With all the abbreviations used in the medical field, it is sometimes hard to differentiate the acronyms from each other. We hope this list is a helpful resource
Typically a two year degree that prepares a student to become a Registered Nurse. Because the ADN typically does not include courses in nursing theory, getting an ADN is a shorter path to becoming an RN, and is cheaper as well.
These nurses have a specialized area of practice, whether it be a specific population, type of care, or a particular problem. Examples would include pediatrics, mental health, or diabetes. Each state has its own licensing requirements, but generally the education level is a Master’s or higher.
Also referred to as a Nursing Assistant (NA) and Patient Care Assistant (PCA), CNAs are the nurses that relay information between the patient and the RN or LPN. Because they are in daily contact with the patient, they are working a fast paced job to not only take care of the basic needs of the patient, but also gather information on the patient’s conditions. While a college degree is not required, certification is needed.
Nurse that deals less with patients and more with administration aspects, such as work schedules, work policies, meetings, and employees. An MSN is the standard degree for this position. The nurse administrator position refers to the management side of nursing.
Nurses with a BSN, MSN, or PhD who are looking to train and teach other nurses. They serve as faculty members in nursing schools and hospitals, and may teach general or specialized courses. Other than teaching, nurse educators may advance to administrative roles, as well as continuing to care for patients.
An RN who has additional education beyond the BSN that allows them to deal with the diagnosis and treatment of acute illnesses and chronic conditions. These clinicians utilize their expertise by preventing disease, diagnosing disease, and treating health conditions.
RNs advise and educate patients and their families about health conditions while providing and coordinating patient care. RNs have different licenses depending on where they are located, and require either an ADN or a BSN. With their knowledge, RNs prevent disease and help patients cope with illness, as well as providing direct patient care to plan, intervene, and promote health. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, registered nursing is among the top ten occupations with the largest job growth.
Find a CNL Program
What education level is required to be a CNL?
You will need at least a MSN with a concentration in Clinical Nurse Leadership or a similar program. This is because a CNL needs to be a resource for their nursing team, and the MSN assures that a nurse is clinically competent to do that. There are also Post-Master’s Certificate programs that will prepare any nurse already carrying an MSN degree for the CNL exam.