So glad there are other nurses interested in learning about parish nursing.
A parish nurse is: 1. A health educator; 2) a personal health counselor; 3) a teacher of volunteers; 4) a laison with community health organizations; 5)a clairifier of the close relationship between faith and health; 6) most importantly a client advocate.
The basic requirements are: BE a registered professional nurse with a current nursing license; and have a baccalaureate degree and two years working in the health field. Experience in any of the following is beneficial: public health, ecducation, nursing homes or care centers, physician's office, school nurse in public schools, medical-surgical nurse, or emergency-outpatinet nurse. The most important qualification is a high degree of spiritual maturity. It is crucial tha the nurse have a talent for counseling.
The nurse's main objectives are to help people assume responsibility for their own health and to help them grasp new insights about the many causes of illness. This entails considerable teaching and the development of various support groups. It is the responsibillity of the parish to create interest in a variety of health-related programs. Aside from B/P checks, parish nurses generally do not give "hands on" care.
There is certification given after completing a training which can be done on the internet or at a local college or university that offers it. University of Indiana gives them over the internet. Its a six week course complete with readings, assignments and written work to be evaluated.
The difference in the parish nurse (PN) as oppose to the faith ministry nurse (FMN) is that the parish nurse extends her role outside the congregation to the surrounding parish. The FMN contains herself strictly to the congregation. Many synogogue nurse's are FMN's since the the word "parish" has been associated over the years to Christian churches. PN's are more akin to public health nurses.
I hope this answers some of your questions.