How to become a Registered Nurse
Do you work well under pressure and enjoy being part of a busy team? Are you interested in healthcare and wellbeing? If so, learning how to become a Registered Nurse could be the start of a rewarding career.
What is a Registered Nurse?
Registered nurses look after patients by identifying their care requirements and making modifications to their treatment plans according to the patient’s condition and responses. Among other things, these healthcare professionals administer medications whilst monitoring any side effects, record vital signs and operate medical equipment used to monitor various health conditions.
The healthcare field has many strict hygiene and infection control procedures as well as medical standards and regulations. As a registered nurse, you would need to be meticulous and thorough in adhering to these guidelines. Aside from technical duties, you would be expected to be your patient’s advocate and therefore coordinate with other healthcare professionals to assess, plan, implement and evaluate their health care needs.
The nursing profession requires precision especially when it comes to following instructions, good problem-solving and decision-making skills, multitasking capabilities and the ability to deal with emergency situations in a calm and reassuring way. As a nurse you would also need to have excellent interpersonal skills so you can communicate with people from different backgrounds, ages and cultures as well as provide emotional support to patients and their family members.
Being a nurse is physically and psychologically demanding so you will need to have the endurance, patience and tact to cope with the duties of the role.
Hours & Conditions:
Registered nurses are employed in different work environments including hospitals, medical centers, home health care services, aged care facilities, correctional facilities, educational institutions and the armed forces. You would be required to work shifts that include night shifts, weekends and public holidays. Nurses may work on a full-time, part-time or contractual basis.
How to become a Registered Nurse: Qualifications
To become a registered nurse you would have to study nursing at university. Nursing courses usually require a secondary school certificate or equivalent. English, mathematics, biology, physics and chemistry are appropriate subjects to take before entering university.
Nursing students must obtain a National Police Certificate, provide a First Aid Certificate and get the necessary immunisations prior to undertaking their clinical placements. They are also legally required to register with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia www.nursingmidwiferyboard.gov.au before they practice as a registered nurse in any state or territory of Australia.
Many registered nurses also study additional courses and nursing specialties like paediatric, emergency, critical care, mental health, palliative care, occupational health and community nursing.
To look at courses that will help you find a role as a nurse, check out
The demand for healthcare services is steadily increasing due to a number of factors including growing affluence, the large population of aging baby boomers and increased emphasis on preventive care. Because of these factors, there is an expected increase in job opportunities for nurses across different specialties. In fact, the growth rate for the employment of registered nurses is projected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations.
If learning how to become a Registered Nurse has sparked an interested in learning about other Healthcare jobs, perhaps check out this useful summary: 5 Popular Healthcare Roles.