Training to Become an RN in Vermont
Nursing is a profession that experiences continued growth. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nursing will continue in an upward swing at the rate of 18 to 20% through the year 2020. The growth is attributed to an aging population experiencing greater longevity and medical technology advancements resulting in increased health care options. Nursing is also very demanding and requires nurses to be in good physical health in order to keep up with the rigors of the job.
The Vermont Board of Nursing (VBON) require RN candidates to complete an approved nursing program and earn a minimum of an Associate’s degree and pass the National Council for Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). An Associate’s degree takes 2 years to complete and includes class work and clinical training and prepares the student to take the NCLEX-RN. An approved nursing program will include class work and clinical training. RNs who wish to pursue advanced nursing will be required to earn a Master’s degree in nursing.
Upon completion of an approved nursing program, the graduate is required to pass the NCLEX-RN to become licensed. RNs are required to be licensed to be eligible for nursing practice. The application to test is submitted to the VBON and the applicant must also register with Pearson VUE, the exam administrator. The application to test includes a criminal background and fingerprint check, a 2”x2” passport type photo and the appropriate fee. Once the application has been reviewed and verified as complete, the applicant receives an authorization to test (ATT). The ATT is required to schedule a date to take the NCLEX. While the applicant is in the NCLEX process they may apply to the state for a 30 day temporary license. This will allow the RN candidate to begin employment, but the applicant must work under the supervision of a licensed RN. The temporary will be valid for 60 days and is not renewable. If the applicant does not pass the NCELX while working under a temporary license, the license expires immediately and employment must cease.
RNs are required to renew their license every two years on 01 April of every odd year. Licenses can be renewed online except if the license has been allowed to lapse. A license that is considered lapsed is one that was not renewed within the 30 days that followed the expiration date. Retired RNs and RNs not in the work force are still required to renew their license every two years if they wish to retain their RN status.
The average RN salary in Vermont is $63,000 annually. The average entry level RN salary is $45,000 annually and Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRN) will find the average salary is $80,000. The actual salary levels vary depending on several factors including years of experience, level of education completed and responsibility assumed. An RN in a position of responsibility may top out at a salary of about $110,000 annually. RNs can always maximize their salary by continuing their education, assuming greater responsibility and pursuing a nursing specialty. Since healthcare is a 24 hour a day business, RNs who work the night shift, typically 11:00 PM to 7:00 AM will earn a highly salary.
The duties of an RN vary with the type of nursing performed, but typical RN duties include preparing, implementing and monitoring patient care plans, performing diagnostic tests and assisting doctors with such tests, dispensing medication including injections, monitoring patient progress, assisting patients with hygiene, dressing wounds and changing dressings and preparing patients to go home or to another care facility. RNs also supervise the nursing staff, including the certified nursing assistants (CNA).
RNs find employment in a variety of areas including hospitals and nursing homes, rehabilitative facilities, occupational healthcare facilities, educational facilities, correctional facilities, the American Red Cross, hospice and visiting nurse organizations, clinics, doctors offices, call a nurse help lines and insurance companies evaluating medical claims. RNs sometimes turn to education and teach future nurses.
Schools With RN Programs in Vermont
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