Should You Worry About the New Covid Variants?

The appearance of new COVID variants has led to a spike in cases and hospitalizations. Learn everything you need to know about these variants and what you can do to prevent risking exposure.

Which Variant Caused This Current Spike?

Of the current COVID variants, the most prominent is the “Pirola” strain, otherwise known as the BA.2.86 variant. Per Al Jazeera, this highly mutated version of Omicron has been the major culprit behind the aforementioned surges. The Pirola variant possesses 30 different mutations, which is considerably higher than the strains that came before it. For reference, the Omicron and Eris variants had one to two mutations.

First appearing in Denmark on July 24 of this year, it recently spread throughout North America. The good news is that the risk of catastrophe is considerably lower. Scientists predict that the built-up immunities from vaccination and prior COVID-19 exposure will suffice in most cases. In addition, prior methods for detection and treatment seem to be compatible with the new variant.

Are There Other Variants to Watch Out For?

EG.5 is another notable Omicron variant. Most interestingly, it has been able to bypass prior COVID antibodies. At the moment, the World Health Organization has marked it as a low priority, but it is monitoring its progress closely.

What Can Be Done to Mitigate Risk?

Right now, the situation with these COVID variants is fluid. It is still unknown how transmittable they are, whether or not they respond to boosters, and what the long-term outlook is. Both mentioned strands are currently low risk, but the situation could develop at any second. For now, the best way to mitigate risk is the same as it has always been. Wearing masks wherever you go, staying updated with vaccinations, and limiting needless outside exposure are the best ways to avoid the COVID strains, if you cannot afford an infection.


How Foreign Nurses Can Start Working in the US

On paper, America provides tantalizing opportunities for registered nurses (RNs) abroad. With the US nurse shortage in full swing, there should be no lack of work openings for foreign-born HCPs.

The reality is more complicated than that, however. Thanks to current immigration policies, foreign nurses have to jump through numerous hoops before they can even practice.

To make life easier for aspiring overseas nurses, we have made this guide. Provided that you fulfill every requirement and go through the right channels, your dreams of working in America as a foreign nurse will eventually come true.

Meet the Basic Requirements

As mentioned earlier, there are numerous education requirements for nurses, before they can take US Nurse Jobs.

At the most basic level, all nurses have to meet the following professional and educational standards:

● Graduation from an accredited nursing program in your country of origin (Associate’s Degree in Nursing or Bachelor of Science in Nursing)
● An RN license
● At least two years of RN experience

In most states, you will also be required to take A Foreign-Educated Nurses (course) that is split between 120 hours of clinical rotations and 120 hours of lessons. Taking this at one of the US’s best nursing schools will give you an edge, with regards to preparation.

Take an English Proficiency Test

Most foreign-born nurses also have to take an English proficiency exam. Depending on your country of origin, you may have to take one of the following:

● International English Language Testing System (IELTS)
● Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)
● Test of English for International Communication (TOEIC)

The only exceptions to the rule are nurses who come from primarily English-speaking countries, such as:

● United Kingdom
● New Zealand
● Ireland
● Canada, sans Quebec
● Australia

Fulfill Nclex Requirements and Pass the Exam

To become a US nurse, you need to pass the NCLEX-RN, which is the certification test for registered nurses. To take this, foreign nurses must fulfil a number of different requirements. This includes the aforementioned education requirements for a nurse. You have to submit an application to take the test to a State Board of Nursing, along with the required documents and related fees. Afterwards, you have to verify your foreign nursing license and educational history and you have to fulfill a criminal background check.

Keep in mind some states have specific requirements you also have to fulfill. On a related note, how much your nurse salary is will also depend on which state you work in. While waiting for your application, take the opportunity to study for the test. At least two months will give you ample time to study and prepare. Luckily, there are many reviewers available online. Once the State Board of Nursing approves your application, you can register for the NCLEX-RN at Pearson Vue and schedule your exam at an approved testing centre. After you take the test, you will receive your results in 48 hours.

If you pass the test, then congratulations! You can now work with the top US nurse corporations in the country.

Link Up with a Reputable Us Nurse Agency

If you cannot be directly recruited by a hospital, you want to refer to a reputable nursing agency. Good agencies can sponsor your VISA application and help you find work. Refer to reviews or input from your nurse friends, to find the best agency for you.

Acquire Your Visa

Even after you secure your certification and employment, you still need a VISA. Green card holders enjoy full citizenship rights, which include the ability to live and work in America permanently.

With the right endorsement from an employer or your agency, and a VisaScreen certificate, naturalization can be sped up.

The application process ends with an interview with the US embassy. After a few days or weeks, you will find out if you passed. If you did: congratulations! You can now practice as a US Nurse. For further support and assistance, you can refer to the International Nurse Council website here.


Curbing Workplace Violence in Healthcare

Whether it is from their patients or visitors, workplace violence in healthcare has long been a massive problem. The World Health Organization claims that “8 to 38% of all nurses have suffered from healthcare violence, at some point in their careers.” It is impossible for HCPs to provide the best possible care, while they are suffering from harassment from the patients they are supposed to serve. Because of this, healthcare facilities have a responsibility to protect their staff from workplace violence. With the right strategies and systems in place, facilities across the country can do right by their healthcare workers.

What Is Workplace Violence?

Moving forward, workplace violence refers to physical, sexual, or verbal abuse committed by patients or visitors, towards HCPs. As was mentioned earlier, this happens far more often than it should. In fact, workplace abuse rates in healthcare are larger than in most sectors of the workforce.

Why Is Workplace Violence So Common in Healthcare Settings?

A number of factors have combined to make workplace violence so prevalent. Thanks to staffing shortages (among other things), HCPs are under increased pressure and stress. This lowers the quality of care, which increases frustration among patients and visitors. Staffing shortages not only exacerbate these problems, they also lower the capacity for patients across different hospitals. This means HCPs are more likely to come into conflict with patients who want to be admitted but cannot be.

Some of this is also the nature of the job. When you work with thousands of patients every day, you will eventually run into patients or visitors with violent dispositions and short temperaments. What is inexcusable is the lack of preventative measures and systems, on the part of certain healthcare facilities. Without assistance from the facilities themselves, HCPs will be exposed to patient violence no matter what.

What Are the Consequences of Workplace Violence?

Workplace violence is an extra source of stress, in an already stressful line of work. Regularly experiencing targeted violence can cause several mental problems related to stress, or exacerbate them. This includes but is not limited to, depression, anxiety, and burnout. All this eventually causes mass resignations and larger turnover, which makes the HCP shortage far worse than it already is.

In addition, healthcare workers can get injured by particularly violent and physical outbursts from a patient or visitor. They can get incapacitated by these injuries and/or traumatized by the whole ordeal.

What Can Be Done?

Facilities have both a material and moral imperative to address workplace violence. If left unchecked, staff will resign en masse and leave the facility shorthanded and crippled. More importantly, they need to ensure the health and safety of everyone who works under them. Not doing so would be a complete and utter failure for the nurse leaders and administrators in charge.

While there is no “one size fits all” solution, there are a number of measures that facilities can institute, to better protect their HCPs. Bringing in temporary HCPs is a good solution, as understaffing is one of the major causes of patient violence. When a facility’s patient-to-staff ratios are skewed, HCPs become more stressed and the quality of care diminishes, which results in increased patient violence. Bringing in temporary HCPs allows the facility to weather the storm until patient counts return to normal.

Instituting a proper reporting system is also paramount. HCPs should be able to notify administrators and leaders on workplace violence, as soon as possible. The facility has a responsibility to educate the staff on the existence of such a system, the policies regarding what does and doesn’t count as workplace violence, and how they would go about reporting. Not only that, but the facility should be responsive. If a reporting system is in place, but nothing is ever done about repeated abuse cases, then staff will know that it is completely useless.

Facilities must also look into investing in proper training programs. HCPs must be instructed and educated on what to do when they are confronted with violence, and how they can protect themselves in precarious situations. They need to know how to de-escalate confrontations, how to recognize hostile behaviors, and when they should retreat from the premises and ask for assistance.

This may go without saying, but investing in security should also be a top priority. In the event that a situation escalates beyond control, there needs to be emergency alarms on hand. A proper security system, trained guards, and a developed emergency response protocol would prevent catastrophic outcomes.


What Is Acute Care?

Acute care covers patients who develop sudden, life-threatening illnesses or diseases that require immediate attention. This can cover broken legs sustained from high drops, car crash victims, individuals injured by natural disasters and more. Since time is of the essence in these situations, these patients cannot just be placed on a waiting list. This is why acute care HCPs provide immediate, short-term treatment to get their condition stable enough for a swift recovery, or more long-term care.

Where Do Acute Care HCPs Work?

Acute care HCPs work in a variety of different departments and locations. This includes, but is not limited to:

● Intensive Care Unit
● Urgent Care Center
● Inpatient and Outpatient Medical/Surgical
● Neonatal Intensive Care
● Accident and Emergency Department
● And more.

Acute care HCPs can also work in nursing homes, long-term care centres, and other kinds of facilities.

What Do Acute Care HCPs Do?

The duties of an acute care HCP will depend on their role, unit, and specialization. That being said, HCPs in acute care often carry out the following tasks:

● Monitoring vital signs and symptoms to identify their status
● Defibrillation/Cardioversion
● Running diagnostic tests
● Providing medications
● Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support
● Providing urgent treatment under strict time constraints
● And more

Is There a Material Difference Between Acute HCPs and Regular HCPs?

Compared to regular RNs or LPNs, working in acute care requires more training, and sometimes specialized certifications. Most facilities want at least two years of relevant experience in an acute care setting. It only makes sense, considering they want experienced and proven HCPs who can thrive under pressure, and solve problems with critical thinking, and on severe time constraints.

While additional qualifications are not necessary in most instances, it may provide the extra edge you need. Some facilities may prioritize applicants with Certified Critical Care Nurse (CCRN) qualifications. The advantage may be marginal, but it points to a commitment towards continuous improvement and self-study.

Should I Become an Acute Care HCP?

Acute care is not for everyone. HCPs are constantly working fast, and it is the most stressful part of an already demanding line of work. If the pace of work is not for you, or you are worried about burning out or overexerting yourself, then you want to reconsider this role. If you thrive under pressure, however, then acute care is the perfect role for you. It will push you to think critically and efficiently in as short a time as possible. Because of the demands of labor, acute care HCPs are also compensated more than their counterparts. If all this appeals to you, then becoming an acute care HCP is highly recommended.


5 Back-To-School Tips for Healthcare Students

The school has returned for nursing students of all levels. Whether you are working towards your associate’s degree or a master’s degree, every student has to deal with an adjustment period. It can take a while to get back into the rhythm of things, after months of rest and relaxation. To make things easier for you, we have gathered a list of back-to-school tips and tricks to help you start the school year right.

Set a Consistent Routine

Setting a daily schedule or routine offers a host of benefits for HCP students. It provides structure to your school week, as you are never going to be at a loss for what you need to do next. When you have a consistent checklist, you reduce the risk of forgetting to do something (whether it is an assignment or an important task) and cramming later as a result. In the long term, you will experience less stress and will become a more productive individual over time. With less of a mental burden, you experience better mental and physical health over time.

You can establish when you eat breakfast, leave the house for your classes, study, do your homework and more. It does not have to be rigid. You can adjust your schedule based on your needs and priorities, at a given time. If there is a big test or assignment coming up, then you allocate more time towards that. As long as you are following the basic structure, you will reap all the benefits of a daily routine.

Find a Good Place to Study

Healthcare students have a lot on their plate. They need to memorize and internalize countless complicated concepts and apply them practically in the medical field. To do this effectively, you want a dedicated space for studying, in your home. It has to be organized, quiet, and removed from any potential distractions. This is why you want to study far away from your entertainment devices, like your computer or your gaming console.

If your house is noisy for reasons beyond your control, then you have alternatives. You can study at a nearby library or coffee shop, provided they have Wi-Fi. If you have a friend, try asking if you could study at their place for the night. Failing all this, you can put on your headphones and play soothing music in an attempt to block out any and all distractions. Find whichever works best for you, at that time.

Do Not Cram

Cramming is a zero sum game. Attempting to catch up to days or weeks of studying will leave you tired and stressed out, and can potentially burn you out over time. In addition, people who cram may end up passing, but the knowledge does not internalize and they generally perform worse in comparison to their contemporaries.

Instead of cramming, you want to stay on top of your studies to the best of your capacity. Read the material of your lesson the day before your classes cover them, and complete all your assignments on time.If you feel especially industrious, you can even study material well in advance. You may make mistakes with this self-guided study, but this can all be cleared up during classes.

Reach Out to Your Classmates

No student is an island, and that includes nursing school. Healthcare is a very team-driven industry, and you will not make it very far if you cannot work well with others. In addition, friendships are a valuable part of the school experience and spending time with them can help you unwind, after a particularly tough week of school. Do not be afraid to reach out, and make an attempt to connect with your peers.

You will not be close friends with everyone, but that is OK. A close inner circle of friends will naturally develop, and you can maintain a good acquaintanceship with everyone else. Organizing study groups with friends can allow you to bounce ideas off of each other, and assist one another with material that you are collectively struggling with. Making friends is also a good way to establish connections and networks in the healthcare industry. The list of personal and professional benefits is endless.

Take a Breather

You cannot study effectively in an empty tank. Do not hesitate to provide yourself with a break in between study sessions. Scheduling naps, a lunch out with friends, or even indulging in your hobbies once in a while is totally fine. When you get back to work, your mind will be well-rested and refreshed. Provided it is in moderation and not at the expense of your productivity, then a good break may be just what you need for some mental clarity.

When you accomplish something with your studies or professionally, do not hesitate to reward yourself either. As with breaks, you do not need to go all out all the time, but some indulgence once in a while will do you good.


How the Staffing Industry Has Changed Post-Pandemic

Although the pandemic is over, its effects on the healthcare industry can still be felt to this day. For one thing, it changed how facilities approached staffing. Thanks to the nursing shortage, facilities were pushed towards forward-thinking, short-term solutions. Suddenly, they had to meet safe staffing levels without overspending on labor. To understand where the future of the industry may lie, we must look at how healthcare staffing changed, why alternative staffing solutions have gained so much traction, and what the future may hold for hospitals, long-term care centres, and other healthcare facilities.

How Did Covid Affect the Healthcare Industry?

During the pandemic, facilities ended up contending with volatile spikes in demand and patient counts. COVID-19 admissions steadily rose throughout this time, reaching an all-time peak in 2022 with the spread of the Omicron variant. In January 2022, hospitals were dealing with 145,982 COVID patient admissions. These residents accounted for 30% of all Intensive Care Unit beds.

This led to crowded facilities and overextended HCPs. Suddenly, they were dealing with unsafe patient-to-HCP staffing ratios and unsustainable workloads. These conditions made them susceptible to stress and overwork, which could eventually lead to burnout. Quality of care directly suffered, as tired HCPs were more susceptible to costly medical errors. Inevitably, turnover rates increased as a result. Studies have even shown that HCPs who worked for three months during the COVID-19 pandemic were more likely to consider leaving the industry altogether.

Meanwhile, non-COVID patients were left in waiting rooms for a long time. While waiting, their conditions only worsened. Both staff and residents were suffering greatly, during the peak of the Coronavirus.

How Did Healthcare Facilities Respond?

Facilities obviously needed to return to safer staffing levels. They needed to bring in more HCPs to account for the higher patient counts. Unfortunately, simply bringing in more full-time healthcare workers was not an option, in most cases. Eventually, the COVID patient spikes would settle over time. There would still be COVID-related admissions, but the average daily patient counts would come down to where they used to be. In these situations, facilities would find themselves severely overstaffed. Their spending on compensation, training, and benefits would increase, yet they would find no material gain. Over a long enough period of time, this overstaffing would lead to financial issues and even potential bankruptcy. For those reasons, bringing in full-time staff all the time would be impractical.

For this reason, facilities ended up turning to flexible staffing solutions. This lets them bring additional HCPs as needed (or per diem), through temporary contracts. They could work with a facility for a set amount of time. It could be weeks or months, or it may only last the span of a single shift. Hospitals could account for sudden spikes inpatient admissions, estimate how long this rise in demand would last, and bring in temporary HCPs to work within that time. While they would have to orient HCPs to the systems and operations of a facility, they did not have to invest seriously in their training either. Temporary HCPs typically come with significant experience and are prepared to contribute to their facility almost instantly. Whether you need more registered nurses, doctors, physicians, or nurse aides, there are a host of temporary staffing services available to you.

What Staffing Options Are Available to Facilities?

Right now, there are two main flexible staffing solutions that facilities can make use of staffing agencies and staffing apps. The former is an established temporary staffing platform that was successful, even before the rise of COVID-19. Staffing agencies partner with HCPs, and work in conjunction with partnered facilities to find the most compatible fit. They usually secure months or weeks-long contracts for HCPs with facilities that need to fill in these short-term vacancies. Overall, this matching process can take weeks, with staffing agencies facilitating negotiations, settling documentation and so much more. To this day, they remain a reasonable outlet for facilities looking for trustworthy, and qualified HCPs who can contribute in the short term.

By comparison, staffing apps are a much newer development, but they are no less useful or reliable. Staffing apps allow HCPs to take up single shifts with their facilities of choice. They process all the documentation and credentialing in a much quicker manner, as a result. Apps like VitaWerks have risen in prominence, thanks to their convenience and ease of use. Compared to staffing agencies, facilities can find RNs, LVNs, CNAs, and more on short notice, and can match with them in a matter of minutes. If you need HCP contributions as soon as humanly possible, then staffing apps are a perfectly viable option.

How Has the Healthcare Staffing Industry Grown Over the Years?

The rise of COVID-19 brought alternative healthcare staffing solutions to prominence. Although the pandemic is finished, staffing continues to expand and grow in influence and profitability, over time. A 2022 market analysis report concluded that the staffing industry was valued at over $36.9 billion USD in that year. From 2023 to 2030, staffing is expected to see a compound annual growth rate of 6.93 percent. The industry saw an increased demand for healthcare staffing that has not abated, ever since the start of the pandemic. Developments in technology and the various benefits of per diem employment have also been cited as major driving factors behind the industry’s growth.

How Do Hcps Benefit from Temporary Staffing?

Facilities are not the only entity that can benefit from a temporary staffing setup. Per diem HCPs get to enjoy unprecedented professional freedom, while they work with staffing agencies or through staffing apps. They can choose where they work, and when they work, without any input from their bosses or managers. As long as they complete their shifts and contracts, then they have full control over their careers. This allows them to discover what they want out of their HCP lives, by experimenting with different roles and experiments.

This also gives them invaluable work experience in a variety of different settings and environments, which always looks good in their resumes. Finally, there is even a monetary incentive. Because short-term staffing solutions are in high demand, this is reflected in per diem rates. This means that HCPs can earn as much, if not more than their full-time counterparts. Just keep in mind that because they are independent contractors, they need to do their own taxes as a result. This can be a major headache, and it is highly recommended that you seek the help of an accountant if you can.

A Bright Future

The staffing industry will only continue to grow. As the shortages continue, and different COVID variants develop, facilities will need short-term solutions now, more than ever. Staffing agencies and apps give them this flexibility while providing HCPs a sense of professional freedom they have never experienced. Instead of supplanting full-time HCPs, they assist them by lightening the load and keeping staffing ratios at safe, recommended levels. As time passes and technology evolves, the staffing industry will continue to innovate. In that time, companies like VitaWerks will keep finding new ways to make life better for facilities and HCPs alike.


How to Renew Your HCP License in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania is an attractive destination for the best HCPs in the country, and it is not hard to see why. As the most populous state (around 39.2), demand for healthcare is sky-high and will only grow in the coming years. As a result, HCPs enjoy high employment rates and some of the best healthcare salaries in the country. No RN, CN or LPN can sit on their laurels, however, Pennsylvania-based nurses are no exception. You will be expected to periodically renew your license. Like every other state, Pennsylvania has its own unique renewal process and requirements. To help you out with your next renewal, we have laid out a step-by-step guide for nurse license renewal in the Golden State.

Renewing Your HCP License

Keep Track of the Renewal Period

Before anything else, you need to know when your license expires. When you know the renewal period, you can better plan out your continuing education requirements, document gathering, and more. This lets you finish all your renewal requirements on time, or well in advance. In Pennsylvania, RN licenses must be renewed every 2 years on April 30 or October 31. Meanwhile, LPNs have to renew every June 30 in even-numbered years. CNAs also have to renew their practice licenses every two years.

Fulfil your Continuing Education Requirements

The Pennsylvania Board of nursing wants to make sure that their HCPs are up to date with best HCP practices and actively practicing in their profession. To this end, healthcare professionals on all levels must complete a number of Continuing Education Units (CEUs), if they want to renew their licenses and keep practicing. The specific requirements will depend on your profession. Both RNs and LPNs have to complete 30 contact hours, to fulfil their CEU requirements. 2 or 3 of these hours (depending on whether or not it is a first-time application) must be fulfilled with an approved course on Child Abuse. Instead of a continuing education requirement, CNAs have to fulfill 8 salaried hours of nurse aide work at an approved facility, across the last 24 months.

Apply for Online Licensure Renewal

Everything has been moved to the internet, nowadays, and HCP licensure renewal is no exception. Pennsylvania’s HCPs can now finish the bulk of the renewal process in the comfort of their own homes. The PA Board of Nursing has outlined the step-by-step online renewal process on their official site. In summary:

Access the Pennsylvania Licensing System (PALS.)  The Board of Nursing highly recommends completing these steps on your laptop/desktop and through the Internet Explorer browser. You may experience technical difficulties applying on your phone, tablet, or another browser. Meanwhile, CNAs have a slightly different renewal process. They must apply through the official CNA365 hosted by Credentia. They can complete their application and submit their requirements, through this site.

You will be sent a notice from, notifying you prior to your license’s expiration. This email will contain your login information for PALS. You can also register on the PALS website. Once you are in, you can click on the renewal application page. It is recommended that you read every question thoroughly, in order to provide the best and most accurate information.

Once you have submitted your requirements and filled out your application, you can now pay for the renewal fee. Currently, RNs have to pay $122 for their renewals, while LPNs pay $76. These fees are subject to change.

Contact Information

For more details or clarification, it is recommended that you contact the Pennsylvania Board of nursing directly. All their relevant contact information and communication channels are listed below:

Mail Address:

State Board of Nursing

P.O. Box 2649

Harrisburg, PA 17105-2649

Phone Number: (717) 783-7142

Fax Number: (717) 783-0822


How to Renew Your RN License in Pennsylvania 

In every state, registered nurses are expected to renew their licenses. This ensures to the PA Board of Nursing that their RNs are actively practising, and continually studying to stay updated and educated. Nursing is constantly changing, and nurses have to keep up with the newest best practices, discoveries and technological advances. To ensure a hassle-free renewal process, this page will show you how to renew your Pennsylvania RN license, step by step.

Figure Out the Renewal Period

Renewing your license requires compiling documents, finishing a number of classes, gathering your license renewal fee and more. If you know when your license will expire, you can plan things accordingly and have everything ready just before the end of the renewal cycle, or well in advance. For RNs, licensure expires every two years on April 30 or October 31.

Fulfill Renewal Requirements

There are a handful of Pennsylvania RN renewal requirements that you must complete on or before your license expires. To begin, you need to complete 30 hours of continuing education from an approved provider. Without accreditation from the state, your hours will not be recognized. 2 hours must be allotted to Child Abuse Recognition and Reporting (otherwise known as Child Abuse CE.) The government provides a list of approved Child Abuse courses here.

Apply for Online Licensure Renewal

PA-based RNs can complete their renewal applications online. The PA Board of Nursing compiled a list of tips for registered nurses looking to renew their license here. To summarize the document:

Register and Login to the Pennsylvania Licensing System (PALS.) Do this on Internet Explorer and through a laptop or desktop to avoid bugs and compatibility issues. Your login information will be provided to you by a Renewal Notice sent by, prior to expiration. If you cannot find it in your email, check your spam folder.

When you have gained access to the site, carefully go through your renewal application. Answer all the questions as truthfully and accurately as possible. Review the questions and your answers, before submitting. After you fill out the application and submit your requirements, you can pay the renewal fee. As was mentioned before, RNs will be expected to pay $122 biannually.

Contact Information

The renewal process and guidelines can change at any moment. If you have any questions, it is recommended that you contact the PA Board of Nursing directly. To help, listed below are their official channels of communication:

Mail Address:

State Board of Nursing

P.O. Box 2649

Harrisburg, PA 17105-2649

Phone Number: (717) 783-7142

Fax Number: (717) 783-0822


How to Renew Your LPN License in Pennsylvania 

As a Licensed Practical Nurse, you have to renew your license periodically. This is to make sure that you are informed, and in compliance with an ever-changing set of best practices, regulations, and new techniques. Renewal also ensures that you are actively practicing, and not idling as an HCP. Every state has their own unique renewal requirements, and Pennsylvania is not exempt from this. To prepare you for the renewal cycle, we have provided a comprehensive guide for LPN license renewals in PA.

Figure Out the Renewal Period

LPNs in Pennsylvania are expected to renew their licenses on June 30, every even year. Luckily, you will be sent an email that will notify you about this, in advance. Knowing when your license expires lets you plan your requirements accordingly. This way, you can be prepared right on time, or well in advance.

Fulfill Renewal Requirements

 To renew, you need to finish 30 hours of continuing education. Regardless of where you complete this requirement, the establishment has to be accredited and recognized by Pennsylvania’s Board of Nursing. If not, your time will not be recognized when you apply for licensure renewal. 2 hours of continuing education must be completed via the Child Abuse Recognition and Reporting (Child Abuse CE.) For a complete list of approved Child Abuse courses, refer to the link here.

Apply for Online Licensure Renewal

LPNs in Pennsylvania can now renew their license online, on the Pennsylvania Licensing System (PALS.) The Board of Nursing has even provided a set of tips for LPN licensure renewal here.  For your convenience, we have provided a summary below:

 To start, register and log in to the Pennsylvania Licensing System (PALS.) The Board of Nursing recommends doing so on a desktop/laptop and with the Internet Explorer Browser. Otherwise, you can expect to run into a number of technical problems. The renewal notice sent via, before expiration, will contain all your login details. If you cannot find it, check your email’s spam folder or contact the PA Board of Nursing directly.

Do not haphazardly fill out your renewal application. Read each question carefully and review your answers before you submit. Once you complete the forms and submit your requirements, all that is left is to pay the renewal fee. At the time of writing, the cost for LPNs sits at $76.00. Note that this is subject to change.

Contact Information

Renewal requirements and processes can change at any time. For more information, you can refer to the official Pennsylvania website. If you cannot find your answers there, it is recommended that you contact the Board of Nursing directly, through any one of the following channels:

Mail Address:

State Board of Nursing

P.O. Box 2649

Harrisburg, PA 17105-2649

Phone Number: (717) 783-7142

Fax Number: (717) 783-0822


How to Renew Your CNA License in Pennsylvania 

In healthcare, the margin of error can be slim. Facilities need to be sure that a healthcare professional’s skills stay sharp, and that they are constantly updated with the latest medical knowledge. This is why HCPs on all levels must renew their licenses periodically, and Certified Nursing Assistants are no exception. The exact requirements and renewal process depend on the state you practice in. In this article, we will go over how to renew your CNA license in Pennsylvania.

Figure Out the Renewal Period

 In PA, CNAs have to apply for renewal once every two years. You can check when your license expires in the Registry section on the CNA365 website. When you know the renewal cycle, you can plan for your requirements, and have everything finished on (or before) the expiration date.

Fulfill Renewal Requirements

Before their renewal applications are accepted, CNAs have to complete eight consecutive hours (or one documented day) of salaried nurse aide work. This has to be completed within the 24-month licensure period and should happen under a state-approved healthcare facility. Otherwise, your shift will not be recognized.

Apply for Online Licensure Renewal

CNAs can complete their renewal application online, through Credentia’s CNA365. The site even provides a comprehensive step-by-step guide for filling out and submitting your license renewal request. For your convenience, here is a brief summary:

 From the home page, click the “Registry” section. From there, you can select the “renew” button and begin filling out your application. You will be asked to fill out three sections: Personal Information Verification, Registration Information, Employment, and Attestation. Answer every form truthfully and accurately. Be sure to review the information before proceeding to the next section. Once you submit your application, all there is left to do is wait. You will receive an email notification for when your CNA365 renewal request has been processed. If it has, you can click “Registry” and print a copy of your Registry Card.

Contact Information

For more questions, you can refer to the official Pennsylvania government website here. Otherwise, you can contact the PA Board of Nursing directly.

Mail Address:

Board of Registered Nursing

PO Box 944210

Sacramento, CA 94244-2100

Phone Number: 916-322-3350


 Board of Registered Nursing

1747 N. Market Blvd., Suite 150

Sacramento, CA 95834-1924


How to Search For CNA Jobs in California

CNAs are currently in huge demand, in the California area  According to the Higher Education for a Strong Economy, around 13,000 nursing assistant vacancies go unfilled every year. Per the California Board of Registered Nursing, it currently accounts for 458,717 registered nursing jobs. Between ageing populations and surging healthcare demand in general, CNAs are expected to soar in demand in the coming years. Whether you are a fresh nursing assistant looking for your first job or someone who wants to get into the healthcare industry, this article will go over how to find CNA travel jobs in California.

Acquire your California License

Before anything else, you obviously want to get your California CNA license. Part of the appeal of nursing assistant roles is their low barrier to entry, compared to other professions in the market. At the bare minimum, you have to fulfil a number of requirements before you can apply. California requires that all CNAs:

  • Are physically fit to work and can present up-to-date immunization records
  • Can pass a criminal background check
  • Graduated from an accredited California-based CNA program
  • Graduated from high school or have a general education diploma (GED.)
  • Must be at least 16 years old
  • Take and pass the state exam to achieve certified status

Luckily, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has a list of approved CNA schools, for your convenience. These programs are typically hosted by the Red Cross, trade schools or community colleges. There are also a host of high-quality CNA classes available online. The state of California requires CNAs to complete at least 150 hours of training, which is split between 50 hours of classroom instruction and 100 hours of clinical rotations. This usually takes 6 to 15 weeks to complete, although certain accelerated programs allow you to finish your training in just 4 months.

Once you have finished your training, you have to apply for certification and take the state exam at a verified testing centre. The CDPH list of approved testing locations can be found here Once you pass, you can claim your CNA certificate. Congratulations! You are now certified and you can start hunting for CNA jobs in CA.

Refer to School Resources

Finding new travel CNA jobs in California can be a tricky proposition. Luckily, there are things you can do early to start hunting for job opportunities. Schools offer a host of career resources to their students, to aid them in their job search.

  • Career presentations from representatives of various healthcare facilities
  • Faculty who will help you find entry-level opportunities.
  • Career fairs where you can ask questions to potential employers, inquire about feeder internships or present your CV.
  • Alumni networks are made up of graduate nurses where you can build connections that may lead to entry-level opportunities.

If you study in California, you should be able to search for an RN position in-state without much issue. If you are from a different state, consult with clinical instructors or career counsellors to find entry-level jobs in CA.

Account for Location

According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, California has the third-highest mean wage, at around $ 39,760. Of course, location matters. How much a CNA makes in Los Angeles will not be the same as the rates in Anaheim or Chino. Luckily, CA accounts for a number of the highest-paying metropolitan areas in the entire country, including:

  • San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara: $47,690
  • San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward: $47,500
  • Salinas: $44,210
  • Napa: $42,310
  • Santa Cruz-Watsonville: $41,070
  • Sacramento–Roseville–Arden-Arcade: $135,490
  • Santa Rosa: $40,770

Keep in mind that your salary does not exist in a vacuum. When you choose a place to settle down, you also want to consider living expenses such as cost of living and travel expenses. In addition, the application process is naturally competitive in these active areas. While you are job searching, however, the places listed above are as good a place to start as any.

Consider the Highest Paying Specializations

Specialized CNAs in certain fields have the opportunity to earn more than their other counterparts. If this is a serious consideration for you, then consider this list of CNA specialities with the highest demand:

  • ICU
  • Operating Room
  • Telemetry
  • Medical-Surgical
  • Emergency Room
Find Jobs Online

Nowadays, hospitals are regularly posting their job listings online. On sites like Indeed or Nursing Network, you can find CNA job openings in your area and send your applications in the comfort of your own home. Hospitals also post job openings on their site, which can help you cast a wider net.  You can also link up with staffing agencies online who will sign you to travel CNA jobs in California. Just be sure to scan through reviews to get a sense of an agency’s reputation or how they treat the nurses under their watch. Onboarding and submitting your documents is also a lengthy process that can take two weeks or more, which is cumbersome compared to alternatives like VitaWerks.

Book Per Diem Nursing Shifts

While it is not a speciality, Per Diem RN jobs have grown in recent years as a valuable alternative. Per Diem, nursing serves as a valuable stop-gap solution to the nurse shortages that have affected healthcare facilities. Since demand is at an all-time high, their salaries are highly competitive with many full-time rates. Platforms like VitaWerks will link you with the highest-paying CNA jobs in CA, with the help of advanced AI-matching technology. With the flexibility to set your own schedules and work in different facilities, all while earning more than some traditionally employed nurses, CNAs can enjoy unparalleled personal and professional freedom.


Why Facilities Turn to Per Diem Staffing

We still feel the ripple effects of the pandemic. Hospitals all across the nation are contending with critical staffing shortages, across all levels. Healthcare professionals continue to leave the workforce in droves, due to retirement, burnout and/or stress. This places facilities in a precarious situation. Many hospitals and long-term care centres have turned to per diem nursing as a solution. For the uninitiated, this is the temporary hiring of nurses “as needed.” Despite the apprehensions of some HCPs or individuals, the per diem nursing industry is only growing by the day. With all the advantages that temporary staffing provides, it is easy to see why.

Per Diem Staffing Offers Flexibility

 The pandemic produced a spike in admissions that facilities were not prepared for. They did not have the manpower to handle this sudden increase in demand, which led to unfavorable nurse-to-patient staffing ratios. This meant that the remaining staff were stretched thin and overworked to exhaustion. At the same time, bringing in more full time employees would not be a sustainable solution.

When the pandemic dies down and demand returns to normal, facilities will become over employed and have to incur significant costs on redundant labor. The same will happen after a natural disaster or incident. Temporary staffing is the perfect middle ground, as it allows you to temporarily increase the number of staff on hand. In theory, this lets facilities weather the storm before returning back to normal operations.

 Per Diem Staff Supplements a Facility’s Full Time HCPs

 There is a perception among some that per diem staffing will supplant full-time healthcare professionals, over time. The reality could not be farther from the truth. Temporary staffing is there to assist and support the full-time HCPs who are straining under an increased workload. They can provide crucial specialized services that a facility currently lacks. They can cover for HCPs who have called off work, either on sick leave or for their paid vacations.

Later down the road, some of these temporary HCPs may end up integrating full-time with the facilities they work with, if they strike a rapport. In the long term, temporary staff will benefit both the facility and the staff themselves in equal measure.

Per Diem HCPs are Some of the Best in the Business

 Temporary nurses have become more than just “cheap replacements” to full-time HCPs. Per diem, staffing is growing faster than ever. With facilities desperately in need of manpower, demand has soared during and after the pandemic. In fact, per diem rates have become competitive with even full-time HCP compensation.

This attracts extremely qualified and experienced healthcare professionals who excel in their respective fields. These HCPs also tend to be quick and adaptable as a necessity, given how many environments they have to integrate into on a daily basis.

A Look into the Future

 The healthcare shortage is not projected to end anytime soon. The world at large looks to be short 5.7 million nurses by 2030 if current trends continue. Healthcare facilities need to adapt to this new environment if they want to survive. They must use every resource available to them if they want to bolster their workforce. They need to invest in nurse education, support the continued development of HCPs on their staff, and bring temporary nurses on board, to keep their workforce afloat. With the proper investment, towards the future and the present, the healthcare industry will thrive entering the next decade.


Incident Reporting

No healthcare operation is perfect. Every healthcare professional and facility works overtime to prevent medical or equipment errors, but the margins in healthcare are always incredibly thin. When an error results in further injury or costly consequences, facilities must recognize what went wrong, and examine how they can avoid these “healthcare incidents” in the future. This is why incident reports are so important, for the success of any reputable healthcare facility. To help facilities with improving their operations, facilities need to make sure their incident reporting is as effective as it can possibly be.

 What is an Incident Report?

For the uninitiated, an incident report is the collation of data regarding the healthcare incidents that take place in a hospital, physician’s office, or other healthcare setting. In theory, this allows facilities to examine the most commonly occurring incidents, isolate their root cause, and address them for better patient AND HCP safety. Most incident reports are filed by HCPs working directly, as they are commonly first-hand witnesses (or even victims) to the various hazards in the workplace. This includes nurses, doctors, and physicians. That being said, anyone can submit an incident report, such as patients, staff, patient families, and more.

What are the Obstacles to Good Incident Reporting?

Incident Reporting is only as good as the culture of the workplace and the system in place. If there is no convenient or timely reporting system in place, then most HCPs will simply not bother. On a similar note, if your facility has a track record for ignoring incidents, then HCPs will decide it is not worth it. More pressingly, facility personnel and residents to avoid getting blamed and ostracized.  A number of issues can prevent HCPs from reporting incidents, but these are the most pressing.

What can be done?

If a facility wants to facilitate effective Incident Reporting, a couple of key measures must be taken.

Make Reporting More Convenient

 If facilities invest to make Incident Reporting as hassle-free and convenient as possible, more HCPs will bother to report. A great way to achieve this is by going digital. It does not get more convenient than incident reporting through your phone or various electronic devices. Adopting a mobile application specifically for incident reporting, or effectively integrating incident management software that collects and synthesizes data efficiently are just some of the measures you can take.

Communicate with Staff Throughout the Process

Proper communication can resolve most of the problems that plague incident reporting systems. You want your staff to know where they can report incidents while encouraging them to do so when necessary. Make it clear that this is for the good of the company, and that they will not be punished for presenting a problem that can be prevented in the future. Congratulate them for pointing out problems or concerns before they can get worse in the future.

Give Running Updates on Facility Measures

When you start addressing these problems, you must also communicate what is being done and how the facility will do it. Seeing tangible results convinces HCPs of the effectiveness of the incident reporting system.

Be Transparent

You want your staff to feel involved with the facility’s processes. Share the statistics and findings with your staff. This not only makes them more involved but makes them cognizant of these potential risk factors as they provide care. This benefits everyone involved and encourages staff to notify problems whenever they are recognized, rather than avoiding the process altogether.