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Paying for your own certifications


Specializes in Med-Surg Tele. Has 7 years experience.

I am OPT at a hospital (I was full time for a year) and I had asked for ACLS as well as MedSurg certification classes.  They would not approve either for me, stating that these are only for charge nurses and since I am not full time, I will not be a charge nurse.  I work weekends, and am often the charge nurse because there is no one else who has enough experience.  I was told I could appeal and request again on the grounds that I do often serve as charge and have been a full time RN with them.  I honestly am thinking of just paying for them myself to avoid the hassle.  Many of friends pay for their certs themselves, but most are contract nurses and one of them has told me my employer owes it to me.  Anyone else just pay for the certs they want? I definitely don't see myself at this hospital in the long run, but am not in a position to search for another job quite yet.  

CharleeFoxtrot, BSN, RN

Has 10 years experience.

I would appeal that. I suggest when you do appeal, submit a list of the days when you acted as charge at the same time. 

mmc51264, ADN, BSN, MSN, RN

Specializes in orthopedic; Informatics, diabetes. Has 9 years experience.

Our ACLS/BLS is provided by provider and specialty certifications are reimbursable. I am ortho certified and got a flat amount (taxed, of course) that covered all costs with a little left over. 

hppygr8ful, ASN, RN, EMT-I

Specializes in Psych, Addictions, SOL (Student of Life). Has 19 years experience.

I've always paid for my own certifications and CEU's keep the records handy and write them off your taxes.


Chickenlady, ADN

Specializes in ER, GI, Occ Health. Has 7 years experience.

ACLS seems like basic entry level for a lot of jobs and I would expect them to pay for it.  Other certs, like my CEN, I paid for myself.  I think the hospital would reimburse me for the test cost if I passed it, but not prep classes or materials.  Once I passed it, I got a bump in the hourly pay. 

I pay for my own if I want it and the hospital won't pay.  Just paid $150 for an advanced EKG course, but will get reimbursed- this time.

Worked travel/per diem for years.  Have paid for CCRN, CEN, TNCC, ENPC.  Pretty sure I have always gotten PALS, ACLS and BLS for free.