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The basic requirement to enroll in such programs varies.

A high school diploma or GED is usually enough to enroll in a certificate or undergraduate level nursing degree program.

The most common type of certification is the Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) certification which can be completed in as little as a year.

Nursing is an extremely rewarding and diverse branch of healthcare which focuses on providing medical care to patients, assisting doctors and performing a variety of managerial and administrative duties in hospitals and clinics.

While nurses are mainly charged with looking after patients and ensuring their comfort, they also carry out various diagnostic tests, perform physiotherapy and take care of administrative tasks such as record keeping and medical billing.

Due to their interaction with the public, they are also responsible for educating people on basic healthcare and hygiene principles.

Numerous nursing degrees and certifications are offered on-campus and online by a number of colleges and special training institutes around the country.

Certifications are earned after a specified assessment process and are meant to be renewed regularly.

Registered nurses are not legally required to be certified.

State licensure is sufficient to practice professional nursing, while certifications are deemed to be a voluntary concern which can be obtained through specific organizations.

A more advanced program would be Associate Degree in Nursing or Bachelor of Science in Nursing, which can help graduates become Registered Nurses (RNs).

These programs may require completing an internship at a healthcare organization in order to help students develop a working knowledge of their field.

In a nurse certification program, a nongovernmental agency validates a nurse’s qualifications for practice, based on pre-determined standards.

Typically nursing programs are affiliated with professional associations and trade organizations that are interested in raising standards and quality of the healthcare sector.