Hi all, it's my first time here; first post:
Well i've always been interested in nursing and law as well, and when the time came to decide i decided to go towards law. Im now a Paralegal major in south Texas.
Up until today, i had never heard of such profession as legal nurse. We had a speaker in school today who mentioned this, and i started researching nursing and ended up here.
My question is, do you have to be an RN and then
study law, or can it be the other way around? I'm so interested in law but am not thinking of law school, and even studying law i cannot stop thinking about being a nurse. But if i can do both, how would i go about that?
Would i have to switch majors, apply for nursing school, get my Associate's, and then take some law courses?
I'm so excited that this career combines both of my interests. Im only 20, so i hope i can get some advice ASAP so i can get going. Any advice would be of great help.
Thanks so much, and i hope none of you get angry that im joining, you know, not being a nurse and all...
Oct 10, '06
Quote from vane20
hi all, it's my first time here; first post:
well i've always been interested in nursing and law as well, and when the time came to decide i decided to go towards law. im now a paralegal major in south texas.
up until today, i had never heard of such profession as legal nurse. we had a speaker in school today who mentioned this, and i started researching nursing and ended up here.
my question is, do you have to be an rn and then
study law, or can it be the other way around? i'm so interested in law but am not thinking of law school, and even studying law i cannot stop thinking about being a nurse. but if i can do both, how would i go about that?
would i have to switch majors, apply for nursing school, get my associate's, and then take some law courses?
i'm so excited that this career combines both of my interests. im only 20, so i hope i can get some advice asap so i can get going. any advice would be of great help.
thanks so much, and i hope none of you get angry that im joining, you know, not being a nurse and all...
welcome vane20 to the site!!
i will attempt to answer some of your questions, but i refer you to siri for more information as she is an experienced clnc.
in order to be an lnc you do have to be an rn, but you don't really study specific laws as a basis of your practice as an lnc. the professional foundation of the lnc is nursing. the lnc is valued in the legal arena for his/her health care education and experience rather than knowledge of the law. but an understanding of general law practices is important. i think your training as a paralegal will be very valuable in your pursuit of a lnc career.
it is recommended that you have a few years experience as an rn before pursuing a career as an lnc. you do not have to be certified to be an lnc. in fact, there is a difference between a certificate and being certified. many lnc courses grant a certificate upon successful completion of their program and taking a test. currently, the only lnc certification program accredited by the american board of nursing specialties is one given by the aalnc upon completion of certain criteria including lnc experience and passing an exam.
once you get a nursing degree, you have different options for obtaining lnc training. you don't need to have special training to be an lnc, but it is recommended. there are several online classes, as well as seminar classes.
good luck as you continue to pursue this as a possible career.
be sure and read the stickies on this site as well as go to www.aalnc.org
for more information.
Last edit by tnbutterfly on Oct 10, '06
Oct 10, '06
Quote from vane20
THANK YOU TNBUTTERFLY AND MADWIFE2002!!
I spoke with the head of the Paralegal program at my school and i told her i was interested in going for that. She said I'd have to be an RN, but i told her i didnt want to switch majors, especially because im doing better than most in my legal classes. So she told me that she was going to try to add some medical courses to the program, or she was gonna try to make them available to us.
I really hope she does, cause she said that then I'd have to get 2 degrees or go into nursing, but i read the requirements to be admitted into the program and i'd hate to be on a waiting list
Once upon a time I was a paralegal...I guess I still am though I don't do it anymore. Like you, I was interested in both but I went with the paralegal program because I was a single mom with 3 kids and really didn't desire being destitute any longer than necessary and there was a 2 year wait even then (1991).
After my kids grew up, I went to nursing school and am now an LPN working on my RN. One of my instructors is a legal nurse and she told me that I probably wouldn't need anymore schooling to be a legal nurse once I finish my RN. I would not be certified though.
I doubt that adding a few "medical courses" to a paralegal program will cut it. In order to become an RN, which is a requirement for being a CLNC, you have to attend and graduate from an accredited RN program, be it ADN, BSN, MSN. When I was a paralegal I worked on PI cases and frankly it was difficult because I had no real knowledge of the terminology, diseases, injuries on all those medical records I had to deal with.. A few medical classes isn't going to rectify this problem....
Nursing courses are generally only offered in sequence to students accepted into the nursing program. There's not enough room for those who want to be nurses much less space for people who are in other majors. If you really want to do this and complete the parelegal program, getting two degrees is the reality of the situation.....as is being on a waiting list. There are hundreds of thousands of people in the US that don't get in a nursing program every year because there's no room and these are people who want to be nurses. The current waiting list at my school is 2 1/2 years...and these are people who have finished pre-requisites, PAX-RN, etc.
Insofar as nursing being a bloody business, nurses are exposed to blood, vomit, urine, feces, mucous, needles, disease, etc. etc. etc. Just part of the job. I too was a bit freaked the first time I had to give a shot....I have to laugh at myself when I look back...dry mouth, shaky, broke into a sweat...:smackingf:selfbonk:
Good luck in whatever you decide..
Last edit by charebec65 on Oct 10, '06
Oct 12, '06
Certified Legal Nurse Consultants attend a two-three day seminar and take an exam. They are Registered Nurses. However, given the aforementioned, they have minimal legal training and competence
This is very misleading information. The certified LNC is NOT an expert in the law. We compliment and assist the attorney-client as well as other legal entities. We are experts in nursing and possess the unique ability to apply our knowledge to medical-legal issues.
Our education in legal matters allows us to have a better understanding of the system.
Last edit by sirI on Oct 12, '06