN undertakes. The tasks will vary depending on employment, but typical RN tasks include dispensing medication, monitoring patients progress, developing and implementing patient care plans, performing diagnostic testing and assisting doctors with the diagnostic testing, dressing wounds, changing bandages and performing emergency services.
The average RN salary in Kansas is $60,000 annually and an entry level nurse can expect an average salary of $44,000. Actual salary will vary depending on geographic location, education and years of experience. RNs working in metropolitan areas will sometimes find the average salary slightly higher than elsewhere in the state.
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