Nursing Certifications after RN

  1. 0
    Hello,
    I have been wondering after I get my RN are there any nursing certifications that I can get to increase my pay, and also learn new skills.
  2. 17 Comments so far...

  3. 0
    yes there are many, depending on specialty and area you work. You will need some EXPERIENCE in such areas, and you will WANT it, before seeking certification. HIGH expectations follow certification in any given area, not to be taken lightly. They pay for certification varies by institution and state...some places, there IS no pay increase, others it can be subtantial. But like I said, you need EXPERIENCE first.......
  4. 0
    Check out the ANCC site. http://www.nursingworld.org/ancc/certify/Certs.htm

    It is ONE of the certifying agencies.

    There are others also. My certification is ortho through ONCC.
    It takes a certain period of time worked in specialty, passing a certification examination.....$240 and the hardest test I EVER saw...and continuing education units. For being certified I got to apply to climb the clinical ladder-among other requirements-and when I did climb the ladder I believe the pay increase was 75 cents.
  5. 0
    I'm certified as a CCRN through the American Association of Critical Care Nurses. Back when I was first certified, I believe the requirements were 2 years in critical care experience but it is now less than that. It is a very hard exam and one needs to keep up with CEUs or retake the test every 3 years to remain certified. My current workplace pays $350/yr. for each certification a nurse has. And you are held to a higher standard when you are certified.
  6. 2
    I have my certification through the National Certification Corporation (NCC). They specialize in Maternal-Child Nursing areas. Mine is in "High Risk Neonatal Nursing". This certification body gives us the ability to use the initials "RNC" behind our name. (eg: Jane Doe, RNC) Different certifying bodies have different initials, so you may see several different ones through the years. Also, the NCC has a special certification program for Neonatal Nurse Practitioners too.

    Before being allowed to take the test, we have to have our manager fill out a paper verifying we have had at least 2 full years of recent full-time nursing in our specialty area, so it's not like something you can do as soon as you get out of school.

    The test costs a lot to take and is very difficult. As a comparison, the NCLEX-RN basically tests for "minimum competency" which shows you are "safe to practice nursing". It's like having to pass the test with a C. Certification tests, on the other hand, test for "expertise" in a "specialized" area. It's like having to make an A+ on the test. At least this is how I understand it.

    Our hospital reimbursed us for our test fee, travel and hotel room fees if we passed the test. We also received a $500 per year bonus once a year. Our Clinical Ladder Program included certification as a way of reaching a higher rung... leading to more money and recognition. It also looks good on a resume.

    I was fortunate enough to pass my exam on the first try, but not all people are able until the second time. Some never pass and decide not to try anymore. Remember some of us simply don't test well. Anyway, it feels good when you've been a nurse for a while, to have something to do to help validate your feelings about your work and knowledge. Kind of a pat on the back. We need things in our profession to help us feel like we are continuing to grow professionally.

    By the way, a person can be certified in many different areas. My sister has her certification in Pediatric Nursing (from another certifying body) as well as her High Risk Neonatal Nursing certification from NCC. Most people keep their certification current by submitting continuing education credits to the certifying body every 2-3 years and paying a fee. We can always let our certification lapse if we choose to.

    In case you are interested, here is the web site:

    National Cerftfication Corporation

    Hope this has answered a few of your questions. Wishing you all the best in your nursing career! Sounds like you are a real go-getter and I'm expecting you to have your certification someday too.
    Beauty&Brains90 and mlok like this.
  7. 1
    I'm an ER nurse and through the ENA (emergency nurses assoc) I took and passed the CEN exam (certified emergency nurse). Of course, I also have to have ACLS, PALS, etc. I now keep a total of 11 courses active.
    Beauty&Brains90 likes this.
  8. 0
    I'm a CRRN and have been for 11 years. The test was not easy and the requirements to document CEUs can be a pain. BUT, the CRRN has opened a lot of doors for me and has given me an employment edge at several jobs. At my most current job, I was hired out of a large pool of applicants...and I was told that certification was a main reason I was chosen. It does show employers you have taken your profession seriously and have gone beyond the minimum standard.
  9. 0
    I'm a certified Med-Surg nurse. I let it lapse and am taking the test again this May. It's a tough test. It gets me.... .50/hr more! But at least my organization respects it. For certain positions, like permanent Charge Nurses they want a BSN or a certification. (of course any higher positions require BSN's).

    Enright, is CRRN a "Rehab RN"? I forget. And your right keeping up with those CEU's is a pain.
  10. 0
    Yes, CRRN is the cert for rehabilitation. It ends up being a love hate thing in your life....lots of care and feeding (CEUs) but it can bear fruit.

    I don't know if this is true for other specialties but rehab went through a crisis of membership within the last few years. They were set to require a BSN and then dropped that. They have also broadened the definition, I suspect to be inclusive of case managers and some occ health people who don't want the even bigger hassle of the COHN (Occ Health) certification!
  11. 0
    Originally posted by Enright
    Yes, CRRN is the cert for rehabilitation. It ends up being a love hate thing in your life....lots of care and feeding (CEUs) but it can bear fruit.

    I don't know if this is true for other specialties but rehab went through a crisis of membership within the last few years. They were set to require a BSN and then dropped that. They have also broadened the definition, I suspect to be inclusive of case managers and some occ health people who don't want the even bigger hassle of the COHN (Occ Health) certification!
    In med-surg there are two separate certifications. One for BSN's and on for RNs. I forget what the BSN one is called I think "Board Certifice Med-Surg...." They were thinking too of allowing only BSN's to be certified, but that decreased their applications by too many, so they came up with this idea.

    I'm glad your certification has worked well for you.


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