By OIAH Staff
The flexibility of the nursing profession is echoed in the educational options. There are many levels within nursing. The Ohio Institute of Allied Health offers educational programs that help you break into the field or to advance in your career. STNA or State Tested Nurse Assistant is the fastest way to get into the nursing field. Many nurse assistants then choose to continue their journey and become a Licensed Practical Nurse, often called an LPN. For those looking to progress, many choose to practice as a Registered Nurse after completing the necessary schooling. Below is a little bit more info about each.
State Tested Nurses Aide (STNA) is an entry-level and critical position in the nursing field. It requires a short training program, often only taking three weeks. The Ohio Department of Health (ODH) tracks all individuals who pass the state nurse aide test. Check out the Ohio Nurses Aide Registry here. ODH-approved courses must be no less than 75 hours and include both classroom and clinical experience. Students learn basic nursing skills, personal care and about mental health. Other important topics include infection control, promoting resident independence and therapeutic communication skills. If you are thinking about becoming a nurse, becoming an STNA is the perfect place to start.
A Licensed Practical Nurse or LPN must learn about biology, anatomy and physiology. As well as social, behavior and nursing sciences to provide the appropriate nursing care. They also must work under the direction of a licensed healthcare professional, such as a physician, dentist, chiropractor, or registered nurse. It is important that an LPN can accurately observe their patients, help educate patients and give the proper medications. Many LPNs also help create and evaluate treatment plans. If you work as a Licensed Practical Nurse you will be required to observe, document and report objective and subjective data about your patients. You will also have the opportunity to implement each patients’ nursing care and help to revise and evaluate that plan.
Registered Nurses (RN) lend not only their skills, but also their judgment when caring for each and every patient. RNs assess the health of patients and craft nursing care plans. They are also trained to recognize patterns and think through those plans to identify potential problems. A typical day for a Registered Nurse may include; analyzing data, establishing and modifying a nursing diagnosis, implementing and communicating a plan of nursing care.
Both Licensed Practical Nurses and Registered Nurses are regulated by the Ohio Board of Nursing. In order to become a registered nurse or a practical nurse, students must graduate from an OBN approved program. The Ohio Institute of Allied Health’s Nursing Education Program, Registered Nursing Diploma and Practical Nursing Diploma Program have full approval from the OBN. A student’s next step would be to take and pass the NCLEX-RN and NCLEX-PN test, respectively.