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Community Health Nursing

Nursing specialties are constantly evolving and expanding. In today’s technologically integrated economy, the demand for more skilled expertise is high. The healthcare sectors in every country are booming due to the advancement in medicine and nursing. There are over 2.5 million nurses across the nation that are presently providing various healthcare services. Their input, dedication, and skill are vital to keep the healthcare service delivery system running smoothly. With so many nurses employed, the demand is still increasing steadily. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment rate of nurses will grow in the upcoming years.
 

Among the many nursing specialties, community health nursing has acquired an important position. The major difference between community nursing and other nursing fields is that a community health nurse aims at providing healthcare services to groups and communities. Instead of working with individuals, community health nurses develop and design healthcare plans for families. There are six basic elements that define this field of nursing.
 

  • Rehabilitation
  • Treatment of disorders
  • Prevention of health problems
  • Promotion of healthy living styles
  • Evaluation
  • research

 
How to become a Community Health Nurse
 
Individuals who wish to join this occupation will need to first equip themselves with the right nursing skills and education. Employers often demand nursing qualifications, skill evaluation, and practical experience. One can start off by first enrolling in a basic program such as an LPN or an RN degree. Both of the programs focus on nursing fundamentals and clinical skill development.
 
It is necessary for all community health nurses to obtain at least a bachelor’s degree in nursing. BSN degree programs are available at many renowned nursing schools. The program takes around four years to complete. Students enrolled in BSN programs will spend the first few semesters developing a sound foundation of basic nursing knowledge. Further on in the program, more emphasis is laid upon the specialization area and subjects such as faith community nursing. Usually the program will entail a number of clinical hours that must be performed in order to complete the program. These hours will demonstrate the student’s level of practical experience and skill. After this program is complete, one can also enhance their skills by enrolling in a community health nursing program.
 
Licensing
 
Licensing is one of the most important steps towards becoming a qualified nurse. One must appear in the state’s nursing examination. This test will determine a student’s readiness for the occupation. The licensing test is known as the NCLEX (National Council Licensure Examination).
 
Job Description and Pay scale
 
Community health nurses do not necessarily have to work in hospitals. They can be hired by various non-profit organizations, educational institutions, and advocacy agencies. Community health nurse roles will depend upon the healthcare setting or organization. Some key job duties include managing cases, devising healthcare plans, advising communities, providing information, and coordinating groups. The entry-level salary for community healthcare professionals is approximately $21,000 per year. This figures increases with more experience and time on the job. According to research, community health nurses with over five years of experience make around $40,000 per year.

Ask an Expert

Q:Can you give me some information about community health nursing?

A:Community health nursing is a specialty field that focuses on providing health care to communities and the larger population. Nurses that specialize in this field care for entire populations and help educate them about health issues, prevention, and safety. There are many healthcare clinics, community clinics, and public health care programs that are managed by community nurses.

Q:I would like to know what specialization courses I can pursue in community health nursing programs?

A:Community nursing programs are geared towards providing individuals with an understanding of the field. Students can also pursue a sub-category as specialization. The options available for specialization may vary from college to college, but generally include the following: assessment and health promotion, human exceptionality, health education, primary healthcare, and nursing management.

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