First Time User? Enroll now.
COVID-19: Vaccine information, testing, treatment, and additional resources
Home > Health Library > Registered nurse (RN)
Registered nurses (RNs) provide treatment, counseling, and health education. They provide assessment, plan and implement care, and evaluate outcomes.
Nurses work as part of a health care team in a variety of environments, often under the supervision of a doctor. Most nurses work in hospitals. Others work in settings such as community or public health, outpatient care, nursing education, occupational health, nursing home agencies, hospice programs, schools, and student health clinics.
A registered nurse (RN) may hold either a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) from a 4-year university or an associate degree in nursing (ADN) from a 2-year college. All graduates must successfully pass the Registered Nurse Licensing Examination to become licensed to practice as a professional RN. Graduation from a state-accredited program is a prerequisite to taking the licensing examination. A registered nurse must hold a current license in the state in which he or she practices. Licensing requirements are managed by individual state boards of nursing.
Current as of: October 6, 2021
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Anne C. Poinier MD - Internal Medicine & Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & Martin J. Gabica MD - Family Medicine & E. Gregory Thompson MD - Internal Medicine
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2022 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.