The field of health care relies on care providers and specialists at all different levels of education. There are no superstars in health care—everyone needs to work together for the good of patients and for the best possible outcomes. As a nurse, you’ve likely been part of a health care team and experienced what it’s like to save a patient’s life and triumph as a team.
If you’re ready to use this experience to have an even more positive impact on patients in Tennessee, consider becoming a clinical nurse specialist.
Clinical nurse specialists work in many different fields and settings. For example, some clinical nurse specialists work in academic settings to help students manage their medical concerns. Their services may also be used in clinics, hospitals, and nursing homes. Learn more about clinical nurse specialist programs in Tennessee and what they cover.
Choosing the right school is the first step to becoming a clinical nurse specialist in Tennessee. You must choose a graduate program that focuses on clinical experience, research, and leadership. You may want to start by choosing a clinical specialty or area of expertise and then looking for schools that have that program. Common options include acute emergency care, gerontology, and pediatrics.
From there, you can delve into your curriculum and become familiar with the learning outcomes of your chosen program. Your school may help you become an effective leader, learn how to read and apply research, and perform complicated clinical procedures without the oversight of other care providers.
To meet these goals, plan on taking advanced nursing courses. Courses that may be part of your curriculum include Foundations of Advanced Nursing Practice, Advanced Pathophysiology, Research Design and Methods, Health Care Leadership, Advanced Health Assessment, and Evidence-Based Nursing Practice.
At every step in the educational process, you can become more confident in your skills by working in various clinical settings. You may spend well over 500 hours in clinical settings like hospitals and nursing homes.
One benefit of working in a high-demand field like nursing is the variety of financial aid options that are available. By spending a little bit of time looking into opportunities every year, you may be able to save money and avoid student loans. Join the Tennessee Nurses Association to take advantage of their offerings. West Tennessee Healthcare funds a number of scholarship and grant programs, particularly if you’re willing to work there after graduation. The East Tennessee Foundation awards nursing scholarships to those who reside or study in the eastern part of Tennessee.
Before you can begin working independently and changing lives as a clinical nurse specialist, you have to go through the certification and licensing procedures of Tennessee. First, reach out to the American Nurses Credentialing Center to become certified in your specialized area of study. Once you have national certification, you can contact the Tennessee Board of
Nursing to apply for licensure as an advanced practice nurse. When both of these steps are complete, you can work to the full extent of your scope of practice.
For years to come, clinical nurse specialists may enjoy a great earning potential and job outlook. Per CNN Money, the average salary for a clinical nurse specialist is $86,500 per year. They expect to see a 26% increase in job openings by 2022.
It’s time to put your education to work and change Tennessee health care. Contact clinical nurse specialist programs in Tennessee to get started today.