May 31st, 2012
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Become a Nurse
The role of a nurse must surely be one of the most demanding yet rewarding ones available. If you have the right skills you can go far in this job, starting as a qualified nurse and moving into more specialist roles during your career.
Let’s find out more about what it takes to become a nurse.
What does a nurse do?
There is no simple answer here. There are different types of nurses and the job description will vary depending on what nursing role is undertaken. For example nursing auxiliaries will only assist qualified nurses rather than performing all the same tasks a nurse would. Nurses will always be there to assist patients, giving medication, taking blood pressure, assisting in emergencies and taking on all manner of other tasks as well.
What training do you need to complete in order to become a nurse in South Africa?
You will need either a degree or a diploma course; it is advised to get a degree if possible. You will need a National Senior Certificate in either case. The course will last for four years and it must be done at a recognised university. Some of the training will be undertaken in hospitals (typically training hospitals) so you will gain all the skills you require to become a nurse.
From that point on you can decide whether you want to be a nurse or whether you want to further your training in order to become a specialised nurse. You may discover you have a particular interest in a specific area of nursing. If this is the case you can look at opting for more training in the future, in order to gain the role you really want.
What jobs are available for nurses in South Africa?
You can opt to be a nursing auxiliary if you wish; indeed this can be a good role to opt for if you are unsure whether a nursing career would be for you or not. This role will see you assisting nurses in their daily tasks, but you would not take on the same number of tasks the average nurse would.
The proper path to nursing will see you go from a registered nurse to a nursing sister once you are qualified. As a sister you will oversee other nurses as they go through their training, as well as looking after patients and performing a wide range of tasks.
From there you can go on to focus on training for one of many other nursing roles. These are specialist roles and can involve working in many different areas of nursing. Typical examples include midwife, ICU nurse and children’s nurse.
So the career path of a nurse can be an enormously rewarding and fulfilling one. Spending four years training to become a nurse is time well spent and will allow you to embark on this career as well as finding out where you would like it to go in the future. You could make a great nurse!