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The correctional nurse is a registered nurse who specializes in the treatment of inmates in various correctional facilities. These facilities can range from state prison systems to the federal penitentiary system. The nurse in the correctional field must be able to provide first aid to inmates who were victims of various assaults or have come in showing symptoms of various illnesses. There are many aspects to the correctional nurse job as well as long, hard hours worked in sometimes dangerous conditions. This nurse must be able to handle themselves in situations where the patients are attempting to assault them, requiring them to participate in various self defense classes to ensure their safety.
The educational requirements of a correctional nurse is about the same as the requirements for any type of nurse. The aspiring nurse must first go through a degree program specializing in nursing, these degree programs can be in the form of a two year Associates degree or a four year Bachelors degree, both of which can be completed through most of the best online colleges via distance learning over the internet with the use of a virtual classroom. As you go through the degree program, you will also be required to go through clinical training classes where you will gain a type of on the job training through a healthcare facility in your geological area. After you have graduated the degree program of your choice, you must also gain experience in the healthcare industry as well as attend self defense classes that will help you to defend yourself should one of the inmate in the correctional system attempt to attack you. Once all of these qualifications are complete, you may apply for a position as a nurse in the correctional institution.
Job Duties of Correctional Nurse
The duties of a correctional nurse will vary from day to day. You will be in charge of ensuring the health of all the inmates in the facility, providing immunizations as needed as well as attending to injuries sustained through a variety of reasons. Some inmates may attempt to injure themselves in an attempt to be released to a hospital, while others may have been assaulted. In the case of assault, you may be exposed to life threatening injuries where you will need to know how to help them immediately while the ambulance arrives including putting pressure on wounds and performing CPR as needed. Most of the inmates in these facilities do not want to be there, therefore, they may become aggressive and volatile to those who work in the facility. It is because of this aspect that the correctional nurse must be well aware of their surroundings and what can happen if they turn their backs. This can be a very emotionally tolling job where you see violence, hatred and death almost on a daily basis. Suicide rates for the prison system is also very high, therefore, you must also be aware of the mental health of the inmates, providing suicide watch systems for those who you suspect may attempt to hurt themselves. In addition, the corrections nurse may work long hours, including late nights, most holidays and some weekends with overtime earned in a typical week since the demand for nurses in the correctional system are always in high demand.
To become a correctional nurse, you will have to go to school. Enroll in online classes today!