How Do I Become a Precertification Nurse?

Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison

A precertification nurse handles admissions procedures and insurance authorizations for a medical facility. If you want to become a precertification nurse, you will usually have to start with meeting your jurisdiction's requirements for a career in nursing. This often involves becoming a registered nurse or a licensed practical nurse (LPN) via a nurse education program. After completing a nurse education program, you will usually have to pass a certifying or licensing examination to gain the right to practice in your jurisdiction. With licensing in hand, you may then have to seek experience to become a precertification nurse.

Woman with hand on her hip
Woman with hand on her hip

When you want to become a precertification nurse, your first step will probably be completing high school or its equivalent, as this level of education is usually required for admission to a nurse education program. Most nursing programs won't set requirements concerning the courses you take in high school, but including certain classes may help you prepare for the type of instruction you will receive in nursing school. Taking advanced science and health classes, for example, might help you throughout your education and career. Likewise, taking courses that help you improve your communication skills may help. If you do not earn a high school diploma, you can substitute a General Educational Development® (GED®) to gain admission to nursing school.

The length of your nursing program will generally depend on the title you seek. If you want to become a registered nurse, you will likely need to complete a diploma, associate's degree, or bachelor's degree program in nursing. Often, these programs require two to four years of education. If, on the other hand, you want to become a precertification nurse after earning the LPN title, you can enroll in a program that lasts for about a year. After completing a registered nurse or LPN program, you will typically have to pass an exam to gain the certification or licensing required to practice in your jurisdiction.

Besides education and licensing, the requirements you have to meet to become a precertification nurse will likely depend on the employer with which you seek a job. Many will want you to have at least a few years of experience in clinical practice. You may also need leadership skills and at least a couple of years of experience in such nursing areas as case management and discharge planning. Experience with utilization review, which involves the evaluation of treatment requests, is typically helpful as well.

Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison

Nicole’s thirst for knowledge inspired her to become a wiseGEEK writer, and she focuses primarily on topics such as homeschooling, parenting, health, science, and business. When not writing or spending time with her four children, Nicole enjoys reading, camping, and going to the beach.

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