How To Become A Legal Nurse Consultant
To become a registered nurse, a person must complete a formal educational program in nursing. At minimum, they can complete a diploma program offered through a hospital (takes about 3 years). They can also earn an associate’s degree or a Bachelor of Science degree from an accredited college or university. Many nurses go on to earn advanced degrees such as a Master of Nursing or Doctorate of Nursing and may specialize in a particular type of nursing like cardiology.
After earning their degrees, nurses are required to obtain a license from the state in which they practice. This license must be maintained by completing continuing education courses that help nurses stay on top of changes in the medical industry. Although not required, many nurses also earn credentials through certifying professional organizations.
As noted before, a legal degree is not required to become a LNC. In fact, most nurses do not have any legal experience when they begin the transition into the field. Some are trained on the job by attorneys or other legal professionals. Some study law on their own.
However, a great many complete formal educational programs that terminates in diplomas or degrees. Licensing is typically not required for legal nurse consulting, but nurses can obtain the Legal Nurse Consulting Certified (LNCC) credential with verifies they have achieve the level of education and skill required to do well in the industry.
The Clinical Experience of Nurses
Legal nurse consultants have been around since the 1970s, but didn’t formally organize until the American Association of Legal Nurse Consultants (AALNC) was formed in 1989. This organization was put together by practicing LNCs as a way to share their experiences and encourage others to enter the profession. Additionally, they have set guidelines for what makes a good and effective LNC so that those wanting to work with a legal nurse consultant have something to compare the skills and experience of potential applicants against. It is important that hiring agents carefully evaluate all potential LNCs to ensure they are getting someone
Nurses from all areas of the medical field choose to become legal nursing consultants. The bulk of their experience usually comes from medical-surgical nursing, but many also have come from specialized nursing areas including obstetrics, cardiology, oncology, and neurology. It is this range of experience that allows LNCs to objectively analyze, review, and offer opinions on medical-legal issues. To be successful, nurses should have at least 5 years in their field prior to becoming an LNC.
with the appropriate amount of medical and legal knowledge.