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How long does it take to become an registered nurse?

I really want to be a nurse. I honestly just want to be in the medical field.

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Marie’s Answer

The time required to get a nursing degree varies depending on path taken. With the increase in the number of online programs, you can increase education without attending classes.
The LVN/LPN programs take one year and then you sit for national test ,and get your license . Hospitals have phased out the use of LPNs. Most LPNs work home health and long-term care facilities. Although there is an increase in hospitals hiring LPNs again. When I worked with LPNs, there knowledge base was better then some RNs.
An RN entry level can take two paths. Both paths end with taking NCLEX test and an RN license. The ADN program takes two years once prerequisites are met. The BSN path takes four years to complete.
Since I became a nurse in 1990 they have been saying they were getting rid of ADN programs. As you can tell this has not happened .IOM: 80% of registered nurses to have BSN degree by 2020. The number of BSN nurses has increased but not to the 80% goal .
In my experience with orienteering new staff, ADN nurses come into the unit better able to function with task, planing care and critical thinking skills. BSN nurses do have more management and business education, this has to take the place of other learning needs. Both degrees serve a purpose in the demand for nurses at this time. Both can produce great nurses
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Laura’s Answer

2-4 years depending on Nursing Program. I also recommend getting a Bachelors in Nursing as many RN jobs want that now
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Michaela’s Answer

Hi, Cahyriah!

Most programs take 4 years to complete for a BSN. There are also accelerated programs that take 2-3 years to complete. You could look into getting your LPN license in 1-2 years and then taking an online program to get your BSN. That way, you would be able to work as an LPN and gain experience while working towards a BSN. I hope this helps!
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Jessica’s Answer

Hi Cahyriah,
RN programs can take 2-4+ depending on if you need to meet pre-requisite classes and/or you start with an associate's or bachelor's degree. Ultimately/eventually, the professional will require a bachelor's degree.
As a side note: there's lots of options to be part of the medical field. One thing you could do is to apply to be a Patient Care Tech at your local hospital or see if your school offers CNA training so you can work in a clinical setting to gain real world experience.
I hope this helps!
Jessica
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Mary Beth’s Answer

Well, if your goal is to just be in the medical field then you first need to find out exactly what that means to you. Nursing is far different from medicine, radiology, podiatry, occupational or physical therapies, pharmacology, etc.
There are also different educational needs to different entry levels in nursing. So, you can do a 2 year associate nursing degree, but you don’t learn anything, or very little, about leadership or the business of healthcare. Your focus is more on the technical skills needed to perform whatever the MD orders, medication, wound care, some nutrition, etc. A 4 year RN bachelors degree is the entry level most healthcare organization demand in order to provide the best care and leadership potential. Another option is the LPN (practical nurse) also gives you most of the technical skills needed, but not much in the way of overall holistic assessments, and must be overseen by an RN.

The other medical fields take 4-8 years of education…but also have lower education for the ‘assistants’ in those fields, needing 2-4 years of advanced education. A PA(physicians assistant) takes 4 years. An PT assistant 1-2 years, and so on. An OR tech is generally 1-2 years to work in operating rooms under an RN supervision.

So, as I sad, first you need to know what kind of healthcare you want to be involved in. Some are very patient centered and hands on. Others more of behind the scenes deal with limited patient contact. There are so many avenues to explore. Think about some short term unpaid internships to get a better idea of what each one entails.

Best of luck…it is a crazy world in healthcare these days.
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