Nurses who have ever thought about ways to expand what they get out of their neonatal nursing careers should consider free NICU CEUs (or continuing education units for the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit). NICU nurses already enjoy a share of some of the most profound, rewarding work on the planet, and widening their career options and skill areas can only make that work more fulfilling.
Whether a nurse already works in a neonatal setting and is considering honing their expertise in order to skill up or fulfill a requirement for a credential, or is perhaps just now considering where their career in nursing will take them, free NICU CEUs can help. Before making a decision, it is helpful to consider what a NICU nurse is, who can pursue these courses, where they can be found and what the potential benefits might be.
What is an NICU Nurse?
NICU nurses are a subset of nurses among neonatal nurse practitioners. This category, which includes nurses that work with newborns who are healthy, need some extra care after birth, or are seriously at risk and require hospitalization in the NICU, is itself a specialization of Registered Nurses.
RNs make on average $64,690 per year and belong to a field that can expect 26% growth between 2010 and 2020, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. To become an NICU nurse, applicants must also have completed a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, putting them even higher up in their labor pool. Since NICU nurses have considerably more expertise than the average RN, these statistics bode well for them; they generally boast more money and more job security than the average RN, and completing CEUs only increases the chances of an interesting, fulfilling career.
Who can take Advantage of these Opportunities?
Anyone who is already working as an NICU nurse can take continuing education in the field. So long as the requirements for the RN, BSN, and specializations have already been met, then CEUs are applicable to the nurse. If a nurse is thinking about working in this field, but has not yet entered it, it is advisable to meet all necessary requirements before looking around for free CE classes.
Where can Free CEUs for NICU Nurses be found?
Most nurses who specialize already belong to societies geared toward their focus areas. If a nurse does not, they can always consider joining a society both for the material benefits, as well as the career boost offered by surrounding oneself with similarly expert colleagues.
Among these material benefits is the potential to receive continuing education units for free. Although the membership does cost money, enrolling in a society like the Academy of Neonatal Nursing, for instance, grants fifteen contact hours per year at no extra cost. Anyone interested in the types of courses offered, how much they charge, and what it means to receive them gratis should take a look at their web page.
Other places to get free CEUs for NICU nurses include hospitals or clinics, universities in the area, or online accreditation centers that might be able to offer some of their classes at reduced or no-cost prices. The best bet to find quality CEUs is to look around and ask other nurses in the field.
What are the Potential Benefits of Free CEUs?
Continuing Education is important in every field, but especially in nursing where lives are at stake. Sometimes CE is required by the state; more information can be found about that here. However, even when CE is not required, keeping up to date on the newest developments in the field is important. It ensures that skills are sharp, and nurses are always on the cutting edge. Plus, getting more credits under the belt as a nurse can expand the repertoire of abilities, make nurses more valuable as employees in many types of settings.
Unfortunately, sometimes classes are expensive. Though, lucky nurses may have their classes compensated up front or afterwards, many are responsible for their own continuing education upkeep, which makes it more important than ever to know where to find good CEUs for free.