Allowing Corpsman to Become Nurses

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    Watching the Presidential debate tonight and a statement by Obama made my head turn. He was relating a story when a corpsman was stating that he has treated wounded soldiers but when he became a civilian he could not use his training or experience to count towards becoming a nurse (unknown which kind). The corpsman was upset that he had to start his education/training from the beginning.

    Obama stated that the requirements to be a nurse (assumed licensure/NCLEX requirements) should be changed to allow corpsman to become nurses (did not state which kind).

    Any thoughts?
    trinsia, cherryames1949, brian, and 4 others like this.
  2. 150 Comments so far...

  3. 16
    No more so than allowing paramedics/emts to become nurses without further education. However, allowing corpsmen (as well as the other aforementioned professions) to gain some credit (test out perhaps of certain nursing classes) could be allowable. BUT, my experience with all 3 is that the skills learned in each serve well for the emergent situation, but transferring those skills to non-emergent is a little more challenging. I often found that students with previous experience as above had a tendency to over assess, make sick when not, etc.
    Archerlpvn, doomsayer, JZ_RN, and 13 others like this.
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    Quote from kakamegamama
    No more so than allowing paramedics/emts to become nurses without further education. However, allowing corpsmen (as well as the other aforementioned professions) to gain some credit (test out perhaps of certain nursing classes) could be allowable. BUT, my experience with all 3 is that the skills learned in each serve well for the emergent situation, but transferring those skills to non-emergent is a little more challenging. I often found that students with previous experience as above had a tendency to over assess, make sick when not, etc.
    It made me pause for a second. It's not nursing that should change there requirements but there training should be done in a manner so that it meets some of the requirement. Obama just was making that hand off the cuff but I looked it up but some of these medics transition into a program where they become a PA. I would think they could develop their program so that they could have. Transition program to nursing. When I was reading on it tonight there role is not really As a nurse but a paramedic and when they are stateside they function similar to a lpn.
    kakamegamama, DawnJ, srimer, and 3 others like this.
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    Actually, corpsmen CAN become nurses in CA, but only if they meet certain requirements. If they meet those requirements, they can sit for the NCLEX-PN and become LVNs.

    Not sure if they could endorse their LVN license into other states though--that would depend on each state's educational requirements for LVN/LPNs.
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    Quote from Meriwhen
    Actually, corpsmen CAN become nurses in CA, but only if they meet certain requirements. If they meet those requirements, they can sit for the NCLEX-PN and become LVNs.

    Not sure if they could endorse their LVN license into other states though--that would depend on each state's educational requirements for LVN/LPNs.
    I did not know that, that is interesting.

    What I thought was significant about his comment was the implication that educational standards for nursing were national and not governed by the states.

    I wonder if there are plans to nationalize?
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    The last I knew, some specific categories of corpsmen and medics could also challenge the NCLEX-PN in Oklahoma and become LPNs. However, my understanding is that the CA and OK licenses obtained in this way cannot be endorsed to other states (because they don't meet the educational requirements for the other states. However, they can use those licenses to get into a standard LPN-to-RN program, graduate from the RN program, and then be eligible for licensure anywhere. I heard the debate and didn't think Obama sounded like he was implying that educational standards for nursing are national -- just that (he thought) it would be nice for there to be an easier path for returning vets to be able to convert their military experiences and skills into civilian licenses and jobs.

    I certainly have not heard anything about "nationalizing" anything to do with nursing education or licensure, and imagine that the states would strenuously resist that.

    I have heard in the past, although I can't swear it's true, that the original invention and point of the PA model was as a means to "translate" and utilize the skills and experience of corpsmen and medics returning from Viet Nam in the civilian world.
    gypsyd8, JMBnurse, sheilamarie, and 3 others like this.
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    They kind of seem like different jobs though right? They aren't out delivering babies and taking care of kids with cancer and such. I could certainly see some type of transition program but do they have all the skills of a nurse?
    Maybe I am wrong and don't know what their job as a corpsman entails.
    *LadyJane*, lindarn, and anotherone like this.
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    Quote from sali22
    They kind of seem like different jobs though right? They aren't out delivering babies and taking care of kids with cancer and such. I could certainly see some type of transition program but do they have all the skills of a nurse?
    Maybe I am wrong and don't know what their job as a corpsman entails.
    In a military hospital, I had a very nice corpsman present when I delivered my child. He was taking care of me as much as everyone else was.

    I'm not exactly sure what corpsmen do in their jobs--from what I've seen in military medical facilities, their job duties seem similar to those of LVNs and MAs. I do think they do a lot more for patient care than most people realize. Hopefully there's some former/current corpsmen here who can provide more info.
    Fiona59 and lindarn like this.
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    Quote from elkpark
    The last I knew, some specific categories of corpsmen and medics could also challenge the NCLEX-PN in Oklahoma and become LPNs. However, my understanding is that the CA and OK licenses obtained in this way cannot be endorsed to other states (because they don't meet the educational requirements for the other states. However, they can use those licenses to get into a standard LPN-to-RN program, graduate from the RN program, and then be eligible for licensure anywhere. I heard the debate and didn't think Obama sounded like he was implying that educational standards for nursing are national -- just that (he thought) it would be nice for there to be an easier path for returning vets to be able to convert their military experiences and skills into civilian licenses and jobs.

    I certainly have not heard anything about "nationalizing" anything to do with nursing education or licensure, and imagine that the states would strenuously resist that.

    I have heard in the past, although I can't swear it's true, that the original invention and point of the PA model was as a means to "translate" and utilize the skills and experience of corpsmen and medics returning from Viet Nam in the civilian world.
    The reason why I was thinking that nationalization of nursing is a possibility is that nursing educational standards and requirements have always been set and regulated by the various state legislatures. I would be very surprised if he brought that topic up as a suggestion during the last Presidential debate of the season. Seems strange to me to bring up a topic like that if he did not mean to act upon it with the federal government. It could have been a simple distraction or time killer in the debate but somehow I doubt it.
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    I remember the President's remark very specifically. The tone of the statement was what caught my attention. Mr. Obama put a strong emphasis on the work nurse; as in, "he could not [even] get a job as a [mere] NURSE! We have to change that!" Words in brackets are my additions to convey the tone of the President's comment. I believe that is what Mr. Obama was trying to convey. If you prefer, read the statement without the inserted words. What do you think? I must say, it rankled this old nurse.


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