You did it – you have become a registered nurse. You went through school, completed your residency program, and passed the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX – www.ncsbn.org/nclex.htm) test. And now that you have landed a job, you can put all of those valuable lessons to work. Similar to any other professions, there’s bound to be numerous changes that you are going to experience throughout your career as medical and technology developments improve, as well as staff turnover and policy changes. Not to mention, the certain troubleshooting and other ethical dilemmas you are sure to go through at some point in your tenure as a registered nurse.
What do you do when these difficult situations comes up? Well, first of all, know that there are various nursing resources out there at your disposal. You can choose to confide in a co-worker for input. Or, you can open your inquiry up to many more registered nurses just like yourself in one of the many online nursing forums. A nursing forum may be an extremely valuable resource because you can post any dilemma or question you are facing and get feedback from thousands of RNs just like you. Here is a look at some of the best nursing forums on the internet:
NurseZone.com: Tips, resume creators, events, and blogs on how to advance in nursing all make up the website and forum, NurseZone. There are sections for studying tips, a section for the NCLEX exam preparation, as well as financial aid and school information for those interested in going into nursing.
AllNurses: More of a resource for nursing students than it is for certified registered nurses (although there are sections of the site that offer practical advice and helpful information for certified nurses), but a helpful resource nonetheless. The site features a forum that allows nursing students to pose questions about school curriculums and a place to share trends, ideas and anything else related to the study of nursing. Thread posts include the likes of “Pre-nursing student” and “TEAS exam help.” The site consists of over 600,000 members and offers free sign-up. The site also features separate sections for nurse educators and specialty nurses.
NursingVoices: Is not as much of a social media network as NurseConnect.com, but strictly an online forum and message board. It consists of over 15,000 registered users and thread categories such as and “Politics/Debates,” “Laugher is the Best Medicine,” and “General Nursing Topics.” All nurses need to do at NursingVoices is register to join the conversation in any one of the forum threads.
NurseConnect.com: An online nursing forum that offers a variety of helpful resources to registered nurses. There are blogs, articles, and a forum featuring various topics of which to post and solicit feedback under and job boards. NurseConnect.com is more than just a forum for nurses, but a social media platform where nurses can go to connect with former and current co-workers, while viewing job posts to land that next nursing gig. And, membership to this social media site is free.
Facebook: Yes, Facebook – the social network. What does Facebook have to do with nursing? Well, it depends. Facebook allows its members to create user groups consisting of members that share common interests. There are groups for restoration professionals, engineers, stay-at-home moms, and even nurses. However, joining a group on Facebook is a little bit more exclusive than joining one of the public nursing forums because you usually have to be invited by a member to join. However, this is also advantageous because not everyone can join, which helps keep out the potential spammers and troublemakers. LinkedIn groups are also viable nursing forum options.
Just because you have graduated with a nursing degree and passed your tests, it does not mean that you are done learning about the profession. You will unquestionably learn on the go at your nursing job. And, you may also obtain insight and knowledge from participating and joining on one of the many nursing forums out there that are at your disposal. The resources are there, why not use them? What’s more is that most of them are free, so what do you have to lose?