A treatment nurse cares for patients who have wounds, ulcers and burns. This job usually requires the same amount of education as any other nursing position, such as graduation from a two-year registered nursing program or a 12-month licensed practical nursing program. It usually requires nurse licensing as well. After graduation, you can focus on the skills that are needed to become a treatment nurse by first gaining at least a couple of years of experience as a nurse and then seeking jobs that specifically involve wound care. Eventually, you might seek certification in an effort to earn higher pay as a treatment nurse.
Post-high school education usually is required if you want to become a treatment nurse. In most jurisdictions, you will need to complete a nurse education program that prepares you to earn a licensed practical nurse or registered nurse license. You might secure a job as a treatment nurse with either of these credentials, but becoming a registered nurse usually requires more education and often leads to jobs that offer more responsibility and higher pay. Licensed practical nurses work under the supervision of registered nurses.
If you choose to seek registered nurse licensing to become a treatment nurse, you will have to complete a nurse education program that grants a diploma, associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree. Diploma and associate’s degree programs are usually the shortest. A diploma program might last for two or three years, and an associate’s degree program might require about two years of studying. Such an educational program usually includes classroom and laboratory education as well as a clinical component that involves observation and contact with patients.
A licensed practical nurse education program usually will require less of a time commitment than a registered nursing program. This type of program, which is often offered through a vocational school or a community college, usually lasts for about 12 months, and there are some that require as little as a nine-month commitment. As with a registered nurse program, enrollment means that you will learn in a classroom and gain clinical practice under the supervision of licensed nurses and your instructors.
After you have met the educational requirements for becoming a nurse, you will need to seek licensing in your jurisdiction. This process usually includes completing an application, providing documentation of your nursing education and taking an exam. If you pass the exam, you will receive a license to practice as a registered or licensed practical nurse.
With your license secured, you will be ready to take the next step toward becoming a treatment nurse. This usually means gaining nursing experience, because many employers will require you to have a couple of years of nursing experience before hiring you as a treatment nurse. After you become a treatment nurse and have significant experience, you might consider seeking certification. Although this does require you to pass another exam, some employers offer more attractive opportunities to nurses who are certified.