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Geriatric Nursing Jobs - How To Become A Geriatric Nurse

Updated on March 25, 2012

A highly rewarding though stressful and demanding area of nursing.

Geriatric Nurses should, like all nurses, be compassionate, patient, cheerful, and able to remain calm under even the most trying of circumstances. They should have excellent communication skills, and be mentally and physically strong.

If you are interested in becoming a Geriatric Nurse, you should get all the experience you can working with the elderly. Even before you start your nursing education, you can experience the elderly population's specific characteristics and needs by volunteering in seniors homes, hospitals and clinics. Elderly individuals have a wealth of knowledge and experience to share though some, merely because of advancing years, may occasionally seem unduly confused, or uncooperative. Decide if you have what it takes to meet the challenges of Geriatric Nursing.

If still in High School, students wishing to enter nursing, should take all the Science Courses available, as well as Mathematics. Health Sciences, Nutrition and English. After graduating from High School, they will need to attend College and obtain a Bachelor Of Science In Nursing degree. Having this Nursing degree qualifies you to take the national licensing exam.

After passing the national exam, you will be qualified to practice as a Registered Nurse. To be eligible to train in geriatrics, most states require that you first practice for two years as a Registered Nurse.  With the additional training in Geriatrics, you will be eligible to apply for certification as a Gerontological Nurse Specialist.  

State requirements vary.  Make sure to check yours.

Further training in Geriatrics would enable you to advance into areas of administration, education, or Geriatric research. Both males and females are needed in these fields.

As their patients are both elderly and ailing, Geriatric Nurses have a unique challenge. In spite of herculean efforts and all that modern science has to offer, loved and cared for patients will decline, and die. If you can face this challenge, America's growing population of elderly will be well served.


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    • doodlebugs profile image

      doodlebugs 8 years ago from Southwest

      Thanks for the good hub on this important nursing job.