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Nursing: Continuing Education for the Professional


Technology changes the world around us at an astonishing rate. If there is one profession that is dependent on technology, it is nursing. Continuing education courses in the field of nursing is a must, not only to keep up with the constantly changing technology that rapidly improves this field, but to also guarantee licensure in order to practice.

While a number of courses are offered by employers, from time to time, those who look to enhance their skills and uphold excellence in their chosen profession seek out the availability of accredited nursing continuing education programs online. A majority of these programs provide state mandated courses while also offering courses for the various branches of nursing, such as physical/occupational therapy, geriatric nutrition, critical care and much, much more. Different aspects between branches and the states they are practiced in also means credit hours and courses will also vary. Online courses are flexible and fit in well with the schedules of dedicated nurses who are perhaps balancing their career with family and a home life.

The credits in nursing continuing education programs are measured in contact hours. For example, when a course in advanced wound care offers 5 contact hours, the figure represents the hours per week one can expect to spend in that course. The course and hours will then be entered into a ‘continuing education tracking database’ under the license holder’s number. This allows state boards to track the number of required hours for licensees and ensures that those practicing are within the lines of the law to do so. In some instances, an employer will pay for these hours or offer tuition reimbursement for courses taken.

Some courses available in a nursing continuation program are not necessarily required but can be taken merely to enhance the skills of the nurse. These are often classes that help to provide perspectives in patient care, nuances of insurance laws and regulations, developing team attitudes and many other issues that may arise from time to time but are not taught in the general context of the field. Not surprisingly, these types of courses are important to those in the nursing field who are quite aware that their occupation requires them to be alert and vigilant in all areas when it comes to patient care. The field of nursing is well known for attracting kind and caring individuals who have a need to help people and often go above and beyond the call of duty when it comes to the genuine concern for others.

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