Urologic Nurse Job Description & Scope of Practice
A urology nurse is a nurse that specializes in caring for patients with illness or diseases of the urinary system. The urinary nurse treats patients with diseases of the kidney, bladder, and urethra as well as any other parts of the urinary tract. The urologic nursing professional works closely with the doctor and assists with patient intake information, exams, preparing for lab tests, diagnosing illnesses, and educating patients and their families on the treatment and maintenance of the urinary system.
Urology deals with kidney related illnesses such as kidney stones. Kidney stones are among the most common type of disorder that affects the urinary system. Another common urologic condition is urinary incontinence. Nurses who specialize in urology assist patients with learning how to take care of their urinary problems including how to take medication as prescribed and how to make note of symptoms.
How to Become a Urologic Nurse
A urologic nursing is a specialized nursing position. To become a nurse specializing in urology you must first attain your nursing degree. After getting a nursing degree you will need to take the NCLEX-RN examination to become a licensed nurse in your state. Some nurses may choose to go on to a Master’s program to achieve a Master’s degree in Nursing (MSN). When choosing a MSN programs choose a specialty that will assist with becoming a urology nurse. Additionally, choose a nursing position in a hospital or clinical setting that specializes in urologic health. If you gain advanced education you may expect better career options and salaries over your lifetime.
Urologic Nursing Education Requirements, Certification, and Schooling Programs
In order to become a urology nurse you will need to have a nursing degree. There are two options for nursing education including an associate’s degree in nursing (ADN) or a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing (BSN). In order to attain an ADN degree you will need to graduate from a two-year program. The BSN is a four-year program. When taking courses during undergraduate study you should take specialized courses in biology, anatomy, and chemistry. This will assist with learning more about the urinary system.
After becoming a registered nurse, you should get experience as a nurse by working in an entry level nursing position. Once you have additional experience you may opt to take certification exams through the Certification Board of Urologic Nurses and Associates (CBUNA). You should also join the Society of Urologic Nurses and Associates (SUNA). SUNA provides information, sponsors conferences, and certifies nursing professionals. Nursing professionals with these additional credentials may be in higher demand and may attain higher salaries.
The Society of Urologic Nurses and Associates certifies urologic nurses through the CBUNA. Applicants must have completed their education through a program accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) and possess 800 hours clinical practice in a urologic setting. Nurses with an associate’s degree can also obtain certification after one year experience in urology. The multiple-choice exam covers numerous topics including erectile dysfunction, minimally invasive therapy for benign prostatic hyperplasia, pelvic organ prolapse and voiding dysfunction. SUNA recommends voluntary certification for all professionals working in a urologic setting.
Urologic Nurse Salary and Career Outlook
Nursing and all health care professions are growing rapidly. With more and more Americans reaching old age, the need for nurse care professionals continues to increase. The urology nurse is a specialized position. Most nurses who specialize in urology can expect a salary ranging from $62,000 to $78,000 or more per year. The more experienced nurse should expect a salary on the high end of the scale.