Preparing for the Future: 4 Educational Paths for Nursing Professionals

Preparing for the Future: 4 Educational Paths for Nursing Professionals

Preparing for the Future: 4 Educational Paths for Nursing Professionals

The educational paths for nursing have improved over the years. Pursuing a nursing education can lead you to a lucrative and rewarding career. According to the BLS, there are about 194,500 job openings for registered nurses every year.

That number is expected to increase by 9% between 2020 and 2030, making it easy for aspiring nurses to find work. The median salary for registered nurses is $77,600, higher than the national average.

To prepare for a career in nursing, there are many educational paths to choose from. Most nurses start out with a bachelor’s degree, but those that seek higher positions can pursue a master’s or doctoral degree. Below, we’ve outlined four educational paths nursing professionals can pursue.

Associate Degree In Nursing

The fastest way to open doors to nursing roles is to take an associate degree in nursing (ADN). ADNs are undergraduate degree programs that focus on the technical and practical, teaching core nursing knowledge and clinical nursing skills.

Shorter ADN programs take 18 months to complete, but the average ADN program will run for 2 years. ADN graduates can pursue a number of basic nursing roles, such as personal care nursing, care facility nursing, rehabilitation nursing, and public health nursing. The average ADN graduate earns $70,000 annually.

Bachelor Of Science In Nursing

Aspiring nurses that want to pursue more in-depth educational programs can take a bachelor’s degree in nursing. Whereas ADNs last two years, BSNs last four. BSNs go beyond the technical to teach the theoretical.

On top of honing clinical skills, the most comprehensive BSN programs provide training in administrative roles, leadership roles, and management roles. Naturally, BSN graduates have more career options than ADN graduates to become nurse practitioners. The average annual salary of a BSN graduate is $84,000.

Master Of Science In Nursing

After completing your BSN, you can pursue a Master of Science In Nursing (MSN). Applicants of MSN programs are required to first earn a bachelor’s degree, though that degree does not have to be related to nursing. The main difference between a BSN and an MSN is specialization.

BSN programs cover broader nursing topics, while MSN programs require each student to select a specific nurse practitioner concentration. MSN graduates typically go on to become nurse practitioners, nurse anesthetists, or clinical nurse specialists. Experienced MSN graduates can make up to $110,000.

Doctor Of Nursing Practice

The highest level of education a nurse can attain is a doctor of nursing practice (DNP). To qualify for a DNP, applicants must first complete an MSN or a master’s degree in a health-related field. DNP programs typically take two to three years to complete.

The goal of a DNP program is to train students for high-level healthcare positions by teaching them advanced theory and healthcare procedures. DNP graduates can take roles in research, academia, policy management, and healthcare management. The average yearly income of a DNP graduate is $126,000.

Furthermore, nurses have a wide range of choices when it comes to concentrations. Some of the most in-demand nurses today include nurse advocates, nurse educators, nurse researchers, and travel nurses.

Nurses have a lot of flexibility when it comes to the kind of work they can do, and how they can attain the education they need to qualify for their target roles. That level of flexibility is one of the many things that make nursing such an attractive career.

Post solely for the use of cupofnurses.com By Roxanne Brent

 

 

Preparing for the NCLEX Exams: 6 Proven Tips for Passing

Preparing for the NCLEX Exams: 6 Proven Tips for Passing

Preparing for the NCLEX Exams: 6 Proven Tips for Passing 

Preparing for the NCLEX exams is one of the most important things that any nursing student should prepare for. But the question in many nursing students’ minds is, how do you prepare for the NCLEX? If you are asking the same question, let these tips help you prepare for this upcoming exam. 

Passing the NCLEX exams is like hitting gold. It is your ticket to a better and brighter future. Before you take the exam, here are some excellent tips that you can apply to your study plan.

1. Understand the NCLEX Format.

When you understand how the NCLEX format works, the easier it will be to pass it. NCLEX uses the CAT format or computerized adaptive testing format. It means that not a single exam is identical. The algorithm produces a new set of questions based on your performance on the previous test questions. Keep in mind that the test bank is comprehensive and contains all kinds of question styles and topics of content. 

The exams will produce around 60 questions minimum plus 15 pre-questions with 145 maximum questions. The candidate can pass the test when the tester has answered enough questions with correct answers at about the 95% confidence interval. The candidate will fail if they cannot maintain or rise above the 95% confidence. 

It means, that to pass the NCLEX, you must get above the passing line that shows competency with marginal doubt. When the computer has determined your performance, the test can end at any point. You are given a maximum time allowance of 6 hours to do this. So, all you have to do is pass the 60-145 questions. 

2. Avoid self-criticism.

The questions tend to get harder as you move forward. Don’t get frustrated when you get a few wrongs in a row and don’t automatically assume you’ve failed. The best thing you can do is to stay focused on the questions you have. Remember, the NCLEX exam determines your knowledge and tests your endurance. It is best to keep answering instead of talking yourself down each time you get a wrong answer. 

3. Manage your stress.

It is expected to get worked up before the examination, but it is recommended that you find a way to manage your stress. Some test-takers get anxious before taking the NCLEX, and if you are one of them, don’t worry there are plenty of ways to deal with test stress. 

One of the first things you should do is take as much time as you can to prepare for the NCLEX but don’t make studying your entire life. There is always time for everything and balancing your studies with hobbies is a must. 

Be sure to include time for exercising, eating well, and going out. Keeping a balanced life during studying and doing the things you love helps ease your mind from any anxiety that you might feel before the exam. Some nurses say there is a rule to not study the day before the exam, only a quick skim through some notes

On the day of the exam, do not study. Do not attempt to take a glance at your notes or review anything. It will only make you more anxious. Instead, you need to relax, do a short meditation, and eat your breakfast before going to the exam center. In short, do something that will keep you grounded and calm. 

The best thing you can do is to study appropriately beforehand. When you know that you have covered everything during your study days and are confident that you will pass, taking the NCLEX exam isn’t that scary. 

4. Make a study plan.

Making a study plan means you need to create time for studying. Create a schedule for the week and set aside the hours you need for studying. Be sure to include a goal each time you are studying too. It could be as simple as answering 4 25 question practice exams or reading a few chapters on the topic you are tackling at the moment. 

Keep in mind that when you do not have any goals when studying, you are wasting time. The NCLEX is not about how long you have studied or how many hours you have put in. It is about how much you understand the context of each nursing topic. Make use of your time wisely. 

A. Not all past clinical experiences can help. 

I have bad news for those who worked as a nurse aid, tech, or even nursing students who volunteered. Your clinical experience cannot help you when you take the NCLEX exams. Why do you ask? 

The NCLEX exam is based on tested, researched, and evidence-based practices that you may have not learned in your clinical experience. Facilities will have different guidelines and protocols that are just as safe or just as effective BUT never assume that they are the same when it comes to the NCLEX. 

It is best if you answered the exam questions as if you did not have any real-life experience as a nurse. 

B. Practice your test-taking skills. 

Make use of test-taking strategies so you can eliminate the wrong answers. It will also help you with solutions like ALL THAT APPLY or NONE APPLY. Always remember to put patient safety first before considering other options. With continuous practice, you will see that there are themes in the answers. For example:

  • Be sure to assess the patient first; calling a doctor is not always the best answer. 
  • Remember your ABCs – Airway, Breathing, Circulation. 
  • Deductive reasoning can also help you even if you have no idea about the topic. 
  • If you have no exact answer, follow your gut. A nurse’s intuition can help you out. 

As you practice your test-taking skills, you will realize that there will always be “select all that apply” questions. But if you use a systematic approach and tackle the wrong answers first, you have a higher chance to answer each question correctly. 

5. Do more than just answer the practice tests.

Completing practice exams is good, but you can also go beyond that. After answering the practice questions, you can read about the answers and why they were right or wrong. Write down the concept you would like to tackle on your next study time so you are always prepared for the next day.  Take as much time as you think you need devoted to a variety of study methods, they each have their benefit and will pay off in the long run.

6. Prepare for the NCLEX Exam day. 

The night before you take the exams, go to bed early, or better yet, make sure that you have enough sleep throughout the week before the NCLEX. Hide your notes and try not to study. Be sure to put gas in your car, set your alarm for the next day, take a nice shower, and arrive early at the testing center. 

Bring snacks for your breaks during the test, and make sure to stay hydrated. If you get cold fast, bring an extra layer of clothing or a hoodie if you are allowed. In short, be as prepared as you can be. Not only will it show that you are serious about your exams, but it also shows your character as a person and perhaps as a future nurse. 

Believing in Yourself is the Key

Preparing for the NCLEX exams is not that hard. All you have to do is stay focused. You are already on your way to becoming one of the best nurses. You had proven this when you passed the nursing school. So believe that you can pass the NCLEX and you will! NCLEX is the last step towards your career as a professional nurse. Hopefully, you find these tips helpful as you are preparing for the exams, best of luck!

EP. 168 Empowering Nurses with Alice Benjamin

EP. 168 Empowering Nurses with Alice Benjamin

Empowering Nurses with Alice Benjamin

Nurses are the backbone of healthcare, and we take pride in that. However, there are times when nurses don’t feel like they are as important in our community. A bad work environment can also add up to the stress that many nurses feel. In some cases, many nurses do not feel like their efforts are given enough recognition, so they don’t perform well, or worse, they don’t provide quality patient care any longer. 

While many nurses take their profession seriously, some are not sure anymore. What can we do to help our fellow nurses? Is there a way to inspire and encourage them to do better? What needs to improve in a nurse’s work environment to help them feel empowered?

In this episode, we would like to introduce you to Alice Benjamin, better known as Nurse Alice, America’s favorite nurse. She is a cardiac clinical nurse specialist and family nurse practitioner with over 23 years of healthcare experience. Alice is Nurse.org’s Chief Nursing Officer and Correspondent and hosts the popular ‘Ask Nurse Alice’ podcast. 

QUESTIONS FOR GUESTS:

The questions below are some we’d like to tackle. We go off-topic all the time so we don’t expect to hit them all. If you have any ideas please let us know. Looking forward to our conversation!

  • Being in over 20 years in healthcare, what are some changes you would like to see in healthcare? 
  • How do you think the pandemic has affected nurses? 
  • How should new nurses empower themselves going into this profession in 2022? 
  • What do you think about the RaDonda Vaught case?
  • She was sentenced on Friday to three years of probation in a Nashville criminal court. After the probationary period, she could ultimately have her conviction dismissed.
  • Found guilty in March of two charges, criminally negligent homicide and abuse of an impaired adult, after a medication error contributed to the death of 75-year-old Charlene Murphey in December 2017.
  • What are some of the biggest challenges you have taken on recently? 
  • What is something nursing has thought you that you can apply in life? 

ENDING QUESTIONS

Before we end the show we have one last question we like to ask all our guests. If you had the opportunity to have a Cup of coffee with anybody one last time, who would it be & why? 

Socials:

Learn how to become an empowered nurse by watching our full episode. Click here for more 👇

TIME STAMPS:

00:00 Intro
01:35 About Alice
02:30 What are some changes you would like to see in healthcare?
06:26 How can we improve the healthcare system?
09:46 Reasons for some patients’ noncompliance
15:24 One-size-fits-all patient treatment does not always work.
17:57 How should new nurses empower themselves?
20:26 How to be a better nurse
24:13 What are the challenges of being a nurse
29:52 Thoughts about the RaDonda Vaught case?
43:31 The last one cup of coffee with?

EP 167: Should You Start in a CVICU as a New Grad?

EP 167: Should You Start in a CVICU as a New Grad?

Should You Start in a CVICU as a New Grad?

Start in a CVICU as a new grad? Why not! One of the exciting areas to start working as a nurse is in the Cardiac ICU. The cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit or CVICU is a hospital ward that caters to and cares for patients with ischemic heart disease and other severe heart conditions. 

Patients who suffered a heart attack and need close monitoring are also placed in this unit. The same goes for patients recovering from heart surgery and with other severe conditions like cardiomyopathy, arrhythmia, heart infection, or unstable angina. 

Most patients in the CVICU often have various complications such as respiratory failure and renal failure. Therefore, medical staff who work at CVICU are required to have the ability to practice systemic intensive care.

In this episode, we introduce you to one of our followers, James Hatano. James is a New grad nurse in the Cardiac ICU at a Trauma 1 hospital in Cleveland, Ohio. He is also a certified CrossFit coach and a baseball coach. Today we will talk about his new grad experience as a Cardiac ICU nurse. So if you are interested to start in a CVICU as a new grad, this episode is for you. 

QUESTIONS FOR GUESTS:

The questions below are some we’d like to tackle. We go off-topic all the time so we don’t expect to hit them all. If you have any ideas please let us know. Looking forward to our conversation!

  1. Your BSN is your second degree, you also have a degree in exercise physiology. What made you decide on exercise physiology and then what made you transition into nursing?
    1. Are there some aspects of exercise physiology that have helped you in nursing school, being a nurse, and/or with life in general? 
    2. How did you survive nursing school? What do you think was the key? Time management, good schedule, etc…?
  2. Was the Cardiac ICU something you wanted to get into right off the bat? 
    1. Why did you choose the Cardiac ICU? Do you fit the typical cardiac ICU stereotype? (craziest lives but neatest lines, control, OCD)
  3. Biggest difference between nursing school and the ICU?
    1. What’s something you wished you knew going into school?
    2. What did you struggle with most in school? What do you struggle with most now?
    3. Tips for nurses trying to join the ICU.
  4. Nursing is stressful, we can agree that it is never going to change. No matter if there are appropriate ratios and great morale, working with patients that are very sick you’re always going to have that stress on your shoulders.
    1. What do you do to help balance that stress, do you have any issue with not leaving it at work and bringing it home with you?
  5. You’re big into fitness you’re even one of the top 50 fittest nurses in the world, how has that helped you through life?
    1. How has fitness played a role in your life and how has it helped you with nursing?
    2. How has your exercise changed over time?
  6. The drive podcast by Peter Attia, what got you into it and why do you enjoy it, what do they talk about?
  7. Chop wood, carry water book, would you recommend that book, why and/or to whom?

ENDING QUESTIONS:

Before we end the show we have one last question we like to ask all our guests. If you had the opportunity to have a Cup of coffee with anybody one last time, who would it be & why? 

You can find James on Instagram @jameshatano to know more about CVICU nursing.

You can also watch the full episode here 👇

TIME STAMPS:

00:00 Intro
00:45 Episode Introduction
01:33 About the guest
03:29 James Hatano and nursing
06:46 How does nursing school impact life
09:57 Transitioning out of nursing school
12:17 Life lessons you learned from being a CVICU nurse
13:51 Struggles as a new grad
20:03 Balancing Work and Life
22:15 Managing time
25:03 Managing relationship
30:32 How is it working with a female dominant profession
33:44 What would you like to improve in the healthcare system
37:00 A thing that you always have
39:47 The person outside nursing
43:52 Personal interests
46:34 Who would you want to have the one last cup of coffee?

Are you Eating Cancer-Causing Glyphosate in Your Diet?

Are you Eating Cancer-Causing Glyphosate in Your Diet?

Are you Eating Cancer-Causing Glyphosate in Your Diet?

There is cancer-causing glyphosate in your diet. You might not know how harmful it is until it is too late. What is it anyway? And how can it affect our body? Read on for more.

What is Glyphosate?

A Swiss chemist working for a pharmaceutical company, Dr. Henri Martin, discovered glyphosate in 1950. Since no pharmaceutical applications were identified the molecule was sold to a series of other companies. and samples were tested for several possible ends uses.
Glyphosate is an herbicide. It is applied to the leaves of plants to kill both broadleaf plants and grasses. The sodium salt form of glyphosate regulates plant growth and ripens specific crops.
This chemical became registered for use in the U.S. in 1974. It is now one of the most used herbicides in the United States. People apply it in agriculture and forestry, lawns and gardens, and weeds in industrial areas.

How does glyphosate work? 

Cancer-causing Glyphosate is a non-selective herbicide, meaning it will kill most plants. It works by inhibiting the action of a plant enzyme. The shikimic acid pathway plays a role in synthesizing three amino acids. These are phenylalanine, tyrosine, and tryptophan.

Glyphosate lawsuits 

“Glyphosate has a 40-year history of safe and effective use. The overwhelming conclusion of experts worldwide … is that glyphosate is safe to use,” Monsanto said. He was ignorant of evidence building against the chemical.
 
the roundup-related lawsuits have dogged Bayer since it acquired the top-selling brand. It is as part of its $63 billion sales of agricultural seeds and pesticides maker Monsanto in 2018.
 
The company has spent billions of dollars to settle around 96,000 Roundup cases of about 125,000[1].

What do regulatory agencies in the USA say?

In 2015, a committee of scientists working for the International Agency for Research on Cancer of the WHO evaluated studies and reported that glyphosate is probably carcinogenic.
 
The latest from the Environmental Working Group (EWG), Food Democracy Now. The Detox Project tested various products for glyphosate. They found dangerous levels of glyphosate in everyday American foods.

Glyphosate Products to Avoid

  • Granola by Quaker, KIND, Back to Nature, Nature Valley
  • Instant oats by Giant, Quaker, Umpqua, Market Pantry
  • Whole oats by Quaker, Bob’s Red Mill, Nature’s Path, Whole Foods
  • Cereal by Kashi, Kellogg’s, including Lucky Charms and Cheerios
  • Snack bars by Quaker, KIND, Nature Valley, Kellogg’s
  • Orange juice by Tropicana, Minute Maid, Signature Farms, Kirkland
  • Crackers, including Cheez-Its, Ritz, Triscuits, Goldfish
  • Cookies by Annie’s, Kashi, and Nabisco (Oreos)
  • Chips by Stacy’s, Lay’s, Doritos, Fritos

An alarming study looked into Pesticides in Mississippi compared to air and rain between 1995 and 2007. Glyphosate and its degradation product, aminomethyl-phosphonic acid (AMPA), were detected in ≥75% of air and rain samples in 2007 [2].

How do you avoid glyphosate exposure?

The best way to avoid eating cancer-causing glyphosate is to grow your own plants, vegetables, and fruits.  If you don’t have time, source local produce from a farmer’s market you trust.
 
The Detox Project uses an FDA-registered food testing lab to test for toxic chemicals. Thye recently launched a “Glyphosate Residue Free” label. This way companies can apply to certify their products. Until it rolls out more, you are more likely (but not guaranteed) to avoid exposure by opting for foods labeled “Certified Organic.”

Products that are verified glyphosate free by the Detox project: https://detoxproject.org/certification/glyphosate-residue-free/certified-products/

The extent of food industry involvement in peer-reviewed research articles from 10 leading nutrition-related journals in 2018

We all know that evidence supports the food industry’s involvement in nutrition research or agendas. However, food industry involvement in nutrition research has not been systematically explored. 

This study, published on December 16th, 2020, aimed to identify the extent of food industry involvement in peer-reviewed articles. It includes leading nutrition-related journals that are examined thoroughly. The goal is to find food industries that support the industry’s interests. 

No study has comprehensively examined the extent and nature of food industry involvement in peer-reviewed research.

The study reviewed the top 10 most cited nutrition and dietetics-related journals. The evaluation of food industry involvement was evaluated based on author affiliations, funding sources, declarations of interest, or other acknowledgments. 

Principal research findings from articles with food industry involvement, and a random sample of articles without food industry involvement, were categorized according to the extent to which they supported relevant food industry interests. 

The Results 

Of 1,461, 196 (13.4%) articles reported food industry involvement. The extent of food industry involvement varied by journal, with The Journal of Nutrition (28.3%) having the highest and Pediatric Obesity (3.8%) having the lowest proportion of industry involvement.

Food industry involvement spanned several industry sectors, with processed food manufacturing, dietary supplement manufacturing, and dairy most often represented.

Processed food manufacturers were involved in most articles (77/196, 39.3%). Of articles with food industry involvement, 55.6% reported findings favorable to relevant food industry interests, compared to 9.7% of articles without food industry involvement.

The journals included in this study:

  • Advances in Nutrition
  • Clinical Nutrition
  • International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity
  • International Journal of Obesity
  • Nutrition Research Reviews 
  • Nutrition Reviews, 
  • Journal of Obesity  
  • Pediatric Obesity
  • The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition
  • The Journal of Nutrition.

Future thoughts

Future studies should investigate nutrition-related articles from journals with both nutrition and non-nutrition focus (including, for example, journals in medicine and public health)

Get to know more about glyphosate by watching our full episode here 👇

TIME STAMPS:

00:00 Intro
00:41 Plugs
02:44 Episode Introduction
04:28 About Glyphosate
05:23 How does glyphosate work?
08:05 Glyphosate lawsuits
11:27 What do regulatory agencies in the USA say?
15:43 Glyphosate Products to Avoid
16:39 How do you avoid glyphosate exposure?
18:04 Glyphosate traces in soil, water, and air
21:16 Being vigilant in avoiding Cancer-Causing Glyphosate
23:56 The involvement of the food industry
8:58 Science and spirituality
31:07 The Results
35:25 Huge funding to influence an agenda