Training to Become an RN in West Virginia
The field of nursing is projected to expand through the year 2020. The opportunities for registered nurses (RN)will increase as the senior population experiences greater longevity and requires health care for longer periods of time. Nursing is the area of healthcare expanding quickly and qualified RNs are always needed to meet the demands.
Becoming a registered nurse in West Virginia requires the candidate to complete a nursing program approved by the West Virginia Board of Nursing (WVBON). The program will include class work and clinical training and must result in a minimum of an Associate’s degree in nursing.
Once the candidate meets the educational qualifications, the next step is the licensing process. RNs are required to be licensed, according to state law, before practicing nursing on any level. The National Council for Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) is a national, standard nursing test taken by all nursing students in the United States. Candidates must pass the exam with a score of at least 75%.
Nursing graduates are required to apply to the WVBON to take the NCLEX-RN and the application includes a criminal background and fingerprint check, an affidavit from the nursing school certifying the applicant has successfully completed the nursing requirements and the degree earned. Applicants must also provide a signed affidavit from a person they have known for at least five years certifying their good moral character. At the time of application to test is submitted, the applicant must also register with Pearson VUE Testing Services, the entity that administers the exam. Separate fees are due to the WVBON and Pearson VUE.
The applicant will have the option to apply for a temporary RN license to allow the applicant to begin employment while working through the exam process. The beginning of nursing employment is defined as orientation orientation. The temporary license is valid for 90 days, or until the pass or fail results are received. If the applicant fails the exam, employment must terminate immediately.
The Board will review the application and the applicant will receive an authorization to test (ATT). With the ATT in hand the applicant has the necessary permission to contact Pearson VUE and schedule the exam. The applicant will be notified of the pass or fail results following the exam. Applicants who pass the exam will be issued an RN license and applicants who fail will receive an application to take the exam again after a 45 day waiting period.
RNs are required to renew their license every year and all RN licenses expire on 31 October. RNs must complete 30 approved contact hours of continuing education every two renewal periods, with at least three hours in drug diversion training and best practice prescription of controlled substances for the first license renewal round. Beginning with the second license renewal RNs will be required to complete one hour in drug diversion education.
The average RN salary in West Virginia is $57,500 annually. The average entry level starting salary for an RN is $38,000 annually. The average salary for RNs in a supervisory or administrative position is $93,000. Actual salaries will vary depending on the area of nursing, geographic location, type of facility where employed, years of experience and level of education achieved. In addition to salary, RNs may receive as part of a compensation package, health insurance benefits, life insurance, short and/or long term insurance, retirement contributions and tuition reimbursement consideration.
Nursing duties vary depending on type of facility, but typical duties include completing patient history, establishing care and treatment plans for patients, educating patients and family members about the patient’s condition and care plan, conduct diagnostic testing, dispense medication according to plan, perform emergency procedures, coordinate care with other healthcare specialists and supervise the nursing staff.
RNs will find employment in private duty care, especially home care, visiting nurse and hospice organizations, temporary healthcare staffing agencies, hospitals, nursing homes, assisted care centers, rehabilitative facilities, occupational healthcare centers, government and educational facilities, private and public clinics, doctors offices and seasonal recreational and vacation venues.
Schools With RN Programs in West Virginia
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- Doctor of Nursing Practice with an Emphasis in Educational Leadership
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