How to become a Hospice Nurse

  1. 2
    I am a new LPN and I am going back to school for my BSN this fall. I have a huge interest in becoming a Hospice Nurse and I wanted to know if you have to get any sort of special certifications etc.

    MamaStacey and Joe V like this.
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  3. 7 Comments so far...

  4. 1
    I have an A.A.S in Nursing. My first job out of nursing school was as a RN Case Manager in hospice care. Some companies require 2-3 years of experience in med-surg or palliative care. Don't be discouraged just apply for jobs even if you don't have the requirements they are asking for. Good luck!
    Mrsearly2009 likes this.
  5. 1
    I guess it may very from state to state, or agency to agency, but I'm in Alabama and just got a job as a Hospice RN. I don't have any special certifications. I do have hospital experience, which is usually required and highly recommended, but I haven't been asked about certifications. There is a one you can get, and I will probably work toward it, but as far as I know it's not required.
    Mrsearly2009 likes this.
  6. 1
    There is a cert called chpn (certified hospice/palliative nurse) where I work you make a dollar more an hour if you have it. I work for a hospice doing intake and we require 2 yrs experience.
    Mrsearly2009 likes this.
  7. 1
    When I wrote my 5 year plan for school, my goal was to be in hospice. I didn't pay attention to certification, but I did think about other work that would serve as a good foundation: med/surg, pain management, mental health, community health, and critical care. I think the MH is especially important given what the pt and family are going through once they get to hospice. I suppose I would get certified as well, but that doesn't happen until you have the actual job, so I concentrated on what I'd need to get the job in the first place.
    Mrsearly2009 likes this.
  8. 1
    The cert comes after you have been working for 2 years or more. There are some CEU type offerings you might look for, after you get your RN.

    Best wishes!
    Mrsearly2009 likes this.
  9. 0
    Thank you so much everyone!!!
  10. 1
    as a hospice nurse for 10 years- i believe the most important thing needed to work in hospice care, is a heart and the desire to help patients and their families achieve their end of life goals- It is strongly recommended, though that med surg, oncology or geriatric experience helps- as often you are very often working autonomously and need sharp assessment and symptom management skills, certification comes by taking the national exam after you have hospice experience
    Mrsearly2009 likes this.