Alabama Nursing Programs

Disparate populations, rural poverty and a community seeking to replace its tumultuous history with health and progress are just a few of the factors in Alabama’s desperate need for nurses at this time. This southernmost state is in the market for additional tens of thousands of nursing professionals to commit their careers to the well-being of its diverse citizens and keep it on the path to change and wellness in the face of economic and social hardship.

The Alabama Board of Nursing is the best source for reliable and current information on licensing and regulations, NCLEX exams, continuing education, and hospital/employer contact information. In the medical field, appropriate and current licensing is an all important indicator of qualifications. Through the Board, you can apply for a state nursing license, verify another individual’s license, appeal denied licenses, and reinstate a license that has been retired. Montgomery’s ASNA, the Alabama State Nurses Association, is the honorary representative of those providing care in the state and a major resource for nursing advocacy issues.

A Rosy Outlook for Potential Alabama Nurses

Considering the severity of the nursing shortage in Alabama, which puts the state’s population of professional nurses at about half of what it should be, those who are looking into entering a nursing career in the state will be pleased and welcomed with generous pay rates and benefits. There is an enormous amount of accredited nursing programs in the state, and even more hospitals, clinics, and research labs that are in dire need of trained professionals.

Looking ahead, Alabama expects that by 2015, they will lose even more of their current nurses and go a staggering 15%-25% deeper into nursing famine, a decrease of several thousand individuals. In light of this prediction, it is clear that the time is ripe to apply at one of Alabama’s many hospitals, nursing homes, or care centers as the state is offering big-time scholarship initiatives and monetary rewards for those who can make up the deficit of professional caregivers.

Jobs and Education for Alabama Nurses

Over 60 nursing programs at every level are open to interested students, along with major scholarship monies available to Alabama residents and especially those who are willing to commit their time and labor in-state. Large state schools like the University of Alabama (UAB) have programs leading to every conceivable type of nursing degree, including BSN, AMNP, DNP, RN-BSN, MSN, and PhD. UA also houses a hospital which acts as a major employer to strong graduates in the field.

The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) offers the most comprehensive scholarship aid program for up-and-coming nurses who are in need of financial aid. Their distinguished School of Nursing includes a $5.2 million endowment funding 59 different scholarships, as well as a spread of fellowship, traineeship and loan programs for qualifying students. The College of Nursing and Allied Health at the University of North Alabama offers accelerated 15 month programs for those eager to get out into the workforce.

The 43,000 RNs in the state of Alabama make an average of $54,120 annually, while the 14,000 LP/vocational nurses make an average of $34,690. This pay increases rapidly past entry level and among the ranks of those working for the most prestigious members of the Alabama Hospital Association network of employers.

Average Salaries for Nurses in Alabama

Data from BLS 2012 10th Percentile 50th Percentile 90th Percentile
Registered Nurses $40,440.00 $54,120.00 $73,270.00
Licensed Practical Nurses $25,170.00 $34,690.00 $45,020.00

References:

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Outlook Handbook, Occupational Employment Statistics, and Employment Projections http://www.bls.gov/
The American Health Care Association http://www.ahcancal.org/research_data/
Kaiser Family Foundation http://statehealthfacts.org/
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation http://rwjf.org/

Nursing Programs in Alaska

Overview of Alaskan Nursing Needs

Alaska’s major cities of Anchorage, Juneau and Fairbanks house some of the country’s best hospitals. Unfortunately, these institutions lack the necessary number of nurses that they need to maintain their standards of quality care. The good news is that the state’s nursing shortage offers a major foot in the door for any prospective nursing student who wishes to take up practice in this chilly northwestern extension of the contiguous US. Although there are over two dozen hospitals in Alaska, there are only a handful of nursing degree programs in the state, making the call for qualified, trained nurses widespread throughout the state.

Licensed nurses through the Alaska Board of Nursing can earn a substantial living while serving citizens of the country’s largest and least populated state. The Board serves the nursing community by endorsing their qualifications through licensing, continuing education efforts, and maintaining high standards of practice that are consistent throughout the state. Those who are in the business of shaping the state’s health care are not alone in their endeavors. In fact, 7000 of the state’s nursing professionals from all levels are represented as a single empowered force by the Alaska Nurses Association, a community leader in health and safety.

Job Outlook for Alaska’s Nurses

Of the 26 hospitals in Alaska, all are suffering from a persistent shortage of nurses. If the average annual Registered Nurse income of $80,570 sounds appealing to you, head to Alaska to begin your nursing career with a starting salary significantly higher than that of more populated states. Astonishingly, the 90th percentile of annual wages for RNs in Alaska exceeds a triple-figure income. Because of the higher cost of living, remote access, and generally robust quality of education and career in Alaska, entering nurses are paid more in this state than in most others.

In Alaska, the demand for nursing professionals is high and the supply is running lower than ever. Those who get a certification or degree as a LP or RN in Alaska can expect to be quickly and gratefully employed and compensated well, though much of their work may involve those in remote locations, air travel, and challenges specific to a vast, cold land and a mix of rural and urban pathologies.

Nursing Jobs and Education in Alaska

Because the Alaskan land mass is so enormous and the population is comparatively tiny, nurses who are willing to travel on a daily or weekly basis are even more highly sought after than those who are stationary. Travel nurses who can visit rural clinics or far away towns can often increase their earnings by as much as 1/3 by offering their services to a diversity of locations.

The University of Alaska has locations in Anchorage and Fairbanks. Both branches of these major academic institutions offer a plethora of scholarships for outstanding students in their School of Nursing. Degrees from entry-level Associates to Master’s of Science can be achieved at UA with the help of scholarship incentives. Generous financial opportunities like the Western Institute of Nursing New Scholar Award or the Roger DeSmith Renal/Diabetes¬†Research Award for Nursing Students are only available to those in the nursing program who are highly motivated and at the top of their class.

Providence Health and Services and their associated medical center in Anchorage is the largest employer of nurses in the state. Other highly respected employers can be found through the Alaska State Hospital and Nursing Home Association (ASHNHA).

Average Salaries for Nurses in Alaska

Data from BLS 2012 10th Percentile 50th Percentile 90th Percentile
Registered Nurses $60,290.00 $80,570.00 $105,970.00
Licensed Practical Nurses $37,850.00 $52,570.00 $67,370.00

References:

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Outlook Handbook, Occupational Employment Statistics, and Employment Projections http://www.bls.gov/
The American Health Care Association http://www.ahcancal.org/research_data/
Kaiser Family Foundation http://statehealthfacts.org/
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation http://rwjf.org/

Nursing Degrees in Arizona

The dry desert of the state of Arizona is lacking in more than water – the state is short of several thousand nurses for its many hospitals, end-of-life care centers, and clinics. Not only is the population of the state growing, and therefore requiring more health professionals, but the demand for nurses has far exceeded the supply for a number of years.

The shortage of nurses is troubling, and coupled with the recent major recession it has created a kind of healthcare crisis in the state of Arizona. Now is the time for qualified individuals from all over the country to step in and boost the medical community before the state slips further into a nursing desert.

Outlook for Future Arizona Nurses

The conglomeration of 75,000 active nurses that are currently employed in Arizona must increase by nearly a third over the next decade just to accommodate the rise in level of need, especially in rural areas where the closest care facility is an hour or more away. With a mass of new hospitals under construction and many young clinics just getting on their legs, there is a big opportunity for nurses who are just starting their careers or those coming in from another state who wish to get re-licensed in Arizona. Fortunately, new nurses will be pleased to find an average salary in the top quarter percentile in the nation with LPNs/LVNs earning around $50,000 yearly and RNs earning about $71,000.

Jobs and Licensing for Arizona Nurses

Those who are ready to apply their skills to remedy the communities of urban and rural Arizona will be met with grateful citizens and a state government that is eager and ready to support its next generation of healthcare experts. These incentives occur mainly through plentiful scholarships for nursing education offered by schools like the University of Arizona in bustling Tucson or Central Arizona College in Coolidge.

Even fully online schools like the University of Phoenix offer accredited degree programs that give working students the chance to receive their LPN/LVN, RN, BSN, or MSN. This school even offers several unique dual-degree programs, such as the MSN/Master of Health Administration qualification, perfect for students who are interested in administrative nursing careers. While the major state universities all offer Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in nursing, many more smaller community colleges in Arizona have opportunities for LPN/LVN diplomas and Associates degrees.

Once a potential nurse has graduated from one of the 36 colleges offering nursing programs, they may be lured in by major employers who have locations all over the state, such as Banner Medical, St. Joseph’s Medical Center, and Catholic Healthcare, according to the Arizona Hospital and Healthcare Association. The representative group in place to support all Arizona nursing professionals, the Arizona Nurses Association, is also a great resource for job openings, governmental news updates, and solidarity for nurses faced with a state in dire need.

Licensure occurs through the Arizona State Board of Nursing, who doles out RN, LPN, and CNA certificates for those who qualify and meet the minimum requirements of the examination. License applications can be downloaded from their website. The Board also maintains nursing standards that apply to both urban and rural in-state hospitals, as well as monitoring discipline, complaints, and occasional nursing fraud.

Average Salaries for Nurses in Arizona

Data from BLS 2012 10th Percentile 50th Percentile 90th Percentile
Registered Nurses $51,980.00 $71,210.00 $92,760.00
Licensed Practical Nurses $39,360.00 $50,120.00 $61,210.00

References:

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Outlook Handbook, Occupational Employment Statistics, and Employment Projections http://www.bls.gov/
The American Health Care Association http://www.ahcancal.org/research_data/
Kaiser Family Foundation http://statehealthfacts.org/
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation http://rwjf.org/
Arizona State Board of Nursing http://www.azbn.gov/