What Nurse License Do You Need to Work in a Detoxification Facility?
Each detoxification center employs different mixes of nursing staff for their patients. That means there are difference licensing requirements needed to work in a detoxification facility. Some states have specific requirements for nurses in detoxification facilities. The best option is to contact the employer and the state about what license you need to work. That will give you the answer you need. Here is a general guide to the different licensing and detoxification facilities.
• Registered nurses are the ones that treat patients, administer medications, and do diagnostics. They work with the doctors to implement care plans. They help develop plans on dealing with a patient's particular problems. They implement measures to keep patients from hurting themselves or others. They monitor patient progress and notify doctors when changes happen. They need to have a grasp on mental health issues as well as drug and alcohol dependency. They often have to make decisions in critical situations without input from a doctor. They essentially lead the immediate care teams and manage long term care at the same time.
• LPNs are a necessary part of detoxification facilities. They monitor vital signs and perform other necessary duties. LPNs help with monitoring the patients closely. They take vital signs and record results. They monitor for withdrawal symptoms and notify medical personnel to those changes. They help administer medications as needed. They often overlap in duty with the RN and the CNA.
• While they do not need a specific license, a CNA is also a vital member of a detoxification facility. This position is the one who works with patients one on one. Many people entering a detoxification facility can take care of themselves. However, as they begin to withdraw, that can change dramatically. The CNA helps each patient with personal hygiene and other personal care issues throughout their stay. They also monitor the patient for symptoms and other changes that the doctors and RNs need to know.
You need to contact the detoxification facility directly to find out their requirements. Each center has its own mix. They also have different requirements for the people they bring on staff. Many want nurses to have some experience and training with mental health patients. They also need to know how to handle acute and critical care in many cases. They want people dedicated to this type of high stress environment. Having a license is one thing. However, wanting to work with people going through detoxification is another story all together.