Can LPNs Become Case Managers?
Are you a Licensed Practical Nurse, or LPN, who wants to advance to a better-paying, still nursing-related career? If so, you will be happy to know that there are many great options available to you. One of the most popular advancement options among practical nurses today is case management. If this sounds like something you would enjoy, the following information can help you reach your goal.
Complete an LPN to BSN Bridge Program
The first step involved in advancing to a case management position for an LPN is earning a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) degree. The quickest way to accomplish this as an LPN is to enroll in an accelerated LPN to BSN bridge program. In this way, you will be able to cut the length of your training program in half.
This is made possible because many of the credits you earned during your LPN training can be applied to your BSN program. Furthermore, more and more higher education facilities today allow LPN to BSN students to complete various theoretical courses online. This can be great if you are currently employed full time.
Study for and Pass the NCLEX-RN Exam
After graduating from your LPN to BSN training program, you need to study for and pass the NCLEX-RN licensing exam and become a registered nurse (RN). Be sure to begin studying for your exam well in advance of your expected date of graduation. Resources you may want to consider using to help you prepare for your exam include:
- NCLEX-RN Study Groups
- NCLEX-RN Preparatory Courses
- LPN to BSN Program Notes and Textbooks
- Online NCLEX-RN Sample Exams
- Online NCLEX-RN Flashcards
- NCLEX-RN Study Guides (online or resource books)
Obtain Experience as an RN
The third step to becoming a nursing case manager is to seek out and obtain employment as an RN. While the amount of experience you need to accumulate varies depending on the state where you intend to work as a case manager, the usual amount is one year.
Enroll in a Case Management CE Course
Although it is not necessary in many states, enrolling in a case management continuing education course can help prepare you for your case management certification exam. Many colleges and trade schools also offer certificate programs in case management. Depending on the educational path you choose, this training could take anywhere from just six to eight weeks. Many of these classes may be offered online as well.
Obtain Case Management Certification
The last step to beginning your career as a nursing case manager is to obtain case management certification. You can do this by contacting the American Nurses Credentialing Center or the Commission for Case Manager Certification and fulfilling their current certification requirements, which typically include the following:
- Proof of Completion of a BSN Program
- Proof of Employment as an RN
- Completion of a Case Management Exam
- Payment of an Exam Fee